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Office of Undergraduate Admission
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Information Regarding Online Correspondence High Schools

Many families have opted to have their children educated through Online Correspondence High Schools. Many of these online high schools have tried to represent themselves as having national accreditation or accreditation by a post-secondary accreditation body.  There is no national high school jurisdiction, nor is there any kind of multi-state or national accreditation of a high school.  High school accreditation is solely under the jurisdiction of the particular state government.

SUNY New Paltz will evaluate an online correspondence high school applicant using the same admission critiera as is used for all other freshmen applicants. 

If accepted, the applicant and family must be aware that New York State, through the New York State Department of Education and the New York State Board of Regents, does not approve correspondence study, including online, as equivalent to a high school diploma for New York State residents. 

Correspondence study and online diplomas are not valid for students who were New York State residents at the time they received the online diploma.  New York State school districts are prohibited from recognizing correspondence or online programs of high school study as fulfilling the New York State requirements for completion of an approved course of high school study.

New York State residents who have attained a high school education/diploma through an online correspondence high school are not eligible to receive:

  •   New York State Tuition Assistance (TAP), Excelsior Scholarship, STEM  Scholarship, TeachNY scholarship, 9/11 scholarship.
  •   Many Federal financial aid programs.
  •   An associate's or bachelor's degree from a private or public college or university located within New York State.

New York State residents may acquire recognized high school graduation through the following options:

  •  Successful completion of the New York State TASC(GED) exam;
  •  Successful completion of the 24-credit hour program in accordance with 8 NYCRR Section 3.47(a)(2)(ii)(d);
  •  Successful completion of either the Accuplacer or CELSA Ability to Benefit test.

Questions regarding correspondence and online high school diplomas should be directed to:

New York State Education Department
High School Equivalency Office
PO Box 7348
Albany, New York 12224
(518) 474-4906

Out-of-state residents should refer to the policies and regulations on correspondence and online high school diplomas established by their home state education departments.



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