Real Answers from Real Pilots

Becoming a commercial pilot if you are homeschooled

My son is homeschooled and would like to become a commercial pilot. From what I have heard, more collages are accepting home schooler’s and their homeschool transcripts, do to their high education, self motivation and good work ethic. The online homeschool program we are doing is not thru the public school and is not accredited towards a diploma. What will my son need from his homeschool high school education to be able to go into a flight school?

Rachel,

To be successful in aviation your son will need a 4yr college degree. I don’t believe he’ll have any issues getting into flight school it’s college you need to figure out.

Adam

Rachel,

That depends what you mean by flight school? If you mean an aviation college, then you will need to contact admissions at the respective colleges to inquire about their requirements.

If you mean your local flight school at a nearby airport (mom and pop flight school) there is typically no HS diploma requirement for enrollment.

If you mean ATP, then your son will need to meet ATP’s enrollment requirements which can be found on ATP’s website.

Now as far as your son’s future career down the road, as Adam said, in order to be successful a 4-yr degree will be required at the major airline level.

We recommend obtaining the degree before flight school no matter what for many reasons. It seems to be the most successful path. Not to discredit your son’s work ethic, I believe you when you say he is highly educated and has a strong work ethic. People just seem to excel better during flight training when they enroll with a degree under their belt. Plus, since a degree is required at the major airline level anyway, might as well knock the degree out while still in school mode.

But of course, as you can see on ATP’s website, ATP currently only requires applicants to have at least a HS diploma or GED.

Tory

Rachel,

I am a bit surprised that your son will not have any kind of diploma. ATP requires a high school diploma or a GED, although they might grant an exception. The airlines will want to see a diploma or GED as well, or a college degree.

Chris

I was homeschooled and was able to get an official diploma. In my state, the parents essentially set up a “private school” and can deliver their student a diploma. I would keep looking into that.

-Jack