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Catholic Homeschool Articles, Advice & Resources

Do High School Students Need Science Labs?


Seton Counselors answer timely questions including: Are science labs required and must we complete all assignments before re-enrolling?

Do high school students need to do science labs? What are the requirements for submitting labs?

Only students seeking the Advanced Diploma are required to do labs. Those students need to do labs for three of their four science courses.

Labs are recommended for Physical Science, Chemistry, and Biology and may also be done for Physics.

The Apologia Physical Science and Chemistry textbooks contain the labs, and Apologia makes it easy to find materials for these labs at reasonable prices. The lab materials are also available through

We have just come out with an excellent lab manual for Seton’s Biology for Life textbook.

Biology for Life and Saxon Physics lab manuals are available through

We also have a Biology dissection kit for sale at Dissections, however, are not required.

Directions for reporting and submitting labs are within the MySeton online course resources. For Biology, find these resources within, located on your MySeton page.

If you would like to do more elaborate labs, you may consult

– Manuel Vicente, High School Science

How can I keep my children reading over the summer?

Consider joining Seton’s Summer Reading Club! We have recommended book lists available for students in Pre-K through high school, so there is something for everyone. The club is a fun way to motivate students during the summer, boost their reading skills, and introduce them to great literature.

– Christina Nutt, Elementary Counselor

Do we need to complete all of the assignments in our current grade before re-enrolling in the next grade?

One of the great benefits of homeschooling is the flexibility that it provides. The amount of flexibility, though, is greatly determined by the homeschool regulations for your state. Once you understand your state’s regulations, you can decide what work to complete for your student to progress to the next grade level.

For elementary students: If you require a grade report for your elementary student, the student must complete all assignments graded by Seton.

If you do not require a grade report for your elementary student, the only assignments you should complete are those needed to ensure your student’s future success.

In either case, Seton does not require that you have a complete grade report for the current academic year before re-enrolling your student.

For high school students: High school students who would like a Seton diploma and have unfinished courses going back more than a year are NOT eligible for re-enrollment. In other words, a diploma-seeking high schooler wishing to enroll in 11th grade must have all required 9th-grade assignments completed, submitted, and graded before enrolling in 11th grade.

This policy applies only to high schoolers seeking a Seton diploma. It does not apply to K-8 students or non-diploma-seeking high schoolers.

– Laura Fusto, Elementary Counselor

Does a student need to take the honors version of American Literature to receive the Academic or Advanced Academic Diploma?

No. Students intending to graduate with either the Academic or Advanced Academic Diploma do not have to take the honors version of American Literature. Completing the regular American

Literature course is sufficient for both diploma tracks.

– Sean O’Connor, High School English

Would you explain how dual enrollment courses work?

Dual Enrollment allows high school students to take college courses and earn both college and high school credits. However, you must follow some rules to take advantage of this option.

Colleges may have age or grade restrictions and seek the high school’s permission, so families should check with the college’s admissions office to determine if they can use dual enrollment courses toward their high school requirements.

Seton requires students to take all religion/theology, English, and social studies courses from Seton. Biology must also be from Seton, but other science, math, and foreign language courses are acceptable as dual enrollment courses and electives.

Once a dual enrollment course is accepted by the college and by Seton, the family should let Seton’s counselors know so it may be noted in the student’s file.

After completing the course, have a college transcript sent to to record the credit for graduation purposes.

A three or four-credit college course will earn full high school credit. A college course of fewer than three credits will earn a high school half-credit.

– Gene McGuirk, High School Academic Counselor

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