WAYS FOR PARENTS TO HELP THEIR TEENS DEAL WITH STRESS
If these methods aren't effective and you feel that your child's stress and behavior is getting worse, you may want to contact your child’s guidance counselor or other professionals. Ms. Sullivan (ext 1108) and Mrs. Rupp (ext 1104) are always there for you and your child.
STAY TUNED: an IMPORTANT ARTICLE FOLLOWS…
We, in the Guidance & Counseling Office borrowed this article from “Feature Articles”@ www.superkids.com in order to spread the word about the difference between studying and homework. We find this to be a continual topic of conversation in our offices when we are with our students! We thought you would like to “hear” what we have to say about this topic…
Studying vs. Homework: 8 Things Your Child (and You) Should Know
The terms ‘studying’ and ‘doing homework’ are often used synonymously. Especially in upper level education, they both mean essentially the same thing -- learning and preparing for school done outside of class time. But there are some important differences in what they mean to your child and how they should be approached.
Studying goes above and beyond what the teacher provides for the student. It necessitates self-starting. Your student should understand that what the teacher assigns, while good for reinforcing and expanding knowledge, is not enough for most students to fully prepare for tests. Every student has different strengths and weaknesses. Each student should identify their own weaknesses, with your help or a teacher's, and use this knowledge to focus their efforts and energy when it comes time to study. This tactic will also help them understand the difference between studying and doing homework, as well as the value of spending their own time outside of school and homework, studying.
About the Author
Mackenzie Cooper received an AB in English at Stanford University. Her best memories from high school are from her water polo team, her calculus study group, and working on the school newspaper. In college, she's been involved in peer tutoring, student government and the student-run newspaper and studied abroad in Florence, Italy. She likes writing (especially fiction), swimming, cooking, and travel.
PSAT TEST RESULTS: PARENT INFORMATION PROGRAM SCHEDULED FOR
Parents of sophomore and junior students who recently took the PSAT practice college entrance exams may receive test results for this program at an upcoming information program.
PSAT tests results will be available for parents at the December 11, 2012, program at 6:30 PM in the Kuhn Center. At that time Mrs. Rigney will interpret PSAT test results. She will also explain what parents need to know about planning for and registering for the ACT and SAT tests which their children will be taking in the winter and spring of this year. In addition, she will discuss the benefits of test prep courses. Parents of sophomore students who took the PSAT test should attend the PSAT program with parents of juniors.
Parents attending the program should enter the building through door # 12 or #19. If parents are unable to attend this program, their students will receive test results on Thursday, December 13.
PLAN scores for sophomores will be mailed to parents.
SENIOR STUDENTS SHOULD COMPLETE THE COLLEGE APPLICATION PROCESS BEFORE CHRISTMAS BREAK
Due to the high volume of application materials that we are processing this year, senior students should attempt to process all of their transcript requests by December 10, 2012. If a student needs a counselor letter of recommendation sent with the application, the application must be submitted to Mrs. Rigney by December 5 to guarantee mailing before the holidays. The student should meet with Mrs. Rigney as soon as possible to initiate the request for a letter of recommendation. If a student is requesting a letter of recommendation from a teacher, he or she must make the request in writing and give the teacher a minimum of three weeks to complete the letter.
Some specific college deadlines are as follows:
Early Action, Early Notification, or Early Decision: usually--postmark November 1
University of Illinois at Champaign-Urbana, Indiana, Butler, Michigan State & University of Wisconsin: priority deadline of November 1
Illinois State University, Northern Illinois, Purdue, DePaul University: postmark November 15 for priority consideration
Marquette, St. Louis U., Miami of Ohio and many private colleges: postmark or received by
SENIOR STUDENTS NEED TO HAVE AFFORDABLE COLLEGES ON THEIR APPLICATION LISTS
During this time of economic stress, it is very important that senior students and parents have a heart to heart discussion regarding the realities of college costs. It is also important that every senior who is applying to college have some very affordable colleges on their application lists. This does not mean that students should not apply to expensive schools, but they should also target some in-state public universities and colleges that offer generous merit scholarship programs. Many families have lost money in their college savings plans. Some families may even need to be prepared for potential job losses or changes. In addition, the uncertain job market means that students need to be cautious about assuming too much debt which can limit their lifestyle options for years after graduation.
Therefore, students need to have a Plan B in place in case their financial aid awards are not satisfactory or the financing options they were hoping for fall through. In addition, it is essential that families submit the FAFSA, free application for federal student aid, in early January to ensure timely processing and planning for financial aid. Families should also work closely with the financial aid officers at their colleges to research all potential financial aid options.
Our public universities in Illinois are still a good value and offer the four year tuition guarantee which means that the student’s tuition will not increase over the four year attendance period. The priority deadline for applying to the University of Illinois is November 1 but students may still apply after that date. The priority deadline for Illinois State University and Northern Illinois University is November 15. If students like an urban university, the University of Illinois at Chicago is a great choice. The neighborhood surrounding UIC has changed dramatically in the past five years and now has an abundance of high quality housing, retail, and restaurant options. Eastern Illinois University recently added a multi-million dollar fine arts center for music, theater, and art and still has their text book rental program which dramatically reduces the costs of textbooks for students. Western Illinois has a four year guarantee on student housing if the student lives on campus and is one of the few universities that offers single dorm rooms for freshmen. The University of Illinois at Springfield offers a U of I degree in a smaller college setting. SIU Carbondale is set in the beautiful Shawnee National Forest region of Illinois and is only a train ride away on Amtrak. SIU Edwardsville near the St. Louis metropolitan region is the fastest growing public university in Illinois, and offers many brand new housing options and numerous high demand majors.
Please also be aware that many private colleges offer generous merit scholarship programs. To check out scholarship offerings, go to the college admission webpage and find the link for scholarships and financial aid. Many schools will list their merit scholarships with amounts and criteria.
College of DuPage is still one of the best community colleges in the nation and offers a way for many students to keep their jobs in the area, save for the last two years of college, and possibly graduate from college with little or no significant debt.
JUNIOR STUDENTS SHOULD BEGIN THE REGISTRATION PROCESS FOR ACT AND SAT TESTING
Junior students usually begin testing with the January or February test dates. Some juniors test as early as the December ACT date.All juniors should plan on taking the ACT or SAT at least two times before the end of junior year. It also is important that juniors plan ahead to avoid conflicts with spring sports and activities. Juniors should also always take the ACT with Writing since many schools require the writing portion of ACT for admission.
The final registration deadline for the December 8 ACT is November 16. The final deadline to register for the February 9 ACT is January 18. The final deadline to register for the December 1 SAT is November 16 and the deadline for the January 26 SAT is January 11. Please note that SAT no longer offers Standby Registration and ACT now has new rules and restrictions on when students can sign up for Standby Registration. Therefore, it is very important that students sign up for their tests by the registration deadline. Also, be aware that students must upload a head and shoulders photo of themelves to the testing webiste as part of the registration process. Students who fail to upload the proper photo will not be permitted to test. For details on ACT test content and requirements, students should pick up the booklet, Preparing for the ACT, which is available in the Student Services area. Students may also visit the testing company websites for more information.
The St. Francis High School Code is 144-383. Students must use this code when registering for their ACT and SAT tests.
SPECIAL ACCOMMODATIONS FOR THE ACT & SAT
Parents of sophomore and junior level students are reminded to contact Ms. Sullivan ASAP at ext. 1108 if you have a child who might qualify for extended time or other accommodations on ACT and SAT testing. Guidelines for requests are given below.
REQUESTING ELIGIBILITY :
DOCUMENTATION described below needs to be ON FILE at St. Francis in the student’s FRESHMAN YEAR . An exception would be if a student is not diagnosed before freshman year.
For either ACT or SAT to consider students for eligibility for testing accommodations, they MUST have DOCUMENTATION from a battery of tests administered by either a psychologist or an MD. The documentation MUST MEET ALL of the FOLLOWING CRITERIA:
For complete protocol for documenting or for any other clarification, log on to www.act.org/aap/disab/policy.html and also www.collegeboard.com/ssd/student/index.html or contact Mary Kay Sullivan x 1108.
NAVIANCE FAMILY CONNECTION PROGRAM PROVIDES A GREAT COLLEGE PLANNING TOOL AT
Students and parents are strongly encouraged to use the Naviance Family Connection college planning tool. St. Francis has a licensing agreement to use this web based program which provides assistance in all areas of the college search and application process. Current seniors were all shown how to use the program last October and again this September. Seniors should use the user names and passwords they created last fall to log on. Current juniors were shown how to use the program last April and again in October. Parents of current juniors and seniors were e-mailed access codes last year and this summer, but if they have not yet created a user name and password and have lost the access code, they may contact Mrs. Ellis at ext. 1142 to obtain the access code again. If underclassmen or their parents wish to use the program, they may obtain the access code by contacting Mrs. Ellis.
The Naviance program already has password protected student information loaded into the system. When a student or parent logs onto the student account, he or she can complete a college search, create a resume, formulate a list of potential colleges, and check the college visit calendar. By clicking on acceptance history, scatter grams, college match, and college compare, the student can compare his or her academic credentials to the college’s acceptance history for St. Francis students from the class of 2006--2010. Once the student has applied to a college, the student can use Family Connection to track if his or her transcript and recommendations were sent by St. Francis.
The Naviance program has many other great features and is an indispensable tool in the college search and application process. If students or parents have questions or problems in using the program, contact Mrs. Rigney, College Counselor, at ext. 1105.
USE THE SFHS WEBSITE FOR COLLEGE PLANNING
Students and parents who are seeking information for college planning should go to the St. Francis High School website and click on the Guidance tab. From this site, you can access information that is helpful in the college planning and financial aid process. By clicking on ACT/ SAT dates, ACT/ SAT comparison chart , or ACT/ SAT Accommodations you can find a great deal of useful information on these college testing programs. By clicking on websites for college information you can access a list which includes sites for completing a college search, registering for the ACT and SAT , investigating careers, and obtaining financial aid and scholarships. By clicking on dates and deadlines, you can check upcoming dates for ACT and SAT testing, college fairs, AP tests, and other important events. Check out the college planning guide for a step by step process to researching and applying to colleges. Click on the weekly guidance bulletin to find out about upcoming college information programs and recent scholarship offerings. Make http://www.sfhsnet.org/top/studentsvcs/guid-home.htm your first stop for college planning, testing, and scholarship information.