Graduate Registration Information
Thank you for your interest in the upcoming Senior High Graduate Recognition Ceremony. We are planning a special evening to honor senior high homeschooled graduates from across the state. The twenty-second annual recognition night will be held Friday, May 23, 2014, from 7:00 to 9:00 p.m. at Phoenix First Assembly, 13613 N. Cave Creek Road, Phoenix, AZ 85022. This event is free for friends and family to attend and open to the public.
NOTE: Certificates of recognition will be given to the graduates, which will be signed by the parent. AFHE does not provide diplomas nor does the organization verify that a student has completed their course work. The parent is responsible for creating the high school transcript and issuing a diploma to their graduate, if desired.
Registration Deadline: February 7, 2014
No late registrations can be accepted.
Registration Fee: $147.00
The registration fee covers the cost of the facility, cap/gown/tassel, the photo presentation, and two 5x7 individual photographs of the graduate receiving their certificate. Traditional caps and gowns are mandatory for all senior high graduates. Fees paid for the Senior High Graduate Recognition Ceremony are non-refundable and non-transferrable.
Optional Purchase - DVD of the Ceremony: $15.00
You will have the option to order DVDs of the ceremony for $15 each (shipping included) as part of ceremony registration. The ceremony will be professionally videotaped. DVDs may be pre-ordered with graduate registration or ordered at the ceremony. They will be mailed to the graduates approximately six weeks after the ceremony.
AFHE Membership Required
AFHE membership is required for all participating graduate families. If you are not a current AFHE member you will have the opportunity to join AFHE/renew your AFHE membership as part of ceremony registration. The membership fee is $25.
Clarification of Homeschooling
The AFHE Senior High Graduate Recognition Ceremony is open to graduating seniors who have been educated at home by their parents in accordance with Arizona Revised Statute §15-802 where the parent is the primary teacher. Those enrolled in a virtual charter school are not eligible to participate.
Graduates will wear caps and gowns (to be ordered by AFHE) over dress clothes with dress shoes, dress boots, or dress cowboy boots (no denim, no shorts, no sneakers/tennis shoes, no flip flops). Young men wearing a tie will wear their tie tucked inside the gown. No embellishments or personalization of caps and gowns will be permitted during the ceremony (this includes honor cords, decorations on the caps, etc.). This is mandatory for participation. The caps and gowns will belong to the graduates following the ceremony. Our committee does the ordering and delivering of them to the ceremony for the entire graduating class. Please contact us if further clarification is needed.
The volunteers have taken great care to make this ceremony momentous. Any graduate who fails to conduct himself/herself with proper decorum or refuses to follow the instructions of the convention committee will be promptly escorted out by the ushers.
Please help us personalize this year's graduation ceremony by sending two digital, high-resolution photos of your senior graduate: 1) as a baby or young child and 2) a current photograph of the graduate. If you do not have digital baby photos, you will need to scan a photo to send it digitally. These photos will be shared in a video presentation that is a highlight of the ceremony. Photos may be professional portraits or quality snapshots of the individual graduate (alone, not 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 name 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 video presentation 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 graduate's baby picture and senior picture.
Photo File Names
Please 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)
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 and shoulders must be clothed.
Submit Photos at the Time of Registration
Photos must be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org at the time of registration or your registration is incomplete.
Posters will be on display during the evening of the ceremony for guests to view. Please cut a poster board or foam board to the dimensions of 16” wide by 20” tall. Do not frame. Include favorite pictures and mementos on the poster that highlight your interests and accomplishments. Use your creativity so that your poster will reflect who you are. Please use photos that are modest (no swimwear, etc.). This is a reverent, formal, family event. Posters with inappropriate images will not be displayed at the ceremony. Make sure your name and hometown are listed prominently on the front. Uncluttered posters have proven to be more appealing and effective. Keep the poster lightweight so that it can be easily hung. Please bring your poster to the Friday afternoon rehearsal. Take your poster home when you leave after the ceremony. We cannot be responsible for posters left at the ceremony.
AFHE does not provide graduation announcements, but announcements can be purchased from HSLDA through their website at www.hslda.org if desired.
Submissions for the Senior Class Address will be accepted from participating graduates who have been homeschooled for all four years of high school. The speech should be 3 to 5 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, presentation, and overall effectiveness. Note: Please be careful to highlight homeschooling without criticizing other methods of education.
Speech Contest Submission Deadline
March 1, 2014
Musical performance auditions will be accepted from participating graduates. Applications and video recordings must be submitted by March 1, 2014. (Video recordings being submitted by postal mail should be postmarked no later than March 1.)
Musical Performance Submission Deadline
March 1, 2014
Please let us know in advance if special accommodations are needed for participating graduates. There is a spot on the online application form for "Additional Information."
Photographs taken by AFHE representatives at this event may appear in the Arizona Home Education Journal, on the AFHE website, AFHE social media pages, or in other AFHE publications at AFHE’s discretion.
In order to make the ceremony even more personal and special, we are excited to include a brief parent tribute that will be read by a designated reader (not the parent) as the graduate crosses the stage.
Parent Tribute to the Graduate
The parents of each graduate will write and submit a brief tribute expressing their love and encouragement for their child, which will be read by an AFHE representative as each graduate crosses the stage and poses for a photograph.
Tribute Submission Instructions
Tributes must be submitted as part of the application process no later than February 7, 2014.
Word count limit: 50 words
"Mary, we are so proud of all that you have accomplished and we are excited about what God is doing in your life. You are such a joy to our family and we love the way God’s love shines through your life."
"John, congratulations on this special day. You have worked so hard to finish high school and we are proud of your perseverance and diligence. You are a great example to your younger brothers and sisters. You have surpassed our hopes and dreams for you! "
NOTE: The following email was sent out on January 7, 2014 with a change to the plans for the ceremony in response to some helpful feedback that was shared with us by several of our members.
EMAIL RE: 2014 SR GRAD CEREMONY CHANGE
We are pleased to announce that the photographer we are using will be able to have the senior grad photos printed and ready for pick up right after the ceremony. The graduate photo is included with the ceremony registration fee.
For those families who would like a photo with their graduate, the photographer will have an area set up where you can have your family picture taken following the ceremony. These family photos will be uploaded by the photographer to his website. Information will be provided by email with the web link and a password you can use to purchase copies of the family photo. Family photos will not be available the night of the ceremony.
Mandatory Rehearsal May 23 @ 1:40 PM
The ceremony is a choreographed event. All participating graduates are required to attend the rehearsal Friday, May 23, from 2:00-4:00 PM, at Phoenix First Assembly. It is critical that all graduatst are present for the rehearsal—on time! All graduates must arrive by 1:40 PM to get checked in, turn in their posters, and pay for dinner if ordering the on-site dinner option. Do not be late. Following the rehearsal, musical performers and speech contest winners will remain for a sound check.
In April, you will receive an email with additionall information and details.
Dinner Option On-Site
One of the many benefits of having this year's ceremony at Phoenix First Assembly is that we can serve food. We will be taking orders for a pizza and salad dinner when graduates check in. The cost will be $5 per person and will include 2 slices of pizza, salad, a bottle of water, and a cookie. Please be sure to bring cash with you if you plan to order dinner from us. It will be served following the rehearsal, before putting on gowns. There are some fast food restaurants not too far from the church that graduates are welcome to go to if they prefer. Or they can bring a sack dinner or snacks.
Things to Have Ready Before Starting Registration
- The graduate’s photos to submit by email
- Graduate's accomplishments, future plans, and favorite Bible verse/life motto
- Parent tribute to the graduate
Registration is open from November 1, 2013 through February 7, 2014 and will take place entirely online.
Please use the following link to register between November 1 and February 7.