Solon High School

Monthly Update-December 2021

My Favorite Month of the Year

Good Morning High School Families,

As we get ready to finish this first semester I am reminded how important it is to be thankful. The busyness of the season, nightly activities and anything else in between can take up so much of our focus, we can forget to be thankful for what we have. This happens to me often this time of year, but as I reflect on the last 22 months there is much to be thankful for! We are so blessed to have the students, parents, and educators we have in Solon! Having worked in other districts before moving here, I can say first-hand that we have many positive people who care in the right ways. Thanks for putting your child's education first and thank you for all of the support. Enjoy the the next three weeks, and as always reach out anytime. Enjoy your December, Zach

Dates to ADD to your calendar

We all know how calendars can get filled, so please add the following dates to your calendar if you have not yet. These are all in the month of December, 2021

Early Outs: 12.2, 12.9, 12.16, and 12.22 (last day of 1st semester)

Winter Band Concert: Friday, December 17th at 7:00 PM

Vocal Winter Concert: Sunday, December 19th at 6:30 PM

SAVE the DATE- ICAP conferences

In January all of our 9th-11th graders will be taking part in our ICAP conferences. These will be taking place on Thursday, January 20th from 2:00-7:30 and Thursday, January 27th from 2:00-7:30. More information will be coming, but here is a brief synopsis regarding what takes place during these meetings.

During these conferences, students will discuss the experiences and reflections toward developing a career plan for their future success. The goal is that these conferences will also invite further discussion at home and will help with registering for courses that will align with their goals. There will be information and handouts sent home from these conferences with course registration guidelines that will occur in February. Discussion points for families to focus on while choosing classes in a meaningful way will be provided.

Solon Optimist Essay Contest

Solon Optimists Essay Contest

Enter your 700-800 word essay on "How does an optimistic mindset change my tomorrow?" and you could win a $2,500 scholarship! Entries are due to Ms. Nielsen or Mrs. Stahle by January 28th, 2022. Instructions, rules, and applications are outside Ms. Nielsen's room or at . Anyone under 19 can enter. If you have any questions, contact Good luck!

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2021/2022 Yearbook

Please help us create the best yearbook possible! Any of you can upload photos at any time all year long. Right now we are specifically looking for Girls and Boys Basketball, Girls and Boys Wrestling, Choir, Club and Fall Musical candids.

Here is the 21-22 Yearbook link:

You all are welcome to start uploading pictures into your book at any time. We encourage adding a tag to the photo uploads before uploading, so that pictures get categorized correctly in your yearbook. (Examples: Musical, 2nd block Algebra, lunch outside)

BIG Board Reminder

Click HERE for assignments/assessments for each teacher, each week.
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Hey Seniors!

We need middle names for graduation purposes. Please email with this information. Thanks!

Just in Case we need the 2 hour delay schedule :)

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From the Counseling Office

Mike Thompson, Solon HS Counselor

Kathleen McKean, College and Career Transition Coordinator


At Solon HS, we have three weeks until Winter Break. Besides the focus on academics, our Winter Sports season is now in full swing. And we are fully into the holiday season. On top of this, each of us, students, staff, parents, etc., are in the midst of a pandemic. This time of year can be stressful for students as they try to balance and prioritize each of these things.

For many students, when they experience either stressful situations or anxiety, their thoughts become muddled. They might be less clear in their thinking. My primary role is to assist students with their social/emotional development. And within that role, my number one job is to listen and help students manage stressful and anxious situations (i.e. see things more clearly). Parents, if you sense your student is a bit more stressed, I want you to know that I can help. You can reach me either by phone (624-3401 ext. 1117) or email (


Summer 2022 Internship Opportunity!!! (Current Juniors and Sophomores)

The PORTAL for Summer 2022 internships will open December 13!!! The due date is Friday, February 11, 2022.You have an opportunity to complete a 60 hour work-site internship and earn three elective credits for your experience!! For more information visit the Career Planning page of the School Counseling website.

Future Planning: Spring 2022 Job Shadow Opportunity - The application portal for Spring 2022 will open on January 3, 2022 and close on Friday, January 28, 2022 @ 3:00 p.m. Job shadow opportunities are available for sophomores, juniors and seniors. To view individual and group job shadow opportunities and application information go to



  • The Gazette’s Celebrating Apprenticeships Section (for all parents)

The Cedar Rapids Gazette recently published its Celebrating Apprenticeships (digital) section and is available to both students and their families. This section includes information about local apprenticeships in the building trades (training to become a plumber, electrician, ironworker, etc.), profiles of several apprentices, and information on starting wages and local apprenticeship coordinator contacts.

  • Planning for your Future: ICAN Resources

    • Below you will find links to grade level checklists

In addition to these great tips, visit the ICAN YouTube Channel and check out our video Tip of the Week. Each week ICAN releases a video tip for students preparing for life after high school. To receive the video tip each week, subscribe to the ICAN E-Alerts

Schedule of ICAN events: Wednesday webinars are scheduled through May 2022 and you can view the full schedule at

  • Student Planning Pointers for Parents ( for all parents)

Iowa Student Loan is offering a free service to parents of students in grades eight through twelve. Receive two emails per month designed to:

  • Provide you with timely content, plus tips and tools relevant to your student’s grade level.

  • Involve you in your high school student’s four-year academic plan.

  • Help you and your students plan for education and training beyond high school.

Parents who participate are entered into quarterly drawings for college savings plans and deposits.

Financial Aid: FAFSA

  • FAFSA Step-by-Step: Sponsored by Iowa College Access Network

Parents of seniors, on Wednesday, December 1st at 5:30 pm, ICAN is doing a Facebook Live event where they'll be going over the FAFSA step-by-step, page by page. Any students/families wanting to get their FAFSA completed, this is a good opportunity to get it done with ICAN's guidance. This session will be interactive. People will be able to ask questions as they go along. Special guests include financial aid representatives from both ISU and U of I. Tune in on the ICAN Facebook page or REGISTER

  • The Financial Aid Page on my School Counseling website has information about completing the FAFSA. The page also contains FAFSA Priority Deadlines for colleges/universities in Iowa. FYI ... the FAFSA priority deadline for both ISU & UI is December 1. If you need it, you can get help completing the FAFSA and you can get assistance through ICAN.

Financial Aid: Scholarships

  • Scholarship Opportunities for Seniors: The Scholarship Page on my School Counseling website contains information about how to search for scholarships and a list of scholarships with monthly deadlines (e.g. Scholarships with December Deadlines). This is not scholarship information related to the Solon Chapter of Dollars for Scholars. (That information will come to you in January/February 2022.)

  • Scholarship Opportunities for Juniors: Go to my Scholarship Page. Scroll down a bit and you will find a box titled, 2021 - 2022 Scholarship Opportunities for Juniors. In that box is a scholarship called the Hills Bank Leadership Grant. That scholarship opens November 20 and closes on March 1, 2022.


Spring 2022 College Credit Opportunities (Current Juniors and Seniors)Parents of seniors and juniors, there is still time for your student to see Kathleen about taking college credit course(s) for the spring 2022 semester. The deadline to register for a spring 2022 college credit course is Friday, December 10, 2021. More information about college credit courses can be found by using these links:

Kirkwood Community College

The University of Iowa

2022 - 2023 Kirkwood CC College Credit Opportunities

The Kirkwood Regional Center @ The University of Iowa (KRCUI) is hosting informational Zoom sessions to provide information to students and parents on college credit opportunities for the 2022 - 2023 academic year. Below are the dates for the presentations. Presentations will start at 6:00 PM. The Zoom link for all presentations:

December 7 January 18 February 3

December 14 January 25


Parents of Sophomores

I have shared information with our sophomores about the 2022 Iowa H.O.B.Y. Leadership Seminar. You can find more information about this opportunity for your sophomore here.


Mr. Thompson is continuing to update his website. You can access the High School Website here.

Activities Schedules

For all things activity related, please use this link to find schedules, locations, dates and times. Any questions can be directed to Casey Hack, district Activities Director.