Miguel Gutierrez Jr. / KUT

Three years ago, state lawmakers approved a pilot program in Austin that allows adults up to 50 years old to go back to school to earn their high school diplomas. And over the last 18 months, the Excel Charter School has graduated 75 former high school drop-outs.

While Texas law allows students up to 25 years old to enroll in high school, once a person turns 26, their options are limited to getting a GED.

Nathan Bernier, KUT News

Exams are over for most students as schools close their doors for the holidays. But the GED is being revamped Jan. 1, and testing centers around the country have seen floods of people hoping to finish the exam.

The GED has five parts, and many test-takers have completed only a portion of the exam. If they don’t complete it by the end of the year, their scores will be wiped clean and they’ll have to retake it.

The new version of the GED is expected to more rigorous – and more expensive.

Daniel Reese for KUT News

Following a national trend digitizing high school equivalency tests, Texas will only offer the GED test online come January. The State Board of Education approved some final changes to the new testing process Thursday as the state prepares for the transition.

The test will be entirely online, which means students need to be more computer literate.