Missouri Option Program

About the Missouri Option Program

The Missouri Option Program permits full-time, public school enrolled students who are at least 17 years of age. These students are at risk of dropping out or not graduating with their cohort group the opportunity to earn a standard high school diploma. Graduation through the Missouri Option Program is not dependent on Carnegie credit attainment. The Missouri Option Program is competency-based and approved by the State Board of Education. The program utilizes a high school equivalency exam as content mastery for graduation purposes. The exam sanctioned by the state for the Missouri Option program is the HiSET® test. Missouri Option students successfully passing the exam and completing all other program requirements are eligible to receive a high school diploma. The Missouri Option Program is an effective means to retain students, lower drop-out rates, and improve college and career readiness.

Missouri Option Program Application and Renewal

Missouri school districts and charter schools planning to operate a new Missouri Option Program may email a request to desemooption@dese.mo.gov. Ongoing programs are asked to complete the Missouri Option Program Assurance Standards annually for revised policy content and to provide updated program contact information. The Assurance Standards are located in the DESE web applications under menu item, Compliance Plans. User Managers must grant the designated Administrator a PT District Admin role and access to the Missouri Option Program Assurance Standards. The Administrator must login to DESE web applications and follow the directions to submit. The Assurance Standards are open throughout the year. For more information, contact the Missouri Option office at 573-751-3190 or 573-751-4426.

    Step 1: Select Compliance Plans from the menu.
    Step 2: Select planning document type, Missouri Option Program Assurance Standards.

The plan is submitted after reviewing and agreeing to the Assurance Standards. Please list the contact information of all staff affiliated with the program. The Compliance Plan for Missouri Option Programs is open throughout the year.

Missouri Option Guide

The updated Missouri Option Program and HiSet® Test Guide is now available as a Quick Link on the Missouri Option website: Missouri Option Program Guide.

Teacher Access to the HiSET Registration System

In order to access the HiSET® Student Registration System, a User ID is required. If you are a Missouri Option teacher, counselor, or administrator and will be registering students to test, please notify desemooption@dese.mo.gov for authorization. An initial username and password will be provided to set up an account in the HiSET® system as an Associate.

Missouri Option Workshop Information

Missouri Option new and experienced teacher workshops and program updates are presented each Summer as part of the Missouri Alternative Education Network (MAEN) Annual Conference. ​  Information and registration for this conference may be found at https://www.maen4kids.com/. 

Tips to Help Your HiSet Test Takers Succeed - Writing Test

Below are some helpful tips to help your test takers navigate through the writing test and review responses.

Remind test takers to review all responses once they come to the end of the test to ensure all questions, including the essay, have been answered.

The screen titled "End of Section - Time Remaining" is the last opportunity to return to the test and review responses. If the essay (Question 1) was skipped, the test taker MUST select "REVIEW" to go back and answer it. If they select "CONTINUE," they will proceed to the end of the test and will not be able to go back.

To return to the essay from the review screen, select Question 1 and then select "Go to Question." If any text has been entered into the essay, the status will show as "Answered." It is strongly recommended that test takers go back and review Question 1 regardless of status.

For more information, contact the Missouri Option office at 573-751-3190 or 573-751-4426.

Missouri Option Staff Contacts

Dale Wimer, Supervisor
Mailing Address:
Missouri Option Program
P.O. Box 480
Jefferson City, MO 65102-0480