Comet Connection

CHS School Counseling

Happy October!


It's hard to believe we are already a full month into the school year!


It is definitely starting to feel like Fall as the School Counseling team has been hard at work helping seniors prepare to complete their college applications. This issue of the Comet Connection has a lot of updates for seniors so be sure to check those out!


We know that virtual learning can be a little bit stressful so we have put together some awesome resources and opportunities for you. If you are having trouble focusing or feeling stressed out, we encourage you to check out the resources below.


As always, your counselors are here for you if you need us! Please don't hesitate to reach out with any questions or concerns.


The CHS School Counseling Team

Need to Speak with your School Counselor?

We might not be in the same building, but we are still here to help!! Counselors are working 8:00am – 3:00pm throughout this remote learning period, and have set “Office Hours” for scheduling meetings with students and parents. To request a meeting with a counselor, please fill out the respective Meeting Request Form.

Feeling Stressed?

We know that virtual learning is new for everyone and some students may be feeling the stress. As always, the School Counseling department, your teachers, and administrators are here to help! Check out some of the resources below if you're feeling stressed.

Stress Management Group

Ms. Shucavage, alongside the school counseling department, will be running a three-week group, which will be taking place to address stressors and ways to manage them. The group will help you better understand stress and provide you the space/resources to engage in activities that will help you better manage your stress. If this is something that interests you, please use the google form so we can gather a list of students and contact you with more information.

https://forms.gle/8cbHm7Rutwnw5oVp6

Make Up Days

We know that students have been feeling overwhelmed with their workload so be sure to take advantage of these Asynchronous Wednesday Make Up Days! No additional work will be assigned on these days so be sure to use this time to catch up if you are falling behind.
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My Student Needs Academic Help – Now What?

STEP 1

Contact Teachers – Encourage your student to talk with his or her teacher. Students who need help often shy away from asking for it, but teachers and counselors want to help students succeed. All of our teachers actively work to differentiate their lessons to meet the needs that they observe in class, but can do much more after hearing the input from students and guardians. In addition to helping to ensure that everyone is on the same page, this open communication helps teachers and families target their interventions on the specific areas in which students are experiencing difficulties.

Your student’s teachers are experts in their course content and expectations; therefore, teachers are the best place to start when a student is struggling. Students and parents should closely monitor their Schoology accounts for recent updates in assignments, grades, supplemental resources, and messages from teachers. Students and parents can also message individual teachers directly through their Schoology account.


STEP 2

Attend Coach Class: Every teacher has at least one day of Coach Class per week, while the majority of teachers office hours to help students on multiple days. Check with your teacher to confirm the Coach Class schedule and to let them know when you plan on attending.


STEP 3

See your Counselor: Counselors can help students with stress management, time management, and self-advocacy skills that help to make a positive impact on grades. In addition, school counselors can help identify any personal issues that may be affecting a student’s academic performance. Counselors can help students develop the strategies and skills to seek and follow through with their personal goals – academically, socially and emotionally. When necessary, counselors can help coordinate between students, their teachers, parents, and other support staff to develop plans to address specific areas that they may be experiencing difficulties.


Contact your Case Manager: Students who have IEPS or 504's should be encouraged to speak with their case managers about their concerns in class. The case managers are there to help advocate for the students on their case load. The case managers can speak to the teachers to help provide different strategies or accommodations that can help your students. They can also help the students get organized and teach students how to advocate for themselves. Students are still encouraged to speak to the teacher with specific concerns about assignments as they are the content expert.


STEP 4

Content Department Chair: For ongoing concerns related to a specific course that cannot easily be rectified at the classroom level, it may be helpful to reach out to the content Department Chair. Each content area has their own Chair, who is responsible for ensuring the quality delivery of their department’s curriculum across each teacher, course, and grade-level.


Reach out to the Assistant Principal: Should all other avenues be exhausted to improve the student’s academic performance, the student’s parent or guardian should contact their grade-level Assistant Principal.

Virtual College Visits

While we cannot hold in person college visits at CHS this year, we will still be working with College Admissions Counselors to provide virtual visits to students. We are very excited to have partnered with Western Tech, Chesapeake High School, and Patapsco High School to offer these visits. Visits WILL NOT be held during class times.


Students must still register for this visits on Naviance as we have done in the past. Registered students will recieve a join code for a Google Meets session via Schoology Message prior to the visit.


We have posted the current list of Colleges that are signed up below. We encourage you to check Naviance frequently for updates.


How to Sign Up for College Visits on Naviance:


  • Log into your BCPS One account
  • Click on the orange "Naviance" tile
  • From your home page, click the "Colleges" tab
  • Click on "Research Colleges"
  • Click on "College Visits"
  • Click "Register" for the Colleges your are interested in.



Students in grades 9-12 are welcome to register for all available sessions.

Please note, registration is limited and preference will be given to senior and junior students.

In addition to the Virtual College visits we are offering through CHS, many colleges are doing virtual information sessions and tours while families cannot visit campus.


We have compiled a list of some of our most applied to colleges and the websites to register for these visits.


These infromation sessions are a great opportunity for students from all grades to take advantage of. It's never too early to start that college seach!

**NEW** BCPS HBCU Fair

On Novemebr 11th, BCPS will be hosting a Virtual HBCU College Fair for Seniors. Interested students must sign up on Naviance and complete the application process (through the Common Black College Application, Common App, or colleges), by October 28, 2020 to be considered for instant admissions. Please contact Ms. Weston (lweston@bcps.org) with any questions.

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Information for Seniors

**MUST COMPLETE** 6 Year Plan

Seniors,

Please log in to your Naviance account to complete the 6 Year Plan-Grade 12 Survey. This survey consists of 5 items, and only takes a few minutes to submit.


To help us provide more targeted supports during virtual instruction, we will be using responses to group students into lessons/info sessions that align with their specific post-grad plans. Survey responses will also help to inform the 1-on-1 planning meeting with your counselor, and must be completed ahead of time.


We have begun meeting with seniors and are asking that you please complete the 6 Year Plan Survey ASAP.


Directions:


  • Log in to your BCPS One account
  • Click on the orange "Naviance" tile
  • Go to the "Important To-Dos and Task" section on your home page
  • Click on the "6 Year Plan - Grade 12"
  • Click "Take This Survey"
  • Respond to EACH of the 5 survey items and submit



Please reach out to Ms. Weston (College Counselor) or your school counselor if assistance is needed with this process.

College Application Reminders

With the first big wave of college application deadlines quickly approaching (10/15, 11/1, 11/15, & 12/1), we wanted to send a friendly reminder about the process for submitting your Applications and requesting key supplemental documents (transcripts, recommendations, & test scores).


Transcripts (initial) were uploaded to Naviance earlier this week and are ready for counselors to begin sending to the colleges that you have requested. To avoid missing any of your deadlines, please be sure that you are completing each of the following steps in a timely manner.

Students can check the status of their Transcript/Recommendation submissions through Naviance and should follow up with any outstanding documents. If you need further assistance with any of these steps, please reach out to your School Counselor asap.


1. Add EVERY college to the "Colleges I'm Applying To" list in Naviance.

  • Indicate the correct "Submission Type" & “Deadline” (Common App or Direct to Institution)
    • Common App:
      • Students must merge their Common App and Naviance accounts in order to submit documents to any of the colleges using the CA.
    • Coalition App:
      • Documents will be sent to schools using the Coalition App via Naviance (Direct to Institution), and NOT uploaded directly to the students Coalition account.
    • Other (Direct to Institution):
      • Documents will be sent to schools using via Naviance (Direct to Institution) for all schools that accept eDocs. If your college does not accept electronic document submissions, we will work with you to submit the necessary application materials.

2. Complete the CHS Release of Records Form.

  • This form must be completed before we send ANY documents to colleges.
    • We legally cannot send ANY documents to colleges without receiving this completed document. It needs to be signed by Student & Guardian (if under 18).
    • Naviance “Transcript Request” feature will be locked until the Release of Records Form is received by the School Counseling Office. Once completed, Ms. Weston will unlock the “Transcript Request Feature” (within 2 full school days).
    • Email a copy (of your Response Receipt) to each Teacher that you are requesting to write a Recommendation Letter.

3. Transcripts

  • Submit an electronic Transcript Request through Naviance for EVERY COLLEGE that you are applying to.
  • This must be sent for each school on your "Colleges I'm Applying To" list.
  • Transcripts will be sent directly through Naviance for any college that accepts electronic submissions.

4. Recommendation Letters (BOTH Teachers & Counselors)

  • Must be requested at least 2 weeks prior to application deadline.
  • Complete the Senior Brag Sheet in Naviance.
  • Provide copy of CHS Release of Records Form (Response Receipt) to EACH person that you're requesting to write a letter, AND
  • Send an electronic Request through Naviance. (They physically cannot be sent without this)
  • Notify recommender of any colleges that you add AFTER making the original request.

5. Official Test Scores (Sent Directly to Colleges by the Student)

6. Review & Submit Your College Applications

  • Go to the college’s website and follow the provided instructions.
  • Create account and complete all application sections.
  • Review and submit application.
  • Submit all required supplemental documents before deadline.
  • Mark application as “submitted” in Naviance when completed
  • Monitor your application’s status through each application site.
  • Monitor supplemental document submission status through Naviance.
  • Contact the college Admissions Office with any questions and follow up on any notifications they share.

Senior College Information Night

For those who were unable to attend the Senior College Information Night on Thursday, September 24th, the slides are provided below:

Financial Aid

The Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) is NOW OPEN!


The FAFSA is the form you need to fill out to get any financial aid from the federal government to help pay for college. Each year, over 13 million students who file the FAFSA get more than $120 billion in grants, work-study, and low-interest loans from the U.S. Department of Education.


Every student planning on applying to college MUST complete the FAFSA in order to be eligible for Federal, State, or Institutional Financial AId.


For those who were unable to join us for our Financial Aid Night on October 8th, the slides are below.

The Digital Future of Federal Student Aid