BHS Guidance Newsletter

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1 WINTER BHS Guidance Newsletter School Counselors Mrs. Christine Ayers Ms. Molly McBride Mr. Jeff Fonseca Mr. E.C. Peters Ms. Sue Lamela Letters A-Dr Letters Du-Lal Letters Lam-Q Letters R-Z Student Assistance Counselor Mrs. Erin Biancella, Supervisor of Guidance Mrs. Maria Capriotti and Mrs. Peggy Doty, Guidance Secretaries Barnegatschools.com Phone ext Fax Volunteer! The winter holidays present many opportunities to help those in need. You don t have to be a religious person, a humanist, or a social scientist to understand that a good deed, that eases the suffering of another, benefits not only the receiver and the larger society, but the giver as well. To list a few benefits for young people, volunteering helps develop skills, learn more career options, and make friends. Teens possess idealism about the world and are passionate about different causes. Did something happen at school or in the news that you think is unfair? Take action. Everyone has something to give and when you think you have nothing, remember, a smile or a simple hello can make someone s day. There are many opportunities within our school to help those in need. Visit createthegood.org for DIY volunteering ideas. Think beyond building your resume and begin building character. Naviance Family Connection Family Connection is an online tool, custom designed for Barnegat High School, that you and your school counselor can use together to determine your best path to college and career. If you need your username and password, please see your school counselor. Naviance consists of Four Sections: Colleges, Careers, About Me, and My Planner. This winter, make it a goal to start keeping track of your resume in About Me. Start searching for careers that match your interests by taking a career inventory in Careers. If you re looking to start researching colleges, you have access to all of them in Colleges. Save the Date! OCVTS Visit: December 17 th 9am OCVTS will visit BHS 10 th graders and discuss programs, opportunities, and how to apply. FAFSA Opens January 1 st 2016 Senior parents can start the FAFSA online at fafsa.ed.gov Scholarship Application Opens for Seniors January 29 th and closes Feb. 26 th.

2 Testing It is recommended that students take the SAT or ACT at least one time before the end of junior year. SAT and ACT fee waivers are available to students who have free and reduced lunch. See your counselor for more information. Changes to the SAT The new SAT launches March 5, The essay section is no longer mandatory. Therefore, the composite score is based off of 1600, instead of There is no longer a penalty for wrong answers. The new SAT will have fewer multiple choice options, reduced from 5 options to 4 options. Ten sections have been reduced to four sections. Vocabulary will be more like everyday words. The math section will include more Algebra II and Trigonometry. Looking to prepare for the big test? Here are some links to FREE resources: March2success.com Naviance Prep Me through your Naviance account Number2.com Khanacademy.org Upcoming Tests: SAT collegeboard.org January 23 rd, 2016 Register by Dec. 28 th March 5 th, 2016 Register by Feb. 5 th ACT actstudent.org February 6 th, 2016 Register by Jan. 8 th What are the structural differences between the SAT and ACT? SAT ACT 3 hours (+50 minute optional essay) 2 hours and 55 minutes (+40 minute optional essay) Composite Score Composite Score 1-36 Number of Questions: 154 Numbers of Questions: Sections: Reading Test, Writing and Language Test, Math Test 4 Sections: Reading Test, English Test, Math Test, Science Test Important to Know: It is your responsibility to register and pay for these tests online through the testing company. You may identify colleges and universities that you would like your scores sent to upon registration. If you want to wait to send your scores, you will need to log in to your account with College Board or ACT and select the schools you would like to have your official scores reported to. There is a fee involved per score report, per school. 2

3 Graduation Requirements for the Classes of 2016, 2017, 2018, and 2019 Students at BHS are required to complete a total of 120 credits by the end of their senior year. The state of NJ mandates that students must pass 4 years of English, 3 years of math, 3 years of science, 1 year of a foreign language, 3 years of history, 1 year of health and physical education for every year in high school, 5 credits of a fine art, 5 credits of 21 st century college and career readiness coursework, and 2.5 credits of financial literacy. This is carefully outlined, more specifically, in the Program of Studies available online through the BHS guidance website. Moreover, students must meet a standardized testing requirement. Historically, in the last decade, this test was the High School Proficiency Test (HSPT) and the High School Proficiency Assessment (HSPA), more recently. Those tests have ended and have been replaced by the Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Career (PARCC). During this transition, the NJ Department of Education has identified several opportunities for students to meet a standardized test cut score in order to meet high school graduation requirements. The options are listed below. Seniors have been notified if they have not met a cut score yet and should be working with their counselors to plan for graduation. Underclassmen should be aware of this information as they prepare for graduation. English Language Arts (must meet one of the following) PARCC ELA Grade 9 >=750 (Level 4) or PARCC ELA Grade 10 >=750 (Level 4) or PARCC ELA Grade 11 >= 725 (Level 3) or Math (must meet one of the following) PARCC Algebra I>=750 (Level 4) or PARCC Geometry >=725 (Level 3) or PARCC Algebra II >=725 (Level 3) or SAT Reading* >=400 or SAT Math* >=400 or ACT Reading or ACT PLAN Reading >=16 or ACT or ACT PLAN Math >=16 or Accuplacer Write Placer >=6 or Accuplacer Elementary Algebra >=76 or PSAT 10 Reading or PSAT-NMSQT PSAT 10 Math or PSAT-NMSQT Math* >=40 Reading*>=40 or ACT Aspire Reading >=422 or ACT Aspire Math >=422 or ASVAB-AFQT Composite >=31 or ASVAB-AFQT Composite >=31 or Meet the criteria for the NJDOE Portfolio Appeal Meet the criteria for the NJDOE Portfolio Appeal *This information was taken from the NJDOE and is subject to change with the release of new test data. Meet with your guidance counselor regularly to make sure you are on track for graduation. 3

4 Taking a Your Social Media Fact: Colleges and employers are looking at your social media accounts. If your address starts with xxhottiexxx, it s probably time for TIPS Monitor your social media accounts regularly. Tighten up your security settings. REMOVE: Vulgarity, cursing, photos that feature alcohol consumption or nudity, any reference to or images of illegal activity or discriminatory sentiments of any kind. a for change. First initial.last is a good choice. When communicating with prospective colleges and employers, use formal letter writing format. Do not use emojis or short text, such as ttyl.. NCAA If you are interested in participating in college level athletics, there are some things to consider now: College athletic recruitment starts early. Students should contact college coaches with a letter or by spring of 11 th grade. Be prepared with an athletic resume with stats and/or video of you in action. Visit the NCAA Eligibility Center online and get the facts on requirements for eligibility. You can also speak to your coach or guidance counselor. School Counselor, Mr. Peters, our NCAA liaison, has a wealth of knowledge about NCAA high school requirements that he can offer to all students at BHS. 4

5 Thinking About College? Here s What to Focus on this Winter Freshmen Work hard and get good grades. Ninth grade is the first year that your grades go on your official high school transcript. Start thinking about the courses you want to take next year. Work with your counselor on courses available. Find a few activities. What you do outside of school can be just as important as your school work. Sophomores Sophomore year can be a great time for low pressure visits to colleges and universities. If you can t get on the road this winter or spring break, there are great college search websites such as; Naviance, Collegeboard, and Unigo. Take career inventories online through Naviance. This can be a powerful tool to get you thinking about careers and majors you may not know about. Keep working hard in school. Juniors Plan college visits over Spring Break. Research colleges and start to create a list of schools you think you want to apply to. Register to take the SAT or ACT this Winter or Spring. You must register online. Prep for spring exams with online tools, such as PrepMe through Naviance. Seniors Go to FAFSA.ed.gov and complete your FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid). Colleges require this. The application is lengthy, therefore set time aside to work through it as a family. Monitor your college application status: Always follow up with the colleges you applied to in order to make sure they have your materials. Start looking for local scholarships Use the BHS Website Scholarship link. Keep a strong academic schedule and don t get poor grades. 5

6 Coping with STRESS A little bit of stress is good! It s normal and can actually be healthy. It drives us to grow, find solutions to problems, adapt to situations, and explore the world. Daily stress is a part of life. Daily stress can be caused by various things, such as exams, balancing a busy schedule, preparing for a classroom presentation, managing relationships with friends, or practicing for a big game or event. When we take an exam, for example, this usually causes a normal level of stress. Some ways to deal with that stress is to study to help us do better, take notes, and don t wait until last minute to prepare. The better we get at studying, the less stress we have when we encounter the next exam and so forth. The more practice we get at handling everyday challenges, the better we get at dealing with challenges in general. Here are some other ways to manage stress and stay healthy, mentally and physically: 1. Exercise Being part of an athletic team can be a tremendous outlet for stress. However, you don t need to be an athlete to use exercise to your advantage. Take a walk, connect with nature, ride your bike. 2. Laughter Surround yourself with good friends who make you feel good and make you laugh. Laughing is one of the healthiest things you can do for your body. 3. Eat healthy and often Nourishment is essential to help your body cope with stress. Eat healthy snacks throughout the day to keep your body energized any ready to tackle problems. help our bodies relax. In fact, they can cause our bodies to be more tense. Establish time to sleep! 5. Deep Breathing It may seem simple, but it can be very therapeutic. Focus on deep breathing when you are feeling stressed. Find a quiet spot and breath! Your body needs oxygen to function, and therefore requires more oxygen when you re feeling stressed. 6. Connect With Others Family and friends can help you to feel supported and secure. When you re feeling worried or stressed about something, talk it out with those who are closest to you. 7. Think Positive Focus on things that are good and positive. Allow yourself to dream, wish, and imagine the best that could happen. The better we get at coping with daily stress, the more prepared we are at handling stressful situations that we don t encounter everyday, such as break-ups, divorce, moving, death of a loved one, or family conflict. When the stress you re feeling seems constant and uncontrollable, you may want to reach out for additional support. This may be the right time for you to reach out to your guidance counselor. They can help provide you support or refer you to someone who can help. 4. Sleep Teenagers require a tremendous amount of sleep. Unfortunately, they often stay up late on social media or watching TV. These activities so not reduce our stress or 6

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