Jr./ Sr. High School Guidance Department Contacts:
Jill Bruder: email@example.com (K-12) Prevention Specialist
Amber Uranko: firstname.lastname@example.org (7-12) School Counselor
Jennifer Mosier: email@example.com (7-12) Guidance Secretary
Reminder: please do not contact the guidance department in case of an emergency needing immediate assistance, instead reach out to the Columbia Country Crisis Hotline 1-800-222-9016.
For Community and Mental Health Resources, please see the Community Resources tab located under Links.
Upcoming Dates/Events 20-21 School Year:
- Student's upcoming school year schedules have been mailed home. If there is a gap in a student's schedule, please reach out to the guidance department via email for assistance
- Financial Aid Night: September 7, 2020 Time to Be Announced: Benton High School Library (Seniors & Parents/Guardians)
- FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid) Opens October 1st Online: https://studentaid.gov/h/apply-for-aid/fafsa
- ASVAB: October 5, 2020 8:00 AM: High School Cafeteria (Juniors)
- PSAT: October 14, 2020 (Sophomores & Juniors that signed up)
- Scholarship Search: November 2, 2020 1:00-2:00 PM Millville High School Library (Seniors)
- FAFSA Completion: November 2, 2020 2 Sessions Millville High School Library (Seniors-see below)
- Session 1: 2:00-3:00 PM (Parent/Guardian & Student)
- Session 2: 3:00-4:00 PM (Parent/ Guardian & Student)
- Only attend one session if planning on attending college
- A link will be emailed to students closer to time to sign up for a session
The PSAT/NMSQT will be offered October 14, 2020 to incoming 10th and 11th grade students. Students must register by May 29,2020 using the Microsoft Forms link that was emailed to their school e-mail. Cost is $17.00, fees can be paid by cash or check: MASD (mail in or drop off) by August 31, 2020.
Please see below for the SAT and ACT Dates and Registration Deadlines for the 20-21 School Year:
|August 29, 2020
||July 31, 2020
|September 26, 2020
||August 26, 2020
|October 3, 2020
||September 4, 2020
|November 7, 2020
||October 7, 2020
|December 5, 2020
||November 5, 2021
|March 13, 2021
||February 12, 2021
|May 8, 2021
||April 8, 2021
|June 5, 2021
||May 6, 2021
|To Register visit: sat.org/success
|*If you require a fee waiver, please contact the Guidance Office
|September 12, 2020
||August 14, 2020
|October 24, 2020
||September 18, 2020
|December 12, 2020
||November 6, 2020
|February 6, 2021
||January 8, 2021
|April 17, 2021
||March 12, 2021
|June 12, 2021
||May 7, 2021
|July 17, 2021
||June 18, 2021
|To Register visit: act.org/
|*If you require a fee waiver, please contact the Guidance Office
*Students should regularly check their school e-mail for information or stop in the guidance office for an application when available!
2019-2020 FINANCIAL AID PRESENTATION: (This will be updated with the 20-21 document when available)
- All Male students are required by law to register for the Selective Service within 30 days of their 18th birthday.
Planning Your Future Resources:
*For those students wanting to play DI or DII sports in college, should begin planning as early as 9th grade.
19-20 School Year Info:
For those of you planning on attending college after high school, utilize this award letter comparison sheet from PHEAA to help you make the best financial plan for your future: https://www.pheaa.org/partner-access/toolkit-downloads/fafsa/pdf/Award_Worksheet.pdf
Resource for Senior Parents from CSIU:
Top 11 “To Do’s” if You are a Parent of a 2020 Graduating Senior
These are unprecedented times. If you are the parent of a senior there may be an additional layer of anxiety as so many important decisions/events have been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. The following list provides some ideas for supporting your senior during this crazy time as well as ways you can move forward with some of those events/activities/decisions.
Listen. This is a crazy time for your senior, and what they may need the most right now is for you to listen. They are likely being bombarded with all sorts of advice...from their friends, other adults, social media….but, what they may really need is some space to grieve. They have lost so much and, NO ONE knows how they feel.
Spend time helping your senior stay connected with friends and family. Provide them with private time to connect with friends. Connect with parents of friends, so together you can monitor how your senior’s group of friends are coping. This can help identify anyone who may be struggling.
If your senior begins to withdraw and/or show other warning signs, make sure you are communicating with him/her. If you believe they need to talk with someone else about how they are feeling, contact your local physician regarding opportunities that may exist (even virtual ones). Make sure you screen these options much like you would any other health care worker. Ask for recommendations and research their services on-line, etc.
Help your senior make the most of the time he or she does have. If post-high school plans have not been solidified yet, you’ll have to become creative in helping them make those decisions.
Many seniors had college visits planned. There are several virtual platforms where you can still do that. Here are a two:
If your student is considering technical school options or apprenticeships upon graduation and still have decisions to make, you can also discover information about these programs on the following platforms:
They can also explore training programs in PA and throughout the US on the following websites.
If your senior is planning on directly entering the workforce upon graduation this is also a great time to get “the lay of the land.” Covid has significantly impacted employment opportunities across the nation so it is critical for you to help them see what opportunities do exist. Check with your local Career Link https://www.pacareerlink.pa.gov/jponline/ and visit the Bureau of Labor Statistics to see what high priority entry level positions exist in your area. 2019 High Priority Occupations
Your senior should be taking care of end-of-year business. Together, you should schedule a virtual conference with his/her counselor. School counselors are working tirelessly to support their students at home and many district counselors have great checklists and suggestions for seniors. Be looking for upcoming important dates such as AP testing/procedures, etc. Also be sure to understand procedures for securing important info related to transcripts and scholarship opportunities, etc.
If your senior is at a CTC or taking an AP class, contact the school counselor to determine how and when the NOCTI, AP, etc. exams are going to be given. Check back regularly as some of these decisions are still pending.
FASFA (Financial Aid) Deadline still stands at May 1st. So you and your senior should begin that process. It is important you understand what information you need to apply because it may be more difficult to get that information together right now. For the 2020-21 FAFSA, you will be using your 2018 income information to complete your forms. However, if your financial circumstances have changed as a result of Covid 19, you can amend that application once it is complete. A parent’s job loss is considered as extraordinary circumstances. Students can ask for a professional judgment review or a financial aid appeal at any time during the semester when justified by extraordinary circumstances. Pay attention to opportunities for financial aid guidance.
Students who are pursuing post-secondary education and training should be spending time researching and applying for scholarships. Check with your school counselor for local opportunities but also spend time researching other opportunities. If you have been accepted to a program research any opportunities that may be available through that institution. Investigate opportunities through family affiliations such as parent employers, your church, any professional organizations parents belong to.
There are so many things up in the air for your seniors. Many of the more social aspects of senior year may be a more immediate concern to them than the academic challenges that COVID 19 has imparted. The loss of spring sports seasons, the district musical, spring concerts, and other traditions will likely dominate what seniors are focussed on as the school year wanes. What will graduation look like? What happens to prom, senior night, yearbook etc.? Pay attention to communication from your school district. You don’t want your senior to miss an opportunity to participate. Share your thoughts/concerns in a constructive way. Don’t air your concerns on social media. Communicate directly with the schools and be patient. No one has ever been faced with anything like this before. Recognize that many of these answers may come later since we don’t know when we will be able to gather again.
We all feel this situation is out of our control and your senior is no different. Adults in the home can help give some control to seniors by including them in family decision-making when appropriate. Letting them drive dinner plans, or asking them to weigh in on potential celebrations when the restrictions are lifted are examples of how we can give them some control. Discuss with them how they may want to help. If your senior sews would they like to make masks? Can they gather cupboard items for local food drives. Is the elementary school looking for people to read books to elementary students? Helping can provide seniors with a bit of control during these uncertain times.
Please consider how you can help your student capture the positives of their senior year for years to come. Doing so can help them refocus on the positives when they are constantly being bombarded by the negatives. Consider having them organize their photos, gather photos from friends etc. A digital memory book, an ordered photobook or even a simple handwritten journal may help them to zero in and make sure they don’t lose their joyful moments to the reality of what it means to be a COVID senior.
Here is a great article with additional suggestions on how to help your senior cope with this situation. Click here to access the article:
With Senior Year In Disarray, Teens And Young Adults Feel Lost. Here's How To Help!
Note: If you are a parent of a CTC student, please click HERE for
additional recommendations and considerations.
Resources for Junior Parents from CSIU:
Top 12 “To Do’s” if you are a Parent of a Junior (Class of 2021)
Listen. This is a crazy time for your Junior, and what they may need the most right now is for you to listen. They are likely being bombarded with all sorts of advice...from their friends, other adults, social media….but, what they may really need is some space to grieve.
Spend time helping your junior stay connected with friends and family. Provide them with private times to connect with friends. Connect with parents of friends so together you can monitor how your seniors group of friends are coping. This can help identify anyone who may be struggling.
If your junior begins to withdraw and/or show other warning signs make sure you are communicating with him/her. If you believe they need to talk with someone else about how they are feeling contact your local physician regarding virtual opportunities that may exist. Make sure you screen these options much like you would any other health care worker. Ask for recommendations...research their services on-line etc.
Help them make the most of their time. They may or may not have had a chance to schedule for next year. It would be a good time to reach out to his/her school counselor and schedule a virtual appointment. Make sure your junior is aware of how and when scheduling is going to occur and/or when schedule changes will be handled. If your junior was planning on completing an internship or taking college courses during their senior year, inquire about how and when those decisions need to be made. There are other things to explore. What AP/dual enrollment/on-line and/or college course options are available during senior year? What are the prerequisites for these programs and how does your student enroll? The school counselor should be able to help you with all of this information.
Most students take SAT and/or ACT’s during their senior year.
You can find the most current information for SAT’s during the Covid-19 pandemic here: Coronavirus Updates for Students Taking the SAT
You can find the most current information for ACT’s during the Covid-19 pandemic here. April 2020 National Exam COVID-19 - The ACT Test
This may be a good time to entertain a test prep course. Many students have extra time on their hands and there are many test prep resources that can help students practice and prepare for SAT’s and ACT’s. Reviews.com provides an overview of some of the available courses including free options. The Best ACT/SAT Test Prep Courses Also check with your school counselor about test prep courses he/she recommends.
Junior year is the time that many students complete college visits. Nothing beats the real thing but don’t wait till next year to get started visiting. Many colleges, technical schools, and universities have on-line virtual tours. Below are two platforms that your junior can explore. Use this time to “visit” lots of schools so you can narrow down visits for next year to your top two or three choices.
~ Strive Virtual College Exploration - Schedule and Registration
~ Virtual College Tours, Virtual Reality Education
If your junior is struggling with where they are headed after graduation, the extra time they have right now can be used to explore their options. Both the Pennsylvania CareerZone and O*NET OnLine websites provide comprehensive platforms where students can complete interest inventories, explore various careers, discover required training, investigate preparation programs and much more. The economic impact of COVID-19 has also significantly impacted the employment landscape in most communities. Students could also explore what high priority occupations exist and determine compatibility with their interests and desire for post-high school training. 2019 High Priority Occupations
8. Juniors who are participating in AP classes and/or dual enrollment classes should contact school counselors to get details about how testing/assessment will occur. CTC students and their parents should also schedule a virtual meeting with the CTC counselor and/or administrator to determine what options they have for documented required hours that have been missed because of the closing of schools.
9. Many Juniors are also beginning to look beyond their senior year and planning for postsecondary opportunities. If your junior has a well defined plan you and he/she may also be starting to develop a strategy for financial planning. If that is the case you may be interested in some of the financial aid planning seminars planned by PHEAA.
10. Juniors are facing some of the same losses that seniors are and these may seem more immediate and devastating that the academic challenges COVID-19 has imparted. Spring sports season, the prom, district musicals and concerts have all been cancelled. Pay attention to communication from your school district. You don’t want your junior to miss an opportunity to participate. Share your thoughts/concerns in a constructive way. Don’t air your concerns on social media. Communicate directly with the schools and be patient. No one has ever been faced with anything like this before. Recognize that many of these answers may come later since we don’t know when we will be able to gather again.
11. We all feel this situation is out of our control and your senior is no different. Don’t let the distraction of COVID-19 take away things that can still occur for your students. Was your son/daughter planning on taking his/her driver’s test? Was he/she volunteering in the community. Find ways to allow he/she to continue with these activities. This can help give some control to students. Also include them in family decision-making. Allowing them to plan dinner, or asking them to weigh in on potential celebrations when the restrictions are lifted are examples of how we can give them some control. Discuss with them how they may want to help. If your student sews would they like to make masks? Can they gather cupboard items for local food drives. Is the elementary school looking for people to read books to elementary students? Helping can provide students with a bit of control during these uncertain times.
12. Finally consider how you can help your student capture the positives of their junior year for posterity. Doing so can help them refocus on the positives when they are constantly being bombarded by the negatives. Consider having them organize their photos, gather photos from friends etc. A digital memory book, an ordered photobook or even a simple handwritten journal may help them to zero in and make sure they don’t lose their joyful moments to the reality of what it means to be in high school during COVID-19.
Special Note: If you are a parent of a CTC student, please click HERE for
additional recommendations and considerations.
Top 10 “To Do’s” if you are a Parent of a Middle Schooler Transitioning into High School (Resource from the CSIU):
Introduction: We are all experiencing unusual times in education as a result of COVID 19. This document was developed to assist parents of middle school students transitioning to the high school next school year. (Fall of 2020).
COVID-19 has likely disrupted the transition planning process that your school district had planned to help students schedule classes, choose extracurricular activities, and become familiar with their new academic setting. What can you do during this lock-down time to help your child face this upcoming transition? Most important, listen to your student. These are overwhelming times for them, just like they are for you. Talk with them about what they are concerned about as the transition to the high school. Use that conversation to review the following list and choose activities that can address those concerns.
1. Tune into Your District: Your school district is likely planning activities to address middle school to high school transition. Take advantage of anything that is offered. Make sure you are watching the district website and reading communications from school. Your student should closely monitor his/her email as many school counselors are reaching out to students to schedule virtual sessions to discuss course selection. Also pay close attention to any fall mailings that might inform you of opportunities to visit the high school and/or participate in planned orientation events.
2. Do a website deep-dive: Spend some time familiarizing yourself with the district high-school website. Many of these websites include great photos, articles, and some even include virtual building tours. Does the high-school have a FB page? Is there an Instagram account? It is very likely that your future high schooler is already familiar with these resources. but it never hurts to check.
3. Is there a sample schedule? Sometimes high school websites include sample schedules that can be helpful to incoming students. How many periods are there? What do the lunch cycles look like? When does music and band occur? Understanding the general characteristics of the high school schedule will be very helpful to the student when it comes time to schedule classes.
4. Does the High School Website include a Student and/or Parent Handbook? If so this is another great transition activity for you to review with your student. Many times there are differences in sign-out procedures, procedures for reporting absences etc. between middle and high school.
5. What extracurricular activities would be a good fit for your future highschooler? The district website is another great resource for exploring extra-curricular options. Most high schools have a host of sports, clubs and organizations that are an important part of educating highschoolers. These extras provide important platforms for students to develop a host of workplace skills that can be as critical as academic proficiency for adults. The high school website usually has a place where you can explore competitive sports options, as well as clubs and organizations. Also look for FaceBook and/or Instagram pages for high school organizations sports. The many photos and posts can serve as a great snapshot for students to begin to think about what they might want to join.
6. Get to know high school staff virtually! Most high school websites provide a staff directory (at the least) but usually include staff websites. Many of these staff websites provide pictures and some background information about staff including training, interests and involvement in other school activities. Reviewing this info often helps students identify potential 9th grade teachers.
7. High school web pages may also contain guidance and health information. Help your student identify his/her counselor. If you have pressing concerns, reach out early and introduce yourself. If your child has health concerns the school nurse is another great contact. Keep your correspondence short. Introduce yourself and your child and just let them know you are looking forward to working with them. If you have questions, limit the number you ask as these staff members may be very busy with current students/families.
8. Most high school webpages include a dedicated parent page. There can be significant differences between middle and high school with regard to how to access student information on the district portal, requesting special transportation etc. Make sure you survey this information prior to the start of the school year.
9 . Help your kids stay connected. Research says that transition to high school is a critical milestone for students and one of the things they worry the most about is “fitting in.” This has become further complicated by social distancing which has to feel like purgatory for many kids. Provide opportunities for your student to stay connected with friends. Allow private time for them to connect. Connect with parents of friends so together you can monitor how your seniors group of friends are coping. This can help identify anyone who may be struggling.
10. Finally, if your future high school student begins to withdraw and/or show other warning signs make sure you are communicating with him/her. If you believe they need to talk with someone about how they’re feeling, contact your local physician regarding possible virtual opportunities. Make sure you screen these options much like you would any other health care worker. Ask for recommendations...research their services on-line etc.