What are Keystone’s admissions requirements?
Regardless of grade level, students must have a working knowledge of the English language.
We recommend that students enrolling in Keystone Middle School have completed 5th grade and are at 5th grade reading level. Generally parents know best when their child is ready for middle school, but if you have questions you may contact our knowledgeable Student Services Representatives at 1-800-255-4937.
Students must have completed eighth grade as evidenced by a school transcript, a homeschooling portfolio, or standardized test scores indicating at or above eighth grade level performance in all subject areas. For students who do not have any other documentation for academic admissions to the ninth grade (e.g., prior homeschool students), the following guidelines will apply:
- If a student is 14 years or older, he or she is considered “age appropriate” for ninth grade and may enroll in Keystone’s high school program, using a birth certificate or other official documentation as proof.
- If a student is under 14 years of age, he or she must show proof of eighth-grade completion through one of these options:
- A middle school grade report or transcript
- A certificate of eighth-grade completion
- Standardized test scores showing eighth-grade achievement or higher (IOWA, ACT Explore, state testing, etc.)
- A homeschool portfolio
- Students and their families can speak with a counselor to address other circumstances.
Does The Keystone School have an age limit?
No, Keystone is open to students of all ages. Our mission at Keystone is to help students from all backgrounds and personal situations achieve their individual potential, so we make every attempt to enroll students that are a fit for our program. For further information or to get started, please speak with a Student Service Representative at 1-800-255-4937.
Can I enroll my child in Keystone if we live outside of the United States?
Yes. Keystone has demonstrated success with students from all backgrounds, situations, and geographic locations — we have students in nearly 100 countries! If you are taking courses online you will have 24-hour-a-day access to your curriculum regardless of where you live and will receive teacher feedback on exams within 3 business days. If you are thinking of enrolling in Keystone to earn a high school diploma, we need to evaluate how your prior schooling transfers to Keystone. To get this started, mail your transcript — or home school portfolio — to The Keystone School, 920 Central Road, Bloomsburg, PA 17815, fax it to 570-784-2129, or email it to firstname.lastname@example.org. Be sure that your transcript is in English, that it demonstrates a level of work (credits, for example), and that it shows a level of mastery (grades, for example).
Do you accept transcripts from foreign countries? (applies to high school only)
Yes, please follow these guidelines:
- Mail (do not fax) true, certified copies of all of your documents along with a $125 fee* (in the form of check, money order, or credit card) to convert your transcripts into U.S. educational system credits.
- Include a contact name, address, and phone number for your State, Provincial, or National Department of Education so that we can contact them as needed to verify your records and/or obtain information regarding their specific system of granting educational credit.
- The evaluation process will begin when the transcripts and the fee of $125 are received by Keystone.
- Evaluation of foreign/international transcripts can take up to 30 days depending on the complexity and research required.
Once the evaluation is complete, we will contact you to let you know which credits will apply towards a Keystone diploma. We require students to take a minimum of five Keystone courses (one in each core area plus an elective) in order to graduate from Keystone.
If you have any questions along the way, please contact us at 1-800-255-4937.
*The $125 fee covers the foreign/international transcript evaluation. Keystone outsources foreign/international transcript evaluations to ensure quality.
Will previously earned credits transfer to Keystone? (applies to high school only)
Possibly. Most credits earned at accredited high schools and homeschool programs transfer into Keystone. Before you enroll, however, mail your transcript to The Keystone School, 920 Central Road, Bloomsburg, PA 17815, fax it to 570-784-2129, or email it to email@example.com. Our Student Services Representatives will let you know which credits will transfer into our program and which courses you'll need to take from us to earn a Keystone diploma.
What is your deadline for enrollment?
Keystone fits students’ lives by allowing them to study on their own time and at their own pace. That extends to enrollment – feel free to enroll whenever you like by phone, on the web, or by mail. There is no specific time when you must enroll.
How long will it take for me to receive my books?
Your books should arrive 7-10 business days after you enroll; if you enroll in online courses, you can begin your work in a couple of days after receiving a password and access to your courses.
When will I be able to start if I enroll today?
If you are taking online middle or high school courses, you may begin exploring your course as soon as you receive your password from us — normally a couple of days from when you enroll! If you are taking high school correspondence courses, you can start your studies as soon as your materials arrive through the mail — generally in fewer than 10 days.
How do I enroll?
There are 3 easy ways to enroll:
- Call our Student Services department — 1-800-255-4937
- Visit our Online Enrollment System
- Fax Enrollment Form to the following number — 570-784-2129
Download a high school enrollment form or a middle school enrollment form.
If you plan to earn a Keystone diploma:
If you plan to earn a Keystone diploma and already have completed high school coursework, the first step is to forward your transcript from your previous school so that we can evaluate how many of your courses will transfer. Please include your current address and phone number when sending in your transcript. We receive transcripts by email, fax, and by postal mail. (All our contact information is below.)
Keystone will complete a free transcript evaluation to determine which courses transfer to Keystone and which courses remain to be taken toward graduation. We require a student to take a minimum of five courses with Keystone (one in each core area plus an elective) in order to graduate from Keystone. The evaluation will be mailed back to you within seven to ten days along with a Keystone catalog, enrollment form, and payment plan information. We will call you at that point to walk you through the evaluation and the remainder of the enrollment process.
If you have any questions along the way, feel free to call us toll free at 1-800-255-4937.
Is The Keystone School accredited?
Yes, Keystone's demonstrated record of success has earned it recognition from two of the leading accrediting boards in the country, the AdvancED/Northwest Accreditation Commission and the Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools.
Keystone High School is also licensed by the Pennsylvania State Board of Private Licensed Schools and authorized by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania as a diploma-granting institution.
You can be confident that your Keystone education is of the highest quality and that other accredited schools widely accept the work you do. Although we cannot guarantee that Keystone credits are transferable, we rarely have an issue. Should you have a doubt, you should contact your local school officials directly or contact a Keystone Student Services Representative (1-800-255-4937) to work with you and your local school officials to determine acceptance of Keystone credits.
If my child receives a Keystone diploma, will he/she be accepted to a college or university?
Thousands of parents have confidence in The Keystone School because of its demonstrated record of student success. Keystone High School graduates have been accepted to over 140 colleges and universities including Stanford, Yale, Duke, Rice, and Notre Dame; military academies like West Point; state university systems like the University of Washington; and many other two- and four-year colleges nationwide.
If our prior students are any indication, your child has a great likelihood of getting into college with Keystone.
Will the military accept Keystone graduates?
The Army, Navy, and Marines are allowed to accept 10% of enlistees from Tier 2 schools with a minimum score of 50 on the Armed Forces Qualification Test (AFQT). The Air Force will only accept enlistees from Tier 1 schools. Keystone is currently listed as a Tier 2 school, and many of our graduates have gone on to start a military career. Schools can be re-categorized by the military at any time, so we recommend that you check with your local recruiter for specifics. Students can gain Tier 1 status by successfully completing 15 credit hours of college courses. Most students can earn this in one semester at their local community college.
If my child decided to go back to the public school system, will he/she be accepted? Will Keystone credits transfer?
The Keystone School is accredited by the AdvancED/Northwest Association of Accredited Schools, as well as the Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools. This means that our program meets the academic and administrative standards required for admission to colleges and universities, and for transfer to other high schools. Keystone High School is also licensed by the Pennsylvania Department of Education as a privately licensed high school. This allows the school to grant high school diplomas that are recognized by colleges, universities, military organizations, and employers.
Although students rarely have any problem transferring Keystone credits back to their local high school, Keystone cannot guarantee that every credit will transfer back to every high school. Should you have a doubt, you should contact your local school official directly or contact Keystone to work with you and your local school officials to determine acceptance of Keystone credits.
If I choose Keystone, will my child be able to maintain social contact?
Absolutely. Keystone students thrive in a learning community, connecting with teachers and other students whenever they wish.
Social contact is a key element within the Keystone learning community. Online courses provide opportunities for students to connect with others through emails and discussion boards.
Are the courses self-paced?
Yes, students can work at any time and complete as much or as little work as they need. There are no specific due dates, so the student is able to work ahead if needed, or spend extra time on lessons that are more difficult. Although the courses are self-paced, students are required to complete each course within 12 months from the date of enrollment. Keystone Plus requires more specific pacing requirements; please refer to the Keystone Plus area of the website for more information.
Do students receive report cards?
Students will automatically receive an Academic Record upon completion of their enrollment but may also request an Academic Record any time.
Can students enroll in courses above or below their grade level?
Yes, but middle school students are limited to middle school courses and high school students to high school courses.
Do you require that students enroll in a full course load or do they have the option of enrolling in individual courses?
Students can enroll in a full course load or in individual courses.
Students choose to enroll in individual courses for different reasons:
- To gain experience with online learning
- To take courses that aren't available in their regular school curriculum
- To get ahead in their studies
- To make up for missed classes
How do you work with children who are gifted?
If you want a more challenging program of study, Keystone's innovative, flexible, student-focused education is for you. Keystone students study on their own time and at their own pace, so to the extent that you want to be challenged, the pace of other students is not a factor. Keystone offers advanced courses at both the high school and middle school levels.
How do you work with children who have special needs?
Our program allows students to study on their own time and at their own pace, which helps to accommodate many special situations. In addition, our certified teachers are trained to work with students from a variety of backgrounds and with varying educational needs. However, we recognize that each individual is unique and may have a need that we've not faced before.
If you have a particular situation you are concerned with, your best course of action is to speak with our Student Services Representatives directly at 1-800-255-4937.
Can I get my GED through Keystone?
No, but you can get something that is much more valuable -- a Keystone High School diploma. A Keystone diploma is widely recognized by colleges, universities, and employers.
Attaining your Keystone diploma is an indication that you have completed an academic program of the highest standards and qualities.
Can students work at an accelerated pace and move on to the next grade?
Yes. Keystone helps you to reach your individual potential by encouraging you to study on your own time and at your own pace.
Keep in mind, however, that Keystone policy states that you may not complete a course in fewer than eight weeks from the date of enrollment. (This policy is based on a belief that a course of any material value takes a minimum amount of time for the student to properly absorb, apply, and be assessed on the content.) Contact Student Services at 1-800-255-4937 for more information on working at an accelerated pace.
What kind of computer do I need to take online courses?
You can take our online classes using either a PC or a Mac. As of right now, Linux, iOS, and Android are not officially supported as an operating system by Keystone. If you are running a current version of Firefox and a current version of Adobe Flash Player, our courses should work just fine; however, there may be issues. If such issues come up, we cannot provide support for them at this time.
How much time should parents expect to spend helping their student?
It depends on the individual student, but a parent should expect that students will need help with planning, lots of encouragement, and general oversight.
Does Keystone offer support for families?
Yes, besides academic support from our certified teachers, the Keystone learning coach will contact families with students enrolled in four or more courses to help them get started.
Parents will also receive progress reports and if your child is enrolled in online high school or middle school courses you will have access to real-time student progress through a parent observer account.
Note: Progress reports are emailed to parents, so please confirm that you have provided a current, accurate email address at the time of enrollment.
What are Keystone Progress Reports and what kind of information will I see on the Keystone Progress Reports?
The Keystone Progress Reports are sent out every other week. These reports will give you an update on the progress your student has made
- in the last two weeks, and
- since they started each course
The progress reports will show you the following information:
- Original Enrollment Date – Courses are due within one calendar year from the original enrollment date, so please be sure that your student is completing work regularly and on pace to finish the course within 12 months.
- Last Login Date – The date that your student last logged in to their online course (not available for correspondence courses).
- Number of Logins – The number of times your student logged in to each online course during the reporting period (the last two weeks).
- Days Since Last Submitted Item – The number of days since your student last submitted work to be evaluated by the teacher. There may be a slight delay of up to three days before submitted work is reported on the progress reports.
- Score to Date* – The average score earned on all weighted (required) assessments in the course.
- % of Course Complete – The % of required coursework your student has completed in the course. Practice activities do not count towards the % of course complete.
Who can get Keystone Progress Reports?
Any parent with a student enrolled in our program can receive progress reports. Please call Student Services at 1-800-255-4937 to ensure that your email address is on file and ready to receive progress reports. Progress reports can only be sent to ONE email address. If multiple people would like to receive progress reports, we recommend setting up a free joint email account that can be shared.
How can I request Keystone Progress Reports?
To receive progress reports, all you need to do is to provide a parent email address that will be entered into the student record. The next time progress reports are sent out after we have your parent email address in our system, you should receive a report.
If you do not receive a progress report for your student within 21 days of enrollment, please contact Student Services at 1-800-255-4937 or firstname.lastname@example.org to confirm that we have your correct email address.
**PLEASE NOTE: Progress Reports can only be sent to ONE email address.
When will I receive my first progress report?
Progress reports are sent every other Monday, and you should receive the first progress report on the next report date following the time that you provide your email address to Keystone. Please contact Student Services at 1-800-255-4937 immediately after enrolling your student to ensure that we have the correct email address on file for progress reports. It should take no longer than two weeks to receive your report.
Why am I not receiving the progress reports? I used to receive them and now I don't.
We have found that some email services will reject our emailed progress reports as SPAM because of the PDF attachment. To help avoid this, we ask that ALL parents, regardless of which email service you use, add the email address email@example.com to your email address book and/or Safe List.
By doing this, you should not have any problem receiving the progress reports. However, if you signed up for progress reports and are not receiving them on the first Monday of each month, please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org or call our Student Services Team at 1-800-255-4937.
What is a Parent Observer Account?
If you have a student enrolled in at least one online course, you can request an observer account. Additionally, observer accounts can be set up for school counselors or anyone else that the parent designates. Since the account is a "passive" account, multiple people can observe the student's progress without the risk of interfering with their work.
Who do I contact if I have questions about the Keystone Progress Reports?
If you have any questions about the Keystone Progress Reports, you can send an email to email@example.com or you can call our Student Services Team at 1-800-255-4937.
What can I do with a Parent Observer Account?
The Parent Observer Account allows you to see the following information:
- Activities, assignments, tests, and quizzes that have been completed by the student, and when they were completed
- The student's grades on completed coursework
- Activities the student has yet to complete
This account allows parents to see if their student is progressing or has become inactive by not submitting coursework for an extended period of time. Please note: Parents cannot view the actual work submitted by the student.
How can I request a Parent Observer Account?
Parents of new students enrolled in online courses will receive a Parent Observer Account within 14 days of completion of the following requirements:
- Observer accounts are only available for online courses, so your student must be enrolled in at least one online course.
- We must have your parent email address on file, otherwise we will not know where to send the observer account information.
If you are a parent of a student who enrolled before August 1st, 2009 and you do not have a Parent Observer Account, or if you enrolled a student after this date and still don't have an account, please contact Student Services at 1-800-255-4937 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
How long does it take to get a Parent Observer Account?
It can take up to 10 business days (or 14 days) to have an observer account created and linked to a particular student. If you have requested an account and have not received a response within 14 days, please call Student Services at 1-800-255-4937 or send an email to email@example.com.
My student has been working on his/her courses, why is his/her Score to Date 0.0%?
The "Score to Date" only counts required (weighted) assessments. Your student may be completing practice activities early on in the course, but until your student completes a weighted assessment that counts towards his/her final grade, there will be no score to report on the progress reports.
*The score reported on the progress reports is an estimate. No course grade is final until received on an official Keystone transcript. Please call Student Services at 1-800-255-4937 if you have questions or concerns about the score reported on the progress report.
Who do I contact if I have questions about the Parent Observer Account?
If you have questions about the Parent Observer Account, you can send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org or you can call our Student Services Team at 1-800-255-4937.
Why does it say "Access Denied" when I try to view one of my student's courses through my observer account?
This is a known issue that can sometimes arise when a new course is entered into the Blackboard system, or if an existing course is updated. Please send an email to email@example.com with your observer account name, your student's full name, and the course you cannot access.
This is often fixed within days of you notifying us about the issue, but can take up to a week or more.
How do I find my student's grades using my observer account?
After you receive your username and password, you can log into your account. The list of courses will be on the right hand side of the screen. Click on the course you would like to check first. On the left hand side of the screen, directly below the red tabs there will be a link for "Observer Tools." Click on that and then click on "View Grades."
What if my student needs more help with a course?
All Keystone courses offer teacher support when students need it. Keystone Plus, available for all high school core, AP, and select world language courses, provides additional support. Teachers proactively initiate meetings with students and are available during weekly office hours. Learning coaches provide regular mentoring and assist with course pacing and scheduling, as well as academic intervention when needed.
What is considered a full course load?
Five courses is considered a full course load. Four core courses, one in each of the subject areas: Language Arts, Math, Science and Social Studies, plus one elective course. Core courses cover a full academic year of content (36 weeks) while electives cover 18 weeks of content.
For high school students, 5 or 6 credits are considered a full course load.
Do you offer courses that cover half an academic year/half credit?
Core and advanced courses cover a full academic year (180 hours) of content while electives cover half an academic year (90 hours) of content.
Most high school courses are available in half credits.
How many hours can a student expect to spend on each course?
Students should expect to spend about 180 hours on a full year/full credit course and about 90 hours on a half year/half credit course. However, students who are gifted in a particular subject may be able to complete a course in less time, while other students might need to spend more time in some courses.
Which foreign languages do you offer? Can I take a language somewhere else and transfer it to Keystone?
Keystone currently offers French, Spanish and German to middle school students. Once students reach high school, they can also take Chinese, Japanese, and Latin. These courses are available online, providing you with interactive tools and lessons that are specifically designed to improve your language skills and comprehension abilities. If you have taken language courses somewhere else, fax or mail us your transcript and our Student Services Representative will work with you to determine if your credits transfer over to Keystone. Should you have questions in the meantime, feel free to call our Student Services Representatives directly at 1-800-255-4937.
How am I graded?
Keystone uses several types of assessments including practice quizzes, short answer and essay questions, objective multiple choice exams, and oral examinations (when appropriate). This mix provides the independent learner with checkpoints to monitor his or her progress through each course. Students are also required to practice various styles of writing to help ensure learning and develop communication abilities that they'll need after high school.
Do I have to take courses in a certain order?
You don't have to, but many subjects are covered through a sequence of courses. Let's use math as an example. Some students will start with Refresher Math, move on to Algebra 1, then on to Geometry, then on to Algebra 2, etc. Students move through courses at their own speed, and then go on to the next level when they're ready. All Keystone courses are designed to balance the introduction of new information with the repetition of learned information.
High school students can choose between online and correspondence format. What is the difference?
Keystone High School's online courses offer students more interaction with teachers and three business days turnaround on assessments. Online courses include engaging interactive activities, supporting graphics, and flash demonstrations to enhance the learning experience.
Keystone High School correspondence courses are paper-based courses delivered primarily by postal mail. They are available for students who require or prefer a more traditional distance learning experience. For example, correspondence courses may better meet the educational needs of students who are living in remote locations where internet access may be unreliable.
Either format will provide the student with a sound, accredited, self-directed program of study that helps them achieve their potential.
Do you offer correspondence courses for middle school students?
No, our middle school courses are engaging, interactive online courses designed specifically for middle school students.
Can high school students mix online and correspondence courses?
Yes, feel free to mix online and correspondence courses.
If I am enrolled in a high school correspondence course can I fax my exams to you instead of mailing them?
Yes. Students can fax their exams rather than mailing them, but please be sure to number the pages and send them in order.
What are AP® courses?
AP<sup>®</sup> courses are offered to high school juniors and seniors in many subject areas including Science, Math, Social Sciences and Language Arts. These courses offer advanced students the opportunity to progress through a course with more challenging homework and exams, beyond even Honors course study. AP<sup>®</sup> exams are administered every spring by the College Board in your neighborhood during the month of May, and through the exams, students have the opportunity to earn college credit and/or advanced standing at most colleges and universities.
Does Keystone have certified teachers?
Yes, our teachers are a fundamental part of our school. Parents can have confidence that Keystone High School's teachers will help their children achieve their potential.
Keystone High School faculty members are all certified teachers with an average of seven years of instructional experience. More than 50 percent of Keystone High School faculty members have earned master's or doctoral degrees in education or areas of instructional specialty. More than 85 percent of Keystone High School's faculty members are "highly-qualified" as determined by the criteria established in the federal No Child Left Behind Act.
Keystone takes pride in how its students thrive in a learning community, connecting with teachers, other students, and parents whenever they wish. Some students prefer to engage their teacher in a limited fashion, while others seek a deeper relationship with their instructor.
There are many ways for students to contact their teachers. All students can connect with their teachers by phone, fax, email, or in traditional correspondence.
Are teachers different for correspondence vs. online courses?
Sometimes. Regardless of which format they teach, all of our instructors are certified and knowledgeable in their subject area. Their focus in all cases is the same: to help you learn, grow, and achieve your individual potential.
How many times can students contact their teachers?
There is no limit to the number of times you can contact your teacher. It will ultimately be determined by your needs as you manage and organize your studies.
We encourage you to build a working relationship with your teacher that includes instructional support and advice when and if you need it.
How much is Keystone tuition?
Do you offer payment plans?
Do you offer discounts for students enrolled in a full course load?
Does tuition include textbooks?
Not all Keystone courses require a textbook, but whenever a textbook or a workbook is required, it is included in the tuition. Please refer to our course catalog for details.
Are there limits around how quickly or slowly I can finish a course?
Possibly. If you need to temporarily stop your studies for emergencies or medical situations, contact our Student Services Department at 1-800-255-4937 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
What are the technical requirements for online courses?
Our online courses are designed to work on modern browsers and operating systems. Please use the recommendations below to ensure that your computer is properly configured for our online curriculum.
Platform Operating system Browsers PC Microsoft Windows XP or later Firefox Extended Support Release (ESR) is recommended for stability, but both the ESR and final release channel are supported Internet Explorer 8 or 9 (Windows)(Must not be in compatibility mode) Google Chrome stable channel Macintosh Apple Macintosh OS X 10.5 or later Firefox Extended Support Release (ESR) is recommended for stability, but both the ESR and final release channel are supported Safari 4 or higher (Mac OSX) Google Chrome – is not recommended
We recommend using one of the above browsers for Blackboard 9.1.
NOTE: When using Windows, if you are using a 64-bit browser, you need to install 64-bit Java to match. If you're running a 32-bit browser, then you'll need to install 32-bit Java.
Please note that most of our online courses contain Flash, which is not supported in Apple's mobile operating system (iOS). This makes our courses incompatible with iPads (and iPhones).
The following requirements must also be met for Blackboard 9.1:
Popup Blocking Disabled
Operating Systems: Windows XP, Vista, and 7
Macintosh OS X 10.5, 10.6, and 10.7
RAM: 512MB or higher Resolution: 1024 X 576 or higher Media: Soundcard and Speakers/Headphones
Microphone required for certain courses
Plugins: Sun Java 7
Flash Player Version 10 or higher
QuickTime Version 7 or higher
Real Player required for certain courses
Jaws 11 or higher (for accessibility)