Policy & Procedure for Recognition of High School Credits Awarded by a Non-Accredited High School

Golden Valley Charter School

Policy and Procedure for Recognition of High School Credits Awarded 

by a Non-Accredited High School


Definition: The term non-accredited is intended to cover all possible schooling situations other than attendance through or at an accredited high school. Throughout this document, “non-accredited high school” is inclusive of independent homeschoolers and homeschoolers affiliated with a non-accredited charter, private or other organization, as well as students who attended traditional schools that were not accredited.

Policy: In order for Golden Valley Charter School to recognize high school credits from non-accredited high schools, a portfolio must be submitted to substantiate the credits awarded for each course title appearing on a transcript from a non-accredited institution. GVCS will review submission of information and make a determination as to the applicability of said high school credits towards meeting GVCS’s graduation requirements.


All students entering GVCS without a transcript from an accredited institution will be enrolled as 9th grade students, pending portfolio review. Once the portfolio is submitted and reviewed, the student’s grade level will be adjusted appropriately.


The transcript is submitted with the student’s application. The portfolio must be submitted to the school office within twenty-one (21) calendar days from the first day of attendance.


Please see page 6 of this document for an addendum describing a typical transcript and its contents.


  • General: The portfolio will consist of a short description of each course, a listing of topics covered in the course, the educational resources and approaches employed, any necessary additional comments or information about the course, and 5 work samples per course.

The attached template is provided for ease of compiling and presenting the required information.

  • Length: The maximum number of pages devoted to any one course should not exceed 2 pages, not inclusive of the work samples.
  • Formatting: You are not required to use the Word template in preparing your portfolio, but you should ensure that the formatting of your document is similar to the template. Font size should be 11 or 12 pt (Times New Roman, Arial or similar), with minimum margins of 0.75”, and single spacing (do not reduce these items to try to squeeze in more information).  Number the pages at the bottom.
  • Portfolio author: As parents and others may have been actively involved in a student’s education, persons other than the student may create the portfolio.
  • Use of first or third person: Discussion of the student’s education may be in the first person (“I studied…”) or third person (“John studied…”). The first person should not be used for persons other than the student. So rather than writing “Seeing his interest in the museum, I decided to buy John an annual pass,” say “John showed much interest in the museum, and his parents thus purchased an annual pass.”
  • Contacts: Contact the Director of Education with any questions.


Submit completed portfolios to Golden Valley Charter School, 3585 Maple St., Suite 101, Ventura, CA, 93003, Attention: Director of Education.


Portfolios are due within 21 calendar days from the first day of attendance.


Board Approved: 9-11-06

Portfolio Template:


Portfolio Cover Page


Student Name: 



Email address: 

Mailing address:


Replace this title with a course title, for example, US History or Algebra 2


Topics Studied

List the topics studied within this course, by replacing this paragraph. In choosing the topic granularity, use the general guideline that a one-semester course might cover about 10-15 topics. The topic list will typically occupy from 1/4 page to 3/4 page. Strive to keep topics concise, using just a few words to describe each topic. To save space, you might list topics inline in a paragraph, as follows: Advanced Algebra: — Models, Functions, and Permutations — Linear Relationships and Functions — Matrices – Linear Systems — Quadratic Equations and Functions — Polynomials and Polynomial Functions – etc. Another example: Geometry: Tools of Geometry — Investigating Geometric Figures — Transformations: Shapes in Motion – etc. Alternatively, you may wish to use multiple columns or a table, for this section only, if you are comfortable working with such items in your word processing software. Topics included here should be high-school level and above.


Educational Resources and Approaches

List and describe the resources utilized to study the above topics, and the approach to using those resources, by replacing the following list. Example resources/approaches include:

  • Used textbook ABC. List the textbook (title, author, publisher, year), and provide supporting information about the textbook if available, such as “Used by local high school for XYZ course,” or “Used by Ventura Community College’s course XYZ 101.” Also, describe how the student utilized the textbook, e.g., “Read chapters. 1-9, solved odd-numbered problems at end of each chapter, completed 12 of the 19 exercises in XYZ Workbook.”
  • Used web page, book, magazine article, video, educational software, etc. You will likely want to group items, like “Watched 10 videos on American History.” Provide specific publication information when available (title, author, date, etc.). Explain how these materials were used, such as “Watched the videos, then wrote 7 essays 3-5 pages each in length, with topics including Causes of the Civil War, and The Impact of European Disease on Indian Populations.”
  • Visited museums, historical sites, countries, etc. Provide details when possible (site name, approximate date, etc.), and how those visits translated into topic learning. For example: “I attended the Norton Simon Museum and viewed the Degas works. I wrote a 4 page essay about Degas, integrating my personal viewing experience into additional research completed in books and on the Internet.” Another example: “My family went on a trip to Russia. I wrote a 5 page paper on the use of the potato in Russian culture and society.”
  • Attended lectures. Provide specific details when possible (title, speaker, location, date, etc.), e.g., “Attended lecture at Cal State Channel Islands on the History of Women in Religion by Prof. Jones, April 2004.” Provide details about how the lecture fit into the course of study and describe any follow-up activities completed, related to the lecture.
  • Took a course. Describe the course title, who offered the course, dates, any grades received, etc. If the course was taken at an accredited institution (i.e. a community college, online school) and the student received high school credits on their transcript, the official transcript from the accredited institution must be submitted to the school office. Work samples will not be required for these types of courses.  (see Work Samples section below)
  • Took part in study groups. Describe who comprised the group(s), frequency of meetings, format of meetings, etc.
  • Life experiences. Describe relevant experiences, e.g., “Took part in a play on the life of Ghandi, during which actors learned of British occupation of India, and of Ghandi’s message of peaceful resistance,” or “Worked at the La Jolla Art Museum summer 2005, answered art questions for elementary school groups,” or “Spent a year living in Germany, learned to speak German fluently.”
  • Conversations with knowledgeable people. For example, “Sally had conversations with her mother, a chemist, on average about 2-3 times per week for about 15-20 minutes each, discussing topics in biology, chemistry, and physics,” or “John spent 30 minutes a week for 1 year talking with his grandpa about World War II.”


There are countless other educational resources and approaches. List any and all utilized for the study of this particular course.


Please try to use a bulleted list as above. Group items as you see fit. Portfolio reviewers will appreciate concise information. Long or wordy descriptions are not necessary – in fact, short incomplete sentences may be more appropriate at times. Reviewers will also appreciate precise information, with specific titles, dates, and numbers given when possible. For example, “Joe read 10 novels in 2002 and 12 in 2003,” is better than “Joe read a lot of novels.” Even better would be a list of titles read along with the dates the books were read, or at least some examples of the titles read.


Additional Comments/Information (optional)

As necessary or desired additional comments or information may be included here, to provide further clarification of course content and methods.


Work Samples

Attach 5 work samples from the course. Do not append them to the end of the document, but rather keep the work samples associated with their related course description. Also, be aware that GVCS will not return portfolios to students, so either send copies of work samples, or keep copies for yourself.


This work sample requirement is waived for a course taken at an accredited institution. A copy of the official transcript for a course(s) taken at an accredited institution, for which high school credits are awarded on the non-accredited transcript, must be submitted to the school office.


Replace this title with the next course title, for example, English 9 or Biology


Topics Studied

List the topics for this course, as done for the previous courses. The number of courses included on the transcript and in this portfolio is dependent on the student’s grade level. High school students typically take 5-7 courses per semester, with 2 semesters in each grade level. Each course description will include all the sections shown on this page.


Educational Resources and Approaches 


Additional Comments/Information (optional) 


Work Samples


Addendum:  High School Transcripts


High school transcripts take many forms. The format and content of a transcript a student receives from a non-accredited institution/homeschool situation may vary.


Typically, a high school transcript includes the following information for each course title included:


  • Grade level in which the work was completed, i.e. 9, 10, 11 or 12;


  • School year in which the work was completed. This is often noted as the calendar year in which the school year concluded, i.e. 2015 indicates work was completed in school year 2014-2015, or 2014 indicates work was completed in school year 2013-2014;


  • Semester in which the work was completed, i.e. 1 or 2 for during the regular school year, 3 or SS for summer school;


  • A course number or identifier, if appropriate;


  • The course title and/or description, i.e. US History A for 1st semester of US History, or Geometry B for second semester work in Geometry;


  • The mark or letter grade, i.e. A, B, C, D or F;


  • The number of credits received for the coursework. The credits quantify how much work was completed in the course.  Some programs use 10 credits for a full year’s worth of content, 5 credits for a semester’s worth of content. Others use 1 credit or unit for a full year’s worth of content, 0.5 or ½ credit or unit for a semester’s worth of content completed;


  • And the source awarding the credits and verifying completion of the work, i.e. the school’s name.


Other information typically included on a transcript might include:


  • Student’s name (must be included);
  • Student’s address;
  • Student’s birth date;
  • Student’s gender;
  • Student’s current grade level;
  • Student’s student ID number;
  • Student’s entry date and exit date from the school;
  • Assessment information, i.e. CAHSEE status, SAT scores and dates tested, etc.;
  • And/or student’s grade point average (GPA).


An official transcript must include a school seal, stamp or the signature of a school official or person overseeing the education of the student.

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3585 Maple Street, Suite 101, Ventura, California 93003