This article was originally published in The Notebook. In August 2020, The Notebook became Chalkbeat Philadelphia.
Philadelphia has several alternative pathways to earn a diploma for students who are over-age, undercredited, or have dropped out.
Here are some alternative educational options outside of the traditional classroom environment. Students should contact the School District’s Re-engagement Center at 440 N. Broad St. for a complete list of programs (215-400-6700).
Type of program
Examples of programs/sites
Sample eligibility requirements
Accelerated high schools
Give over-age and undercredited students an opportunity to get on track to graduate in 3 years or less.
El Centro de Estudiantes
One Bright Ray Community High School
Ombudsman Northwest and South
Vary by program
Provide GED preparation, college access information, and college preparation.
GED To College Success Program at 1199C
GED To College at Temple University
GED To College (G2C) by YESPhilly
17 or older
Not in school
Want to enroll in college
upon attaining GED
Gateway to College
Offer dual enrollment, allowing students who have dropped out of school to earn their high school diploma and college credit simultaneously. Scholarship pays for college tuition, fees, and books.
Community College of Philadelphia
Ages 16-21, dropped out of school
No more than 21 high school credits
At least an 8th-grade reading level
Educational Options Program
Allow students and adults over age 17 to continue earning credits towards a high school diploma. Classes are held between 3 and 6:30 pm. Participants may earn 6 to 9 credits each year.
Must have more than 8 high school credits
Not enrolled in a regular day school
Structured environments with personalized learning programs for students who have been expelled, transferred for serious disciplinary issues, or returned from court-sponsored placement.
PLA North and South
Phase 4 Learning Center – Hunting Park
Grades 6-12 or 9-12