Idaho State Homeschool Graduation FAQs

Christian Homeschoolers of Idaho State (CHOIS) would like to thank you for your interest in the upcoming Idaho State Homeschool Graduation Ceremony. We are planning a special ceremony to honor senior high homeschooled graduates from across the state. Many frequently asked questions are answered below. Please contact us for further clarification.

Graduation Information

Application Deadline: January 1, 2017

No late applications can be accepted.

Location and Time:

Graduation Date: May 20, 2017
Time: Ceremony begins promptly at 4pm
Graduates will arrive earlier in the day.

Brandt Center

707 Fern St.
Nampa, ID 83686


Application Fee: $145.00

The application fee covers the cost of the facility, cap and gown, diploma with cover, and printed ceremony programs. Traditional cap and gown are mandatory for all graduates. Fees paid for the Idaho State Homeschool Graduation ceremony are non-refundable and non-transferrable.

Honor Cord Fee:
$10.00 for Gold cords, $10.00 for White Cords

Optional Purchases:

There are optional purchases which will include separate charges. These options include honor cords, yearbook, and ceremony DVD. The CHOIS Idaho State Homeschool Graduation will order honor cords for validated graduates at an additional fee per cord. Scores must be validated through the Idaho Coalition of Home Educators.


Clarification of Homeschooling

The CHOIS Idaho State Homeschool Graduation ceremony is open to graduating seniors who have been educated at home by their parents in accordance with Idaho Code 33-202. The parents or guardians must retain complete responsibility for their child’s education. Those enrolled in a public, private, charter, magnet or virtual charter school are not eligible to participate. Graduates must have been home educated for their entire senior year of high school. College level courses may be counted toward homeschool eligibility.


Dress Protocol:

Graduates will wear caps and gowns (to be ordered by CHOIS) over dress clothes with dress shoes, dress boots, or dress cowboy boots (no sneakers/tennis shoes, no or flip flops.) Young men must wear dress shirts and slacks, tie optional. Young women must wear dresses or skirts. No embellishments or personalization of caps and gowns will be permitted during the ceremony (with the exception of honor cords and Congressional Medals). This is mandatory for participation. The caps and gowns will belong to the graduates following the ceremony. The committee will order and deliver them to the graduates on graduation day. Please contact us if further clarification is needed.



We want the actions of each individual to honor the graduating class as a whole. While we recognize the uniqueness of each graduate, we have come together to graduate as a class. Please refrain from actions and attire which would draw attention to yourself and divert it from the rest of the graduates. Please contact us if further clarification is needed.


Publicity Photos

Photographs taken by CHOIS representatives at this event may appear in the CHOIS Connection Magazine, on the CHOIS website, on CHOIS social media pages or in other CHOIS publications at CHOIS’ discretion.


Parental Involvement:

While CHOIS is pleased to host this graduation ceremony we recognize that this is the capstone of each family’s homeschool journey, and as such we would like to encourage parents to take a substantial role in the planning and implementing of the graduation ceremony. Please sign up to assist in at least one area of graduation preparation. We will free graduate parents from any duty the day of graduation.




Graduate Facebook Page:

CHOIS has created a private Facebook Page for graduate families. Please feel free to post comments, tips, social invitations and so forth on the CHOIS graduation page. We will include your family as members to the group once your application is complete, or you may be able to find us at Idaho State Homeschool Graduation.

Graduate Photos


Photo Submission:

Please help us personalize this year’s graduation ceremony by sending two digital, high-resolution photos of your graduate: 1) as a baby or young child and 2) a current photograph of the graduate. If you do not have digital baby photos, please scan a photo to send it digitally. These photos will be projected on a screen during the ceremony. Photos may be professional portraits or quality snapshots of the individual alone, not as a part of a group.


Make plans early to get senior photos taken.


Photo Quality for Senior Photos:

A headshot of each graduate will be included next to the graduate’s bio in the printed program so a high resolution digital image with a file size that is a minimum of 1 MB is required. If the senior picture submitted for the ceremony will not work as a headshot in the program due to angle or cropping limitations, we ask that you send a photo that will work as a headshot for the program in addition to the graduates’ baby and senior pictures.


Photo File Names:

Please email photos to graduation@chois.org and label photo files as follows

BABY PICTURE: lastname_firstname_­baby.jpg

SENIOR PICTURE: lastname_firstname­_senior.jpg

HEADSHOT: lastname_firstname_headshot.jpg (Only required if the senior picture won’t work as a headshot in the program)

Deadline for submission: January 1, 2017



Please keep photos modest: avoid low necklines, provocative poses, etc. The headshot photo for the program should have the graduate facing the camera straight on.


Photo Deadlines:

Photos must be emailed to graduation@chois.org by the registration deadline January 1, 2017 or your registration will be incomplete and void.

Graduation Announcements

CHOIS does not provide graduation announcements, but announcements can be purchased from HSLDA through its website at www.hslda.org/graduation


Over the years, the majority of graduates have chosen to make their own graduation announcements. Some are very elaborate, and some are simply photo cards with the graduation information included on them. We love seeing the variety!


We suggest that all announcements include a life verse or special quote and the following is an example of suggested wording:

The Idaho State Homeschool Class of 2017 is pleased to announce its graduation on Saturday, May twentieth at four o-clock in the afternoon.

The seniors and their parents invite you to attend this momentous occasion at the Brandt Center, 707 Fern St, Nampa, Idaho.

Graduate Speech Information

Student Speeches:

Submissions for the Senior Class Address will be accepted from participating graduates. The speech should be three to five minutes long, must be the student’s original work, and should reflect how being homeschooled through high school has impacted his/her life or helped shape who he/she is. Speeches will be judged on content, structure, and overall effectiveness. Note: Please be careful to highlight homeschooling without criticizing other methods of education. Two speeches will be selected.


Speech Submission Deadline:

Feb. 15, 2017

Parent Tribute Information

Parent Tribute: In order to make the ceremony even more personal and special we are excited to include a brief parent tribute that will be pre-recorded and played while graduates receive their diplomas.


Tribute Specifics

Each tribute will be 80 words or less, and shall require less than 30 seconds to be read aloud. The tribute should express love and encouragement for each graduate. Tributes must be submitted online no later than February 15, 2017.


Example Tributes

“Mary, You are our precious gift from God, our Sweetpea! Who knew the quiet, sleepy gift we brought home would grow into the cheery social, music loving young lady we have before us today. We love your bubbly, friendly self. Hearing you sing, and watching your caring concern for others brings us great joy. Keep trusting the Lord with your whole heart. Godspeed dear one.

, We are so incredibly proud of the man you are becoming. Your infections laugh and quick sense of humor brings joy and laughter to all you meet. God is doing a mighty work in you, John. May you always stand strong in Him and continue to pursue His plans for you. Congratulations, sweetheart on such a great accomplishment! We love you.

Graduation Program Information

Program Bios

The graduation program will include a brief biography and headshot photo of each graduate. Parents and graduates should work together to write the student bio. Bios should include the graduate’s full name, parent names, hometown, a list of graduate accomplishments, future plans, and favorite Scripture verse or quotation. Honor Cord recipients and Congressional Medalists will be listed in the program. Graduate bios must be submitted by February 1, 2017

 Here are two sample Graduate Biographies

 Mary Jane Smith

Daughter of Bob and Marie Smith, Emmett

Accomplishments: Mary has thoroughly enjoyed her high school years, and prior, pursuing her passion for volleyball. She played on varsity at Emmett High School for four years, in which she was awarded Best of Show her senior year. She also travelled to Haiti to help build homes for the homeless with her church youth group. She is an accomplished photographer and singer.

Future Plans: Mary will be attending Harvard where she will be playing on their volleyball team. She plans to study business and/or athletic training. She also hopes to marry a fellow athlete who laughs at her lame jokes and sings along with her in the car.

Favorite Scripture: Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid. –John 14:27

John Jacob Smith

Son of Christopher and Darla Smith, Coeur d’Alene

Accomplishments: Johnny has been playing the piano for ten years. He and his father have worked several months doing a ground up restoration of a classic ’64 Volkswagen bus. Johnny has accomplished 13 years of the AWANA program and is currently writing a novel.

Future plans: Johnny is looking forward to attending the College of Western Idaho where he plans to earn a certificate in automotive maintenance.

Favorite Verse: For me to live is Christ, and to die is gain. –Philippians 1:21.



Graduation Meeting Information

Mandatory Rehearsal

All graduates must arrive at graduation early with their caps and gowns on a hanger. We will run through the ceremony, take photos and spend a little time relaxing prior to the ceremony. All graduates will receive an email in April with information about the date, time and location.


Mandatory Day-Of Rehearsal

All graduates must arrive at graduation early with their caps and gowns on a hanger. We will run through the ceremony and spend a little time relaxing prior to the ceremony. All graduates will receive an email in April with information about the date, time and location.

Graduation Schedule at a Glance

Apply to participate: January 1, 2017

Photos Submitted: January 1, 2017

Program Bios Submitted: Feb. 1, 2017

Student Speeches: Feb. 15, 2017

Parent Tribute Submitted: February 15, 2017


There will be deadlines for nominating and voting upon guest speaker, cap and gown measurements, etc. Please be sure to read all of the emails from CHOIS.

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