FMHS Info Swarm

January & February 2017

Scheduling Timeline

The start of each new semester brings with it lots of questions about student schedules. With all of this fresh on our memory, I thought this might be the perfect opportunity to review the scheduling timeline to ensure we are all on the same page when addressing questions and concerns from students and parents. Please use this information to help students understand when they can request changes to their schedule. As always there are exceptions that are made for extenuating circumstances that we feel are in the student's best interest.

IGPs (September-February)--The bulk of a school counselor's year is dedicated to individual graduation plan (IGP) meetings. Each year counselors meet with parents and students individually to review their 4 year plan of courses they wish to take before graduating. During this meeting counselors enter the first draft of a student's schedule into Power School.

  • This includes the students 8 primary requests (at least 4 academic core and 4 electives) as well as 3 or 4 alternate courses that the student agrees to take should they not be scheduled for all of their primary requests.
  • The courses students select as alternates are very real possibilities for their schedule and should be selected with careful consideration.

Course Request Verification (March)--Counselors print a copy of each student's course requests and send them home to be signed by the student and their parents.

  • Parent and student signatures serve as validation that the student is indeed requesting these primary and alternate courses.

Schedule Change Request Window (April-May)--Students may request schedule changes--both academic and elective--through the school counseling office until the end of the school year. This is really the last opportunity that students have to make an elective change.

  • Students may freely request to add or drop an elective, add or drop an AP course for which they have been recommended, and request level changes for core academic courses.

Schedule Creation and Revision (June-July)--Schedules are officially created in Power School. Counselors and administrators review student schedules and attempt to troubleshoot issues before these schedule are shared with students.

Schedules Go Live in Power School (End of July/First of August)--Student schedules are released in Parent Portal for student and families to view. This displays both the course and the instructor to which a student has been assigned.

Conflict Resolution (Early August)--Students with scheduling issues may make an appointment to address the concern with their counselor. Students may not make elective changes at this time.

  • Students may request changes to fill holes in their schedule, address sequencing issues (e.g. a level 3 before a level 4 course), and request academic level changes.
  • Counselors will not attempt to change the electives of students that were scheduled into alternates because they are courses which the students selected and signed off acknowledging the request.

2nd Semester Schedule Change Request Window (November)--Students may request academic level changes and resolve schedule issues necessary for promotion or graduation. Students may not make elective changes at this time.

This timeline allows students the majority of the school year (from their IGP through the end of the school) to request the schedule they desire. Once the school year begins, student schedules are effectively locked. This is done not as a punishment to students but to hold them accountable for the requests they make, since decisions about the number of sections offered and staffing are made using this data. Hopefully sharing this insight with students will help them choose to give a thoughtful consideration to the courses they request each spring.

Food for Thought

Read to Succeed

Please see below for a rundown of Read to Succeed meetings and assignments. Also, I'd like to say a big thank you to Ms. Garner and Ms. Medley with their leadership at the most recent PSG.


Week 4 CIT (Wednesday 1/25)

Week 4 Classroom Connection Journals (Friday 1/27)


Week 1 Professional Readings (1/30-2/3)

Week 2 PSG (Wednesday 2/8)

Week 3 Department Meeting Reflection (Wednesday 2/15)

Week 3 Google Responses Due (Friday 2/17)

Week 4 CIT (Wednesday 2/22)

Week 4 Classroom Connection Journals (Friday 2/24)

SLO Update

Only teachers of yearlong SLO courses and 2nd semester SLO courses still have work remaining. For these teachers, their respective SLO administrator will be following up regarding midpoint conferences soon. For the other 98% of the school, congratulations are in order as we have successfully survived another year of SLOs. I am honestly grateful for the hard work and extra effort you put forth in making SLOs work at FMHS. I know that the technology isn't always our friend and the format has been ever changing as of late, but again I am thankful for your positive attitude in taking care of this responsibility. The early read on 2017-2018 is that SLOs will continue in much the same manner next year as they did this year. Hopefully we won't change platforms or requirements next year and can start to establish some normalcy moving forward.

Reminder: Summer Professional Development Opportunities

There is still time to volunteer for these incredible professional development opportunities. Please email me if you would like to attend either of these events. If you are undecided I can provide a personal testimonial for both conferences.

SC Midlands Summit--The SC Midlands Summit is a two day conference focusing on the integration of technology into the school and classroom with a focus on using Google Apps for Education, learning environments, innovation, transformation, 21st century skills and mobile devices for student learning. Over 130 unique sessions will be offered!

June 7th-8th, 2017

Blythewood, SC

Click here for more details

High Schools That Work (HSTW) Staff Development Conference--The HSTW Staff Development Conference provides a platform for K-12 practitioners to share innovative and proven school improvement strategies. Hear how teams of teachers, counselors and leaders prepared academic and career and technical education students with the skills and knowledge needed to succeed in college and the 21st-century workplace.

July 12th-15th, 2017

Nashville, Tenessee

Click here for more details

Quote of the Month

Big image

Calendar of Events


  • January 3 FMHS Family Meeting--3:55 pm
  • January 3 Grades Due in Power School--3:40 pm
  • January 4 Homeroom--8:40 am
  • January 6 Report Card Distribution--2nd Block
  • January 11 PSG--Planning Periods
  • January 17 Leadership Team Meeting--3:55 pm
  • January 17 ACT Workshop--All Day for Participating Students
  • January 18 ACT Workshop--All Day for Participating Students
  • January 18 Department Meetings--3:55 pm
  • January 20 Students of the Month Recognition--10:20 am
  • January 23 R2S Leadership Team--7:45 am
  • January 23 School Improvement Council--4:30 pm
  • January 25 M4 Midterm Distribution--All Blocks
  • January 25 CIT Meetings--8:40 am-3:40 pm


  • February 1 FMHS Family Meeting--3:55 pm
  • February 6 R2S Leadership Team--7:45 am
  • February 8 PSG--Planning Periods
  • February 14 Leadership Team Meeting--3:55 pm
  • February 15 Sophomore RIng Meeting--2:00 pm
  • February 15 Department Meetings--3:55 pm
  • February 17 Students of the Month Recognition--10:20 am
  • February 22 End of the M4 Grading Period
  • February 22 CIT Meetings--8:40 am-3:40 pm
  • February 27 M4 Grades Due in Power School--8:40 am
  • February 27 School Improvement Council--4:30 pm
  • February 27 AP Day/Night--TBA (Day) & 6:30 pm (Night)
  • February 28 ACT Test Administration--1st & 2nd Blocks