Bulldog Counseling News

September 2021

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Welcome to our Bowie Community - we're glad you're here!

This newsletter's purpose is to share events and information from the Counseling Department. Please contact your counselor should you need further or specific information. Here is a link to our Bowie Counselors.

Welcome back, Bulldogs!

Welcome to a new school year. We know it’s been an adjustment to be back in school where we can finally “meet at the tree.” Even though we’re excited to be back together again in classrooms and learning with teachers, it’s been a challenge to our routines and even our stamina. Please remember to practice good self care, more on that below, and know that we are here to support you as you adjust. We are so glad you’re back, Bulldogs!

Meet Your Counselor

There have been some changes to our counselor-student assignments this year. We have two new counselors this year: Ms. April Giuffre and Mr. Hunter Ruffin. Adding a new position to our team this year created an alphabet shift. Please check out the counselor list to find your counselor. You can click on the name to learn more about your counselor as well as finding their contact information.


As a reminder, school counselors work with students in the academic, career development and social/emotional domains. Please let us know how we can help make it a great school year!

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Senior Meetings

The counselors recently wrapped up senior conferences the week of August 23-27th. Each fall, counselors meet with Seniors during English classes for Senior Conferences. We present information about graduation requirements as well as options for after graduation. After our presentation, we invited all 703 seniors to meet with us individually to review their credits, graduation plans and next steps! Anyone who missed the first meeting should reach out to their alpha counselor to schedule a make-up conference.

In addition to senior conferences, all seniors were added to the Class of 2022 Blend Page. Please encourage your student to explore the college and career resources housed here, such as the college match tool, career interest inventories, and college application help.

If you have questions about your student’s graduation plan, please reach out to the counselor. If you have college and career questions, please reach out to our College and Career Advisor, Ms. Valverde: carli.valverde@austinisd.org.

Tips for Success



As the year kicks off, we want to be sure students are finding all the support they need. This Tip Sheet contains ideas about study skills, extra support at school, and tips and tricks for success at Bowie. Starting off strong will help ensure a great year!

Level Changes Start 9/20 and Deadline is 9/28

Level change requests (from Advanced/ AP to academic) cannot be made until the sixth week of school. At that time, students will need to fill out a Google request form that will be sent to a committee consisting of teachers and other campus leaders. The committee will consider the student’s demonstrated commitment to their academic success, including the completion of the course assignments, participation in tutoring and/or FIT with the teacher or a private tutor, and/or utilization of time- or stress-management strategies as guided by the counselor, etc. A failing grade is not necessarily sufficient cause to approve the level-change request. Students that have a six-weeks progress report average of an 80% or better are not eligible for a level change. The student’s academic history, preparedness for the course, intended career pathway, and other relevant factors will be considered.


If the level change is approved, the student’s grade will transfer to the new course. To ensure classes are balanced, students who are approved for a level change will likely experience other changes to their schedule, including changes to their class order, teacher assignments for one or more classes, changes to their lunch schedule, etc.


Level change forms will become available starting on Monday, September 20, 2021. All forms must be submitted by 4:00PM on Tuesday, September 28, 2021. By Friday, October 1, 2021, students’ advanced course teachers will let them know if their request was approved or denied.

BLEND Counseling Department Page

The Bowie High School Counseling Department BLEND page is available! All students and parents have been enrolled. On our BLEND page you will find counselor contact information, upcoming events, and numerous resources. Please make sure that your announcement notifications are turned on for this course so that you keep up-to-date on all of the great things we have planned for our students and the Bowie community.


Also, be sure to check out our link at the jbhs.org website!

Mental Health Reminders

We are hopeful that the start of in person schooling is re-energizing for our students, but we also recognize that this year is going to be a big transition for many students. It will likely require adjustments and growing pains similar to the transition of last school year. As students have adjusted to their routines, they may be feeling more academic and social pressure this school year. If your student is feeling a little overwhelmed, we like to use a little acronym to check in: MEDS-- mindfulness, exercise, diet, and sleep. Are you fully present in your classes and conversations? Are you being active enough and eating the right foods to fuel your body? Are you getting enough sleep at night? Taking care of your physical self is a great way to combat mental stress! Oftentimes, our physical care is the first to go as we try to manage social and emotional pressure. Please know that the Bowie Counseling Office has an open door policy for students, and they are welcome to stop by and check in if they need a listening ear.


We would like to remind families that Austin ISD has partnered with Gramercy Speciality Clinic to provide access to individual therapy services on campus. If you are interested in signing your student up for mental health services, please fill out the electronic student referral form.

Comfort Dogs

Abner and Martha are back! These amazingly sweet and beautiful dogs are part of the Lutheran Church Charities K9 Comfort Dog program where they received thousands of hours of training prior to coming to Austin. One, or both, of these comfort dogs will be visiting during lunches twice a month this semester. Watching students' huge grins is a highlight of our day!

Upcoming Events

Twilight Credit Recovery Coming Soon

Our Twilight program has some big changes coming this school year! Read below for more information.


What is it? Twilight is a method of credit recovery for most core classes and Spanish

Dates: September 20th through November 19th (open enrollment based on space)

Times: 7:45 - 8:45 am and/or 4:45 - 5:45 pm

Where: In person at Bowie

Format: Students will work on Blend Modules to recover grades and once complete can exit Twilight

Teachers: Teachers will monitor students progress and provide support

Grades: Students can earn a 70%


Failed 1st 9 Weeks?: Students will be able to enroll in Twilight to recover first 9 weeks after October 1st


Registration coming soon!

College and Career Corner

The College and Career Center is hopping these days as seniors are in the midst of college application season. All students can learn more about the College and Career Center by visiting this link.