Bulldog Bulletin

Smyrna High School's Counseling Newsletter

3rd Quarter, February 2017

SHS Counseling Staff

Mrs. Walker: students A-D, walkerle@rcschools.net

Mrs. McKinley: students E-K, mckinleya@rcschools.net

Mrs. Dickerson: students L-Ri, dickersonk@rcschools.net

Mr. Lay: students Ro-Z, lays@rcschools.net

Mrs. Hockenberry: counseling secretary, hockenberryk@rcschools.net

Mrs. Benton: counseling secretary, bentont@rcschools.net

Stay Informed and follow us:

Instagram: @SHS_Counselors

Twitter: @shscounselors88

Remind: Text the message @scholar123 to the number 81010

A Note from Principal Powell

We are past the half way point of the school year with many things taking place this semester. Our end of course assessments will be given the last couple of weeks in April. These assessments will count towards the final grade for these classes as well as a portion of their 4th quarter final grades. Please remind your child to do the very best on these assessments.

Our schoolwide ACT test for the Juniors will be given on March 21. We as a school are reviewing daily during our classes and our OVERTIME period with sample questions and test taking strategies to help all students do well on the ACT test. We also have built in some more incentives for students exceeding their predicted score. This will also add points to their classes during the 4th quarter. This test is required for college admission and higher scores mean more money for you and your children when they attend college.

We are also in the process of registering students for their classes for next year. Please keep in mind that the more difficult their classes are will also help them to prepare for the ACT test as well as college readiness. For most colleges, the ACT score is more important than the G.P.A.

Please do not hesitate to contact your teachers or counselor if you have questions.

Upcoming Events

Class selection/Registration

Class registration and course selection for the 2017-2018 school year will begin in February. We will host meetings in the library with the students' English classes.

Course selection is a multi-step process and parent input/participation is very important. Our goal is to maximize student and parent input during the selection process in order to minimize requests for changes at the start of next school year. Counselors will meet with students 1:1 to discuss graduation requirements and teacher recommendations for courses. Students will enter their selections in INOW while we are in the library.

Students will bring home their course selection sheets to be reviewed by parents and guardians. Changes can be made on the course selection sheet and on the computer by the students. The course selections sheet with a parent/guardian signature will need to be returned to the student's English teacher within 72 hours of receiving them. After 72 hours, INOW will be locked and students will not be able to make changes.

Counselors will verify all course selections in INOW. Student/parent requested schedule changes at the start of next school year will be kept to a minimum based on this process of course selection. We build a master schedule based on the choices your student makes on the course selection sheet. We want students to put serious thought in their course selections.

Please look for your students to bring home their course selection sheets the following weeks:

Current Juniors: February 6-10

Current Sophomores: February 13-17

Current Freshmen: February 21-24

Schoolwide ACT test for 11th grade students

11th grade students will have the opportunity to take the ACT for free on March 21st, 2017 during the school day at Smyrna High School . Students will be registering with school staff and will not need to register on their own.

Students will be coding their answer sheets on March 9th and will need to bring a sharpened pencil with them to their coding sessions.

On test day, March 21st:

  • students should bring sharpened pencils and their calculator
  • no food or drink will be allowed in the rooms (water and snack will be provided during the break)
  • students should dress in layers
  • students should get a good night's sleep on March 20
  • students should be on time

Students are required to take the ACT or SAT in order to graduate; this is an important opportunity for them to test for free during the school day and meet this graduation requirement.

Tennessee Promise Mandatory Meeting March 9th, 2017 5:30pm

Tennessee Promise offers up to five semesters of tuition-free community or technical college to Tennessee high school graduates. The program provides eligible students a last –dollar scholarship which covers full tuition and mandatory fees not covered by Pell grant, TELS, and TSAA. Students will also be assigned a partnering organization and mentor who will provide guidance and assistance as the students enter higher education. Student must participate with their partnering organization to access TN Promise Dollars.

Mandatory Meeting: March 9th, 2017 5:30 pm SHS Cafeteria

Website with more information: http://tnpromise.gov

NACAC College Fair

Sunday, April 30th, 1-3pm

201 5th Avenue South

Nashville, TN

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Stay Informed

Tennessee Scholars Adds Value to a Diploma

What is Tennessee Scholars?

Tennessee Scholars is a rewards and incentives program for students who graduate high school with the required courses and additional expectations of attendance, discipline, and volunteer service.

What are the benefits for graduating as a Tennessee Scholar?

The benefits are scholarships to many universities, preferential job hiring, recognition at graduation, and obtaining the distinction of being a scholar that will be on your permanent record. For a list of participating universities, please visit: http://www.tennesseescholars.org/student-information/

How do you become a Tennessee Scholar?

  1. Apply by completing the checklist for Tennessee Scholars located on the school counseling website. Once you and your parents sign it, return your completed form with documented volunteer hours to your school counselor.
  2. Students must complete the student checklist before the deadline during your senior year (February 17, 2017 for this year's senior class). Your counselor must approve your checklist to be eligible for the honor.
  3. Seniors must complete the online survey for graduating seniors that is available in January of each year. (Only high school seniors should complete this survey)

Please follow this link for more information: http://www.tennesseescholars.org/

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Schmoop and Vocabulary.com

Schmoop and Vocabulary.com are both online resources we are utilizing this year to work towards increasing ACT scores for our students. Higher ACT scores means a higher acceptance rate to college and access to more scholarship money for our students. All students have SHS have a schmoop account and a vocabulary.com account. Students can practice from home in addition to the work we do at school.

School Counseling Appointments

When students would like to visit with their school counselor, we ask that they use the "appointment request" link on our counseling website. This allows us to review the student's request and meet with them at a time that is not disruptive to their academics. Students in crisis are sent to us when needed without an appointment required.

We have also created an appointment request link for parents. We have an open door policy when it comes to meeting with parents; however, having a scheduled appointment allows us to be fully prepared for the meeting and also allows us to make sure we are not involved in other meetings or counseling groups when the parent arrives. Please review the appointment links: http://smyrnahscounseling.wixsite.com/shs2015/make-an-appointment


Make sure that you are checking INOW Home Portal and keeping up with your student’s grades. If you have any questions about the grades, you can email your student’s teachers. If you have not received your login information, please visit the counseling webpage and click the ''INOW" tab located on the far right of the heading bar. There, you will see a button to request log-on information.


Want to know about scholarships? Follow these easy steps below:

1. Visit http://www.shs.rcs.k12.tn.us/

2. Click on “counseling” at the top of the page

3. Click on grey tab in middle of page labeled “College Corner”

4. Scroll under the first picture to the grey button labeled “ scholarships”.

You will be able to travel to the website for that particular scholarship just by clicking on the link OR the application will be uploaded for you to print.


The Opportunities button on the college corner of the SHS counseling webpage is the one-stop for all things non-scholarship related. We divide page between college visits/fairs, community service opportunities, career/work opportunities, and "other". Other may include things like Governor's school, learning conferences, and general opportunities that our students can participate in. These opportunities are updated weekly.

Weekly Conferences

Parent/teacher conferences are offered every Wednesday at 3:45. Parents can request to meet your child's teachers. Conferences must be scheduled by the Tuesday morning prior to your planned Wednesday meeting.

Conferences are scheduled through Ms. Benton.

bentont@rcschools.net or

615-904-3865 ext. 23705

College Readiness Testing

Registering for the test:

If you are planning to take either the ACT or the SAT you must register online at www.actstudent.org (ACT) and www.collegeboard.com (SAT). You will need the following SHS High School Code to register: 432130

ACT test Dates

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