Office of School Counseling

Friday Sendoff - January 10, 2020

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MUST DO ITEMS - Please read this section carefully

**NEW** The Semester 1 Use of Time data will be due on January 31st. The link and instructions will be provided in the 1/17 send-off. Be sure to keep accurate accounting of your time with students. This offers insight into your program and supports you may need as we identify staffing priorities.

Upcoming Meetings

Elementary Counselors Meeting

Wednesday, Feb. 19th, 9am-12pm

323 Sollers Point Road

Dundalk, MD

This is a mandatory meeting for all elementary school counselors, which includes schools with more than one elementary counselor.

High School Chairs Meeting

Thursday, Feb. 27th, 8-11am

11640 Crossroads Circle

Middle River, MD

This is a mandatory meting for all high school department chairs.

Middle School Chairs Meeting

Thursday, Feb. 27th, 12-3pm

11640 Crossroads Circle

Middle River, MD

This is a mandatory meeting for all middle school department chairs.


**NEW** SELF-CARE: We need your creative ideas!

The Office of School Counseling is tasked with creating activities for the Mind Over Matters campaign for the month of March. The focus for that month will be self-care. We will need to have activities for both staff and students (and their families) that are easily implemented both at home and at school. If you have anything you've done/shared with your school community and are willing to share it with us, please email Jen. We appreciate anything you're willing to share with us!

**NEW** BCACD is excited to offer you an upcoming Professional Development opportunity! Identifying Students in Crisis will be presented by Dr. Singer and Dr. Rosenthal of the Center for Anxiety and Behavioural Change. This PD will take place on Tuesday, January 28th from 4:45pm-6:15pm at Ridgely MS (Timonium). Earn Lauryn’s Law CEUs! This PD is free for BCACD members and $20 for non-members. See the attached flyer for additional information and RSVP to Heather Stackus ( Please feel free to share this PD opportunity with your School Social Workers and PPWs.

**NEW** MSCA Hometown Hero

Maryland School Counselor Association wants to highlight the amazing work school counselors are doing in the state of Maryland. Be creative,use powerpont, Youtube, etc to highlight school counselors who have made a significant contribution to the school counseling profession through advocacy, leadership, collaboration and/or systemic change. Examples of Hometown Heroes are school counselors who are applying for RAMP, started a new and innovative program at their school or in their community, created an outreach or after school program for at risk students, attend board meetings to advocate for school counselors, presents at conferences, uses data to show how their comprehensive school counseling program helped to achieve SIP goals, etc. The information you share will be presented at the School Counselor of the Year Gala on Friday, February 7, 2020. The deadline to submit your nomination is January 17th. See attached flyer below.

**NEW** Free parent workshop series - Below is the SERC FREE Parent Workshop winter series flyer. Please distribute to families in your school community.

A Message from TABCO

Sheila Harte-Dmitriev is the SE Zone UniServ Director for TABCO/ESPBC. She is the staff liaison for the Curriculum, Instruction and Climate Action Team which is compromised of several sub-groups of our members, including School Counselors. She spoke with Middle and High School Counselors to encourage counselors to be more active so counselor voices are represented. She asked that we share the following:

Your Association not only negotiates the terms of the TABCO Master Agreement (MA) with BCPS, but it is also our responsibility to enforce those terms. If you have questions after reviewing your agreement, speak to your Building Rep or contact your UniServ Director.

Of course, the best way to effect change is through collective action. One of the Action Teams for TABCO members is Curriculum, Instruction and Climate Team. This team meets the first Thursday of the month at the TABCO office and is made up of several sub-groups, like Early Childhood Teachers, Special Area Teachers and more. There is a group of School Counselors led by BCACD member and counseling chair Venetia Banks, who have started to attend to speak about the responsibilities and challenges unique to your role.

Finally, we are currently negotiating the entire Master Agreement with the core team being supported by a new expanded bargaining team. We wanted to ensure all the varied voices from the bargaining unit were heard and could help craft language which applies to them for the new Master Agreement.

School Counselors need to be represented. Please consider getting involved in your Union! Don’t agonize, organize!

Secondary Counselors

**NEW** Build Your Path Presents: Building Connections HR Panel- 2/27/20 at 3:30 - 6:00

Built environment industry employers are looking for talent at all levels. As an industry that is based on relationships, we are bringing these two very important groups (educators and employers) together to better understand each other, build relationships, and create talent pipelines. Please join us for a lively panel discussion from Human Resource Managers as they outline their efforts to hire the right people and what skills they look for in candidates.

US Naval Academy Summer Programs Applications for all summer programs are open.

SUMMER STEM For Students Entering 9th – 11th Grade (Current 8th graders ARE eligible!)

Considering a future in tech? Summer STEM at the Naval Academy is a vibrant week of problem-solving, exploratory learning, critical thinking, and team building for rising 9th - 11th graders interested in a future in Science, Engineering, Technology and Math.

SUMMER SEMINAR: For Students Entering the 12th Grade

Summer Seminar gives you a taste of life at the Academy and kick-starts your application journey for an appointment to the Academy. For one week in June, you will experience first-class academic, athletic and professional training while building lifelong friendships with campers from all over the country.

Secondary Department Chairs

World Language Grade 9 Placement

Please review the guidelines attached below from the Office of World Languages for use as you place students in grade 9 classes.

Reminder: Course Registration Guide Order

Please complete the survey below so we know how many Course Registration Guides to order for your office:

ESSA At a Glance

**NEW** Well Rounded Curriculum Scores

For students completing high school with a regular diploma, the student must have done one of the following during high school:

  • scored a 3 or better on any AP exam
  • scored a 4 or better on any IB exam
  • scored a 530 or better on the Math and 480 or better on the EBRW SAT exams
  • score a 21 or better on the ACT exam
  • earned a Dual Enrollment credit**

High School Counselors

**NEW** Marine Corps Educator Workshop January 20-24, 2020

Marine Corps Recruiting Station invites educators to their annual workshop in Parris Island, South Carolina. This trip is part of the Marine Corps' continuing effort to acquaint interested educational leaders with teh role of the Marine Corps and to demonstrate the wide variety of occupational and educational training the Marine Corps offers to young men and women. During the workshop, you'll have to opportunity to earn up to 11.5 continuing education credits. This is a free workshop. Reservations are first come first serve. Contact Sgt. Torres at or 410.850.9194 for more information. (flyer attached below)

**NEW** Course History Process: Transcript Articulation

When students enroll in Baltimore County Public Schools, whether from private school, another state or county we transpose their record using a COURSE HISTORY FORM with the assistance of the MASTER COURSE FILE. It's crucial that all high school counselors adhere to the long standing practice of using the prior school's grading scale, not the BCPS grading scale. This information is typically located on the transfer transcript or school profile. Additionally all courses, including failed courses must be added to the BCPS transcript.

Counselors should do their due diligence to contact the sending school to research information about courses if there are questions. If there are questions about graduation requirements, please don't hesitate to contact your Specialist or individual content area offices. This contact should be documented directly on the transcript so there's a record of any contact made to resolve questions.

When entering information on the Course History Form, the course titles used should be the comparable BCPS course title, not the title from the sending school.

Home school students who present a transcript with grades and "credits" from their home school do not earn credits and should go through the credit by exam process for any courses they'd like to earn credits in.

When records secretaries add credit be exam courses to a home school student record, they should add the statement "credit by exam" in the teacher column.

Quarter grades are not transferable to another school year for use with current year quarters for credit to be awarded.

Counselors and records secretaries should not delete or edit BCPS courses from a student record for any reason that would give a student an unfair advantage. Please refer to BCPS Rule 4100 Sec V and ASCA Ethical Standards.

Course histories should be entered in SIS by the records secretary with all supporting documents attached to the course history form so they can be added to the educational record.

There are far reaching implications for the failure to accurately document student records, costing students college admissions, scholarships and NCAA eligibility.

Below is an example of a grading scale from Archbishop Curley High School:

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Princeton Summer Journalism Program (Friday, July 31 – Monday, August 10, 2020) is a free residential journalism and college preparatory program for high-achieving current juniors from low-income backgrounds who are interested in journalism. Over 10 days, students live on campus at Princeton University and learn reporting skills from professional journalists. They also attend lectures on liberal arts topics led by Princeton U professors. Participants hold a press conference, produce a short documentary, report on a professional sporting event from the press box, attend a play or theatrical production, visit 3-4 major news outlets, and interview subjects for their feature stories in the Princeton Summer Journal. After the program, students are paired with a volunteer college adviser, a professional journalist, to help them through their application process.All program expenses, including meals, housing, airfare or train tickets to and from campus, are covered by the program. The online application is available on their website and due no later than Monday, February 17, 2020. Please note that students must submit an unofficial transcript to be considered. You may read about eligibility and the full application process here.

Federal Student Aid
Last month, FSA shared information about thier intention to modernize operations through the Next Gen Federal Student Aid (Next Gen FSA) initiative, which includes a new website that consolidates some of the other sites such as,, and They are happy to announce that the site launch is scheduled for December 22!

Please visit the new site at For more information, please view the full announcement on the current website.

High School Department Chairs

**NEW** Online Transcript, Diploma and Graduation Verification Process

BCPS has implemented an exclusively online process for former students to request graduation verifications, duplicate diplomas, and transcripts. Additional information is available on the Official Transcripts, Duplicate Diplomas and Graduation Verifications page. This process is exclusively online, there are no longer walk-in services. High School staff may continue to serve graduates throughout their first year after graduation with transcript requests.

College and Career Readiness (CCR) Letters

Our office is working with content areas to revise the CCR Letter that was previously shared with families. We'll send the letter to you as soon as it's available so you're able to meet with students, adjust schedules and send the letter to parents and guardians.

College Counselors

PCACAC Conference

PCACAC and its sponsors will provide up to TEN scholarships for counselors to attend the 55th Annual Conference in Harrisonburg, VA from April 19-21, 2020. The Marion Flagg Scholarship Program gives you the perfect opportunity to provide support to colleagues and friends in the field of college counseling and admissions. Self nominations are welcome.
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2020-2021 Guaranteed Access Grant and the Maryland Community College Promise Scholarship Program

The application cycle is now open.

The Maryland Higher Education Commission (MHEC) started importing the 2020-2021 Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) and Maryland State Financial Aid (MSFAA) applications.

Therefore, students who meet the income requirements in either the Guaranteed Access (GA) Grant or the Maryland Community College Promise Scholarship (Promise), will begin to receive notifications that they may be eligible for the program contingent upon submission of all required documentation. It is important to note that there is no separate application for either the GA or Promise program. Students are identified as potentially eligible for the program based on their income as reported on the FAFSA or MSFAA.

To assist you in navigating students through the 2020-2021 GA and Promise process, below you will find the following:

1. 2020-2021 OSFA Newsletter

2. GA Grant One-Pager to advertise the grant program at your school

3. Promise Scholarship One-Pager to advertise the scholarship program at your school

Important Things to Remember:

  • NEW Effective for the 2020-2021 academic year the “High School Certification Form” is NO longer required for consideration of the Guaranteed Access Grant Award program. Therefore, high school counselors are not required to complete this form, as done in the past for applicants identified as potentially eligible for the GA program.

  • NEW Effective immediately all required documentation for both the GA and Promise programs must be submitted by mail only at the address noted below. Electronic submissions of documentation are NO longer accepted due to the sensitivity of the information that is being transmitted.

Maryland Higher Education Commission

Office of Student Financial Assistance

Ground Floor Suite

6 N. Liberty Street

Baltimore, MD 21201

  • For the 2020-2021 academic year, MHEC has elected to only select 60% of its GA initial applicants for the income verification process. However, all GA initial applicants regardless of being selected for the income verification process must a High School Transcript by April 1.

  • The deadline to file the FAFSA or MSFAA for consideration of the GA Grant or Promise Scholarship is March 1, 2020.

  • High School transcripts with approved signatures: Transcripts must include up to the first semester grades of a student’s senior year, including courses still in progress. If your school does not have a HS transcript that includes all 1st semester grades of the student’s senior year, please provide the most current HS transcript AND the student’s grade/progress report at the end of the 1st semester of their senior year. We will not be able to review the student’s information until this documentation has been provided.

  • Encourage your students to check their emails, To-Do lists, and Application Status frequently. MHEC will send notifications to students regarding initial award acceptance and additional verification documents that may be requested.

  • The deadline to submit all required documentation to MHEC for GA students selected for verification is April 1, 2020. This is a hard deadline.

  • The deadline to submit all required documentation for the Promise Scholarship is June 15, 2020. This is a hard deadline.

If you have any questions regarding the information shared feel free to contact the Office of Student Financial Assistance at 410-767-3300

MHEC Financial Assistance Programs

State Financial Assistance Programs and Applications

Tuition Waiver for Unaccompanied Homeless Youth

Tuition Waiver for Foster Care Recipients

NACAC Request for Admission Application Fee Waiver

Students who have limited financial resources may use the NACAC Request for Application Fee Waiver Form when applying for college. The form — aimed at students planning to enroll in post-secondary education immediately following high school graduation — helps ensure that access to college is possible for all.

College Fly-Ins

Recently Added/Updated Scholarships in Naviance

Kurt M. Chenowith Scholarship

LifeBridge Health/ExpressCare Community Scholarship

Maryland Farm Bureau Scholarship

DCNNOA Scholarship

Cynthia E. Morgan Memorial Scholarship

DREAM.Us National Scholarship (FOR DREAM/DACA STUDENTS!!!)

ACS Scholars Program

Dwight P. Jacobus Scholarship

Love Your Career Scholarship

Young Filmmakers Contest

School Notification System Scholarship


Pawstruck Scholarship

SimpleTexting Scholarship

Mayfirm Scholarship

Academic University Scholarship

Marvel Optics Scholarship

Providian Medical Scholarship

Blaze Your Own Trail Scholarship

National Sojourners Essay Contest


Center for Alcohol Policy Essay Contest

C-SPAN’s StudentCam Documentary Competition

Technology Addiction Awareness Scholarship

Digital Privacy Scholarship
Ag Day Essay Contest
Montana Advocates Law Scholarship
I Have A Dream Scholarship

New Year’s Resolution Scholarship

Hispanic Scholarship Foundation

Relevant Bulletin Items

January 3, 2020 Bulletin: BCPS News Hub

BCPS News Hub is the new format for all superintendent bulletins. Staff will receive an e-mail each week with the link to the BCPS News Hub, which is a dynamic news feed powered by Microsoft SharePoint. Moving forward, staff will be able to visit the BCPS News Hub during the week for news that will be posted as soon as it is approved, thus making the BCPS News Hub a daily stop for information about BCPS.

Maryland Certification

Placement of Interns and Access to BCPSone

How to apply for a department chair interview

Leadership Development



Staff in the Department of Organizational Development, the Division of Curriculum and

Instruction Secondary Curriculum Offices, and the Division of Human Resources is offering a

spring orientation and training to acting and interested prospective department chairs. Acting department chairs who have not already completed these required sessions must

register for this professional learning opportunity.

Sessions will be held at the George Washington Carver Center for Arts and Technology on

Thursday evenings from 4:30 – 6:30 p.m. on the dates below:

• January 30, 2020

• February 13, 2020

• March 5, 2020

• March 26, 2020

• April 2, 2020

Interested participants must register by Monday, January 20, 2020, for the workshop by logging into BCPS One

Professional Development

**NEW** Best Approaches in Trauma Treatment 6 CEU's on 1/30/20 in Dundalk

**NEW** Ethical Obligations in Providing Trauma Based Services to African-Americans and Other Minority Groups 3 CEU's on 2/18/20 in Pikesville

**NEW** Ethics: Choosing Humility in Work with Diverse Populations 3 CEU's on 2/18/20 in Pikesville

**NEW** Lost in Translation: Mental Health Perspectives on Immigration and Acculturation (Live Webinar) 2 CEU's on 2/23/20

**NEW** A Closer Look at the Narrative Therapy (Live Webinar) 2 CEU's on 2/27/20

**NEW** Remember the Children: Effective Treatment for Children & Adolescents Diagnosed with PTSD, (Live Webinar) 2 CEU's on 3/11/20

**NEW**Through Grief and Through Growth: Promoting Support and Healing for Children and Adolescents in the Face of Loss (Live Webinar) 2 CEU's on 3/26/20

**NEW** Time to Thrive Conference - February 14-16, 2020

The Human Rights Campaign Foundation in partnership with the National Education Association and the American Counseling Association present Time To THRIVE, the annual national conference to promote safety, inclusion and well-being for LGBTQ youth...everywhere! To register visit Time to Thrive.

The HRC Foundation and a few generous sponsors have agreed to fund a limited number of Registration Scholarships for educators, youth-serving professionals and college students with financial need who otherwise would not be able to attend Time to THRIVE. Fill out the Registration Scholarship application by clicking here.

If you plan to attend any professional developments during the school day (outside of our mandatory meetings), you must get permission from your principal to be out of the building for that time.

Resource Roundup

Lending Library Items of the Week:

Office of School Counseling Lending Library

Inspiration and Good News

Relaxing sounds and scenes for your office

Michele Coleman uses an old laptop, a screen, and a 2 hour youtube video (running on a loop) to create a calming environment in her office at Halstead Academy. Her students love to watch the fish and enjoy the calming music. All this without the work of cleaning a tank every week! There are many videos like this out there but the link to this one in particular is:
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Schoology Access Codes

Elementary Counseling Curriculum: M4HSN-FCFN4

Secondary Counseling Curriculum: CFBV7-B6PCM

Threat Management: Q6RHK-WHHVC

College and Career Counseling: PFZD6-65N4V

Curriculum Updates: T7BM2-R8JSC

GSA Sponsors (LGBTQ+ resources): ZMBZ-4QXP-DKC89

Contact Information

Naviance Support: 1-866-337-0080 option 2 &

Signup Genius Support:

CPS email address:

MHEC FAFSA Completion (MD CAPS):

BCPS School Counseling Pinterest

Check out our Pinterest page for ideas that will enhance your counseling program

Counselor T-Shirt Designs

Want to make a custom shirt for you or your department? Check out these svg desgins. There's a kiosk outside of Burlington in Security Mall that can make one for you.

Crisis Text Line

Free confidential crisis intervention via SMS message. The organization's services are available 24 hours a day, every day, throughout the US

Cigna Employee Assistance Program (EAP)

Through EAP, you get access to licensed clinicians to help you with emotional, behavioral, and other issues you may be experiencing such as help with finding pet care, elder care and caregiver support.