Saddleback College Offering Students Free High School Equivalency Classes in English and Spanish Plus Free College Classes this Spring Semester

For Immediate Release: 
January 5, 2021

In an effort to help people gain their high school equivalency diplomas and change their lives for the better, Saddleback College is offering tuition-free, online High School Equivalency (HSE) preparation classes this Spring semester. These classes are taught in both English and Spanish and are designed to ensure that students pass all sections of the HiSET®or GED.

In addition, students who register for Saddleback College’s High School Equivalency preparation classes are eligible for tuition-free college-level vocational or academic classes and/or non-credit classes with counselor appointment and approval. These tuition-free classes can lead to certificates or associate degrees in early childhood education, certified nursing assistant, administrative assistant, computer information management, electronic technology, computer networking and more.

“Our goal is to assist students become familiar with Saddleback College while in the HSE program so that they can quickly move into courses that will position them to earn a certificate or degree and get ready for a new career,” said Sue Donelson, Saddleback College’s  Director of Adult Education.

Saddleback’s HSE classes prepare students in the subjects that they will be tested on in the official exam: Math, Science, Social Studies, and Language Arts (Reading and Writing). In addition to offering tuition-free classes, Saddleback’s HSE preparation program offers free initial assessment exams to help students determine readiness and the amount of preparation support needed to pass the official HiSET® or GED state exam in English and Spanish.

“We are committed to supporting students throughout their educational journey despite the challenging and uncertain circumstances we are all facing,” said Dr. Karima Feldhus, Executive Dean of Extended Learning at Saddleback College. “A high school diploma or equivalent is a necessity in today’s competitive job market and passing the HSE exam and completing college-level classes will position students for life-long success.”

The wage potential for workers with a high school diploma or equivalency certificate is substantial, with full-time workers without a high school diploma or equivalency certificate earning an average weekly wage of $592, or less than $15 per hour, compared to an average weekly wage of $746 for those with a diploma. This means that a high school diploma or equivalency certificate can be worth an additional $8,000 each year, or well more than $350,000 over a person’s working lifetime.

The program is easy to apply for, and the college is offering free, online orientations this January that will cover the HSE preparation class curriculum and initial assessment exams, assist students with registering, and answer any questions about tuition-free college level classes. Plus, interested applicants will be able to meet with an academic counselor who will provide guidance and support in order to qualify for tuition-free college credit courses 

The spring semester started January 19, 2021; however, the program is an open enrollment program and is accepting applicants through early April. Additional information about the orientations and the program can be found at For specific questions, please contact the High School Equivalency Coordinator Javier Corrales at (949) 336-2457 or

Published January 5, 2021