School Counseling Newsletter


National School Counseling Week / February 6-10, 2017
THEME: “School Counseling: Helping Students Reach Their Potential”

During the week, tips for students on how to reach their potential were conveyed. Staff and students were encouraged to wear their college attire to support postsecondary education. Staff are especially thanked for their continued support of the School Counseling Program. 

School Counseling Advisory Council: Parents interested in joining the Advisory Council for the School Counseling Department are asked to contact Dr. Rose Paolino, Department Head, at 937-4360 x7118.  The final meeting of the year will be held on Wednesday, April 26th. New members are welcome! The goal for the Council is to increase communication between parents, school and community in matters of secondary school guidance services.

ALL GRADES: It is advisable that any student who is currently failing a class meet with their teacher during office hours.  School Counselors are also available, via appointment, to discuss grades and interventions. Peer tutoring and the Tutoring/Homework Center are located in Room D14. Please see Mr. Hamasian.

Course Selection: All students (Grades 9-11) will be meeting with their School Counselor to finalize their course selection for 2017-2018. This process will be completed, as the students come to the school counseling office, via their English classes during the month of February and beginning of March.

Community Service: Stay involved in school-community-based extracurricular activities that interest you or enable you to explore career interests. Remember: 40 hours of community service entitles you to wear a cord at Graduation! Hours must be completed by May 1 of Senior Year! (not to mention a plus for college applications and scholarship/award recognition) A suggested list of places to complete your hours is available in the School Counseling Office.

FRESHMEN met with the School Counseling Department during the month of January. At that time, all freshmen entered their Student Success Plan goals for the year. Please review your child’s goals with them, which may be found on Naviance (My Planner tab).
SOPHOMORE Student Success Planning/Portfolio sessions are scheduled for April. Sophomores will also be participating in the “Do What You Are” personality assessment during the month of March. The “Do What You Are” is completed via NAVIANCE, a web based program which students are expected to utilize for their college and career search. This assessment is a component of their Student Success Plan. Results of the DWYA will provide students with valuable information regarding their individual learning styles, careers and colleges that match their interest.

PSAT Results Back: Sophomores received their PSAT results during the week of February 6th-15th. During that time, School Counselors explained their results and “next steps” in preparation of the Junior PSAT in October. Also, students created and linked their College Board accounts with Khan Academy. Khan Academy provides FREE personalized practice tests for the PSAT and SAT along with tutorials in all subject areas.

JUNIOR portfolio sessions are being scheduled, with the student and parent, through the months of February-May. The session will encompass the student’s success plan and discussion regarding the student’s postsecondary plans. Notification will be mailed home.

College-Bound Juniors: Winter and spring are very important times for you to be visiting college campuses so you know where to apply in September!! Campuses give a completely different impression in the summer when they are deserted than during the academic year. It is important that you:
-Make an appointment with your counselor to review and finalize the colleges you have selected, and to ask about how you visit college campuses.
-Use Naviance to see the probability that you will be accepted to a college based on your GPA, rank and PSAT scores.
- Ask parents to plan for the April break and visit your far-away campuses.
-Use your winter/spring weekends to visit campuses close by.

FINANCIAL AID: Important Event/Date
Financial Aid Night (FAFSA): May 11, 2017

FAFSA: The Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) may be submitted beginning October 1, 2017. For more information, please go to:

SENIORS need to maintain a high level of grades. Colleges will be requesting mid-year reports. When you receive those long awaited Acceptance Letters, please bring a copy to your school counselor! We look forward to your participation in “College/Career Signing Day” on May 5th.

 GATEWAY Application Day is March 17th. The session is full, however, there is a wait list. Sign up in the School Counseling Office if interested in attending Gateway CC in the fall.

 ALUMNI DAY/January 5, 2017: Seniors had an opportunity to speak with students from the Class of 2016 along with alumni from 2013-2015! Alumni discussed topics frequently asked by seniors when making their postsecondary decisions.

SENIORS/SAT considering attending a 4-year college should take the SAT Tests. Students who are interested in highly competitive schools should consider taking the SAT II subject tests. Check with your college of interest as to what SAT II tests they require.


SAT Test Dates (2017)

Registration Deadlines

Late Registration


March 11

February 10

February 21-28

May 6 (WHHS)

April 7

April 18-25

June 3 (WHHS)

May 9

May 16-24

The ACT has become another option for most college admissions and is recommended. Many students take the ACT to see if they score at a higher level than the SAT. The ACT is more of an academically orientated test compared to the SAT. The ACT is given at nearby schools.

Register: www.                                    

ACT Test Dates (2017)


Registration Deadlines

Late Registration


April 8

March 3

March 4-17

June 10

May 5

May 6-19


  • Khan Academy: Online tutorial for all grades.  Khan Academy is not only the number one suggested resource from College Board for Practice of the NEW SAT, but also for other subject areas. There are practice exercises, instructional videos, and a personalized learning dashboard for students to study at their own pace. Subjects include: math, science, computer programming, history, art history, economics, and more. Visit

FairTest/Test Optional Schools is the National Center for fair and open testing for college admittance. The website ( lists colleges/universities who deemphasize the use of standardized tests by making admission decisions about a substantial numbers of applicants without using the SAT or ACT. This is a valuable site, especially if your test scores are not indicative of your capabilities for college admission.

NCAA: Any students interested in playing sports at the college level should check with the Athletic Department to see if they are eligible. Students must register with the NCAA in order to participate in any Division I or Division II sports, or receive any form of athletic scholarship for college. Forms are available in the Athletic Department.

Scholarships information is available in the School Counseling Office and Career Center.  A continuous list of scholarship information will be updated on a monthly basis and accessed via Naviance (under college tab) and student email. We also encourage all students to register with a very reliable scholarship source.

NEW this year: Scholarship Club! This Club meets every Monday, period 8, and continues until 2:15pm. Check your email for notification of the meetings so you can sign up each week on Naviance. See Mrs. Doraz or Mrs. Merced if you have any questions.

Selective Service: Any males who are approaching age 18 MUST register with the selective service to be eligible for Financial Aid. For more details, please visit your area post office.

Federal student aid opportunities: Visit www.Federal Does the college you are applying to award money for your academic grades? Check out for a comprehensive merit aid scholarship database. 

Counselor's email:  Counselor Directory, by student's last name
Dr. Rose Paolino, x7118  A-Ba, Pellot - Phifer
Mrs. Norma Merced x7124 Bb-Dao, Pico - Ramirez 
Mrs. Heather Kannengeiser,  x7123  Daog-Gum, Rosario - Sandler
Mrs. Heather Doraz, x7121  Gun-L, Ramos – Ronan Ms. Dora Barnes, x7120 M-PAU, Santaliz—Shabz Mrs. Deborah Kachmar, x7122 Pav-Smith (Gr. 9) & Spec. Services A-Z Mrs. Holly Benedetti x7119 Sn-Z, Serenson – Smith