Frequently Asked Questions

HHS School Counselors- updated Jan. 2017

What is a GPA?

Your Grade Point Average is the average of ALL your semester grades during high school; it is recalculated each time a semester ends and you get new final grades. Your GPA reflects your academic performance and determines where you rank in your class.

*The student with the highest GPA is #1 in that class; all others follow.

*Both GPA and rank are important factors in college admissions and many scholarship decisions.

How are classes weighted, and what exactly does that mean?

Because of the added academic challenge that they present, both Advanced Placement and junior/senior level Honors courses are "weighted", meaning they carry more value than a regular class in calculating a student's GPA.

How do I earn credits?

Each semester class you pass earns you .5 credit. You need a certain number of credits in specific courses to graduate from high school. See the academic planning guide for additional information.


Starting with the HHS class of 2020- all students will need 1 semester (.5 credits) of Civics in order to graduate. The IL and US Constitution tests will be taken during this class.


Graduation requirements:

4 credits English

3 credits Math

2 credits Science

1 credit World History

1 credit US History

.5 credit Consumer Education

1 credit Fine Arts/Vocational/Foreign Language

.5 credit Civics (Pass the IL and US constitution tests)


Total credits earned needs to be 25 or higher


See the academic planning guide for additional information.

Do I have to take a foreign language to graduate from high school?

HHS graduation requirements do not include a foreign language at this time, and languages are considered electives. However, many colleges and universities do require 2 years of the same language as an admission requirement. Check with the college or university of your choice for their language requirements.

How do I get help if I want to know more about career planning?

Talk with your school counselor and take online career and interest inventories. Check out actprofile.org- set up your profile, link with your HHS School Counselor, take a couple interest inventories. Arrange to shadow people whose jobs you find interesting.

Why should I study?

The more you know, the more you can do. Good study habits can help you succeed in school and in the future. Many skills that make you a success in school can also help you succeed on the job and in many areas of life. Studying is not the same as homework. Studying is re-reading, re-thinking, and reorganizing, all in order to learn the material.

What should I do at the first sign of trouble with classes, schoolwork, homework or tests?

  • Make an appointment to talk with your teacher.
  • Ask your teacher for clarification.
  • Be in class, on time, every day.
  • Cut back on work hours if you have an out-of-school job.
  • Get the name and number of someone in your class.
  • Turn in EVERY homework assignment!
  • Ask your counselor for suggestions on study skills.
  • Find out what resources are available at school and in your community, such as tutoring and homework help.
  • Teach your lesson to someone else.

Building your Resume starts now!

Freshman year is a fresh start and a great time to participate in a variety of activities: clubs, sports, and the arts. We encourage you to keep a file or list of achievements, activities, leadership, community service, skills and work experiences now. This will prove to be helpful as you become a senior applying to college and for scholarships.

Do I need a physical for high school?

Yes! Every incoming freshman needs a new grade 9 physical. This must be on the DHS State of Illinois form (same as Kindergarten and 6th grade). The exam date must be within 1 year of the start of Freshman year at HHS.

Student athletes may want to wait until June 1 so they are eligible for all sports for freshman year. The DHS freshman physical form is required for all grade 9 athletes. Athletes need additional physicals for sophomore, junior and senior years.

Physical forms should be turned in to the HHS office before any sport practice begins or the first day of school. The office is open throughout June and August.

What immunizations are required to attend HHS?

All students must have:


  • Tdap
  • a second dose of Chicken Pox (Varicella)

Highland HS Counselors

Last names A-He: Mrs. Amber Spaeth

Last names Hi-O: Mrs. Mary Jackson

Last names P-Z: Mrs. Carrie Lieberman