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High School Equivalency (HSE) Testing Program

Adult Diploma Programs

The Massachusetts High School Equivalency Team oversees the operation of Adult Diploma Programs (ADP) at several locations in the Commonwealth. An ADP offers Massachusetts adults who did not graduate from high school a path towards earning a high school diploma.

These ADPs are funded by Adult and Community Learning Services (ACLS), a Unit within the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education. Candidates for an ADP must meet the same eligibility requirements as other ACLS-funded Adult Basic Education programs. However the course of study must be approved by, and the diplomas issued by, the ADP's local school district or private secondary school. The district or school may require additional or stricter eligibility requirements. Any diploma earned by ADP students must be an accredited, verifiable credential acceptable to colleges, universities, and employers. To review the ACLS eligibility requirements, go to Massachusetts Policies for Effective Adult Basic Education in Community Adult Learning Centers and Correctional Institutions.

There are two ADP models in use in Massachusetts:

  • An MCAS-preparation curriculum with the goal of the students' meeting or exceeding the Proficient threshold on required MCAS tests.
  • A curriculum approved by the school district and based on an Educational Proficiency Plan (EPP) for students who meet or exceed the Needs Improvement threshold on the MCAS but who have not achieved the Proficient threshold.

Upon the written request of the superintendent, the Commissioner of Education may for good cause waive one or more of the eligibility requirements for earning an Adult Diploma.

For more information on the MCAS Appeals process, go to MCAS Performance Appeals.

For more information on the MCAS scoring thresholds, go to Graduation Requirements.

For more information on Educational Proficiency Plans, go to College and Career Readiness: Educational Proficiency Plans.

For a list of current Massachusetts Adult Diploma Programs, go to Massachusetts Adult Diploma Programs.

ADP Portfolio Submissions

Last Updated: September 8, 2022

Contact Us

Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education
135 Santilli Highway, Everett, MA 02149

Voice: (781) 338-3000
TTY: (800) 439-2370


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