[This is one in a 3-part series. To view the next post, click HERE.]
I’ll cut right to the chase. The takeaway from this article is to start high school transcripts early. And by early, I mean at the end of 8th grade or the beginning of 9th. Some of you planning-types may want to do it even earlier.
And whatever you do, don’t start one in the middle of a school year. Not when everything is in full swing. Use vacation time or summer break. Or, if you don’t get those, then give yourself a planning day to create a blank transcript. Better yet, take a couple of days to begin focusing on all of the other record-keeping strategies you’ll want to put in place for high school at the same time, too.
Here’s why you must begin your child’s transcript early:
By starting in 9th, the blank transcript is set up and ready to go. It’s typed up. It’s saved to a computer. You like it. You trust it. It contains a place for every little thing you know needs to be there. It’s printed out, and a blank copy is pinned to a bulletin board. It’s ready when you are.
It takes time to get a transcript just right. Spacing takes time. Grading formulas must be thought out. Advanced design elements take time to figure out, especially if this is the first time you’ve ever done a transcript.
With a blank framework already in place, you’ll never need to do that step again. Ever. It becomes a fill-in-the-blank kind of thing forever more. You can drop things in any time you get a minute. Updates are quick. Entries are a breeze. Changes take no time at all.
Finally, it avoids you reaching the finish line unprepared. I call that, “transcript horror”, which is basically your worst nightmare — the one in which you’ve been asked to recreate the last 4 years of homeschool entirely from memory. Oh, and part of the nightmare is that your student’s entire future depends on your ability to perform this task in, say, a couple of hours or less. Perfectly. Otherwise, he won’t get in to college, get a job, earn scholarship money or have a good life.
Early transcript prep is one the greatest returns on the high school investment. A great transcript goes a long, long way for your student. I have seen lots of transcripts over the years, so you’ll have to trust me on this one. Your student deserves better than a last-minute, hastily thrown together sheet of paper that barely meets minimum standards.
Do you have a student grades 7th, 8th or 9th grade right now? Can you guess what time it is?
Unless you already have a transcript hanging from the wall, the time to create one is now. Get working.
No excuses. I’ve even got a free sample for you here.
P.S. I have extra transcript help in my e-book, Ten Steps to the Finish Line. Find it in my book store.