Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Guidance Events for the 2014/2015

The Guidance Department is happy to announce a full schedule of BHS Guidance Events for the 2014/2015 school year (links can be found on the right hand side of this blog). In addition to ALL the BHS Guidance Events, we have the schedule for the Guidance Parent Breakfast Series. Based on parental feedback the Guidance Department has identified a variety of topics to cover throughout the school year for any interested parent.

Please note: Senior College Planning Night will now be held on Thursday, October 9th, at 6:30 in the BHS auditorium. 

Monday, August 18, 2014

Common Application

The Burlington High School Guidance Department highly recommends that seniors create a student account on the Common Application Website ASAP.

What is the Common Application?

The Common Application allows a student to complete ONE application which can be sent to multiple colleges.

How many colleges and/or universities subscribe to the Common Application?

Currently nearly 500 colleges and/or universities are Common App members

Why use it?

Once completed online or in print, copies of the Application for Undergraduate Admission can be sent to any number of participating colleges. The same is true of the School Report, Midyear Report, Final Report and Teacher Evaluation forms. This allows you to spend less time on the busywork of applying for admission, and more time on what's really important: college research, visits, essay writing, and senior year coursework.

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Schedules are in the mail

Schedules are in the mail (mailed on 7/8). Please remember that all students must carry six academic courses each semester plus physical education and/or health. The one exception to this is if a junior or senior is enrolled in two or more AP courses.

Also if there is an error or omission in the schedule you need to make arrangements to correct the problem. If your schedule reads “Please Schedule an Appointment with Guidance” then your schedule is invalid and it is imperative that you call to schedule an appointment. There are several options available:

Beginning Monday July 14th and continuing through July 24th, then again August 11th to August 21st, Mr. Joseph Attubato, Support Services Coordinator, and several Guidance Counselors will be available (by appointment only) Mondays through Thursdays from 8:00 a.m. to 12 noon. Please call Mrs. Patty Lewis at 781-270-1780 to schedule an appointment.  

Guidance Counselors will be available during the week of August 18th through August 21st  from 8 A.M. to 12 Noon. During this week, students will be helped on a first come first serve basis.

You are encouraged to correct any problems in your course schedule as early as possible. Doing so will ensure a smooth opening of school for you. If you were not enrolled in your first choice elective course please call the guidance office to be added to a wait-list. Also, please be advised that specific teacher requests cannot be honored.

Monday, June 23, 2014

Bay Path College Fall Offering

Burlington High School in conjunction with Bay Path College is happy to offer a fall 2014 course for Burlington High School seniors and juniors. The course will be Principles of Marketing. This is an excellent opportunity for selected seniors (and juniors) to receive dual credit. Dual credit gives BHS students the opportunity to receive college credit and high school credit. Given that Bay Path has a satellite campus at BHS travel requirements are minimal. Click here for an application and details or stop by the Guidance Office to pick up an application.

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Financial Aid 101

The Financial Aid Night for parents was well attended. Many aspects of the financial aid process were covered. Heather Ward, from Discover, covered all aspects of the financial aid process.

Two very important forms were mentioned last night. The FAFSA and the CSS profile. We encourage parents to investigate both applications ASAP. (Please note, however, that, like an income tax form, the FAFSA can never be filed for seniors prior to January 1st of senior year.) One clarification we would like to make is the cost of the CSS profile. The fee for the initial application and one college or program report is $25. Additional reports are $16. Please see the CSS profile student guide for more specifics.

Fafsa.gov now offers a new feature called the FAFSA forecaster. We recommend parents take advantage of this to determine your estimated financial aid eligibility.

For parents that missed the event please click here for the presentation or feel free to stop but the guidance office to pick up a hard copy of the presentation. If you would like to hear the presentation in its entirety, it will be televised on BCAT. Please check the BCAT web-site for specific times.


Monday, June 16, 2014

KAPLAN Test Prep

Once again KAPLAN will be offering SAT test prep courses this summer and fall to BHS students. Information will be mailed out on June 17th week, but we wanted to post the schedule for students/parents that wanted to get an early jump on test prep. registration. Registration must be completed as soon as possible. Burlington students only pay $249, which is a reduced price. To register please call 1-800-KAP-TEST.

In addition, Kaplan offers Free on-line PSAT, SAT and ACT test prep using the below access codes. Go to kaplanatschool.com/burlington and enter:

SAT On Demand: KAS2014SAT for SAT Prep
ACT On Demand: KAS2014ACT for ACT Prep

PSAT On Demand: KAS2014PSAT for PSAT Prep

The above codes should be entered on the Payment and Confirmation page when you check out online.

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

College Financial Aid 101

Wednesday, June 18th
6:30 PM
Burlington High School
Many families focus on the college search, selection and admission process. We believe that figuring out how to pay for college is also an important part of this process. ‘College Financial Aid 101’ helps families understand the ins and outs of college financial aid.
This seminar will provide information on:

·         How financial aid eligibility is determined
·         How to maximize grants and scholarships
·         How to read your Award Letter

This presentation will also address common financial aid myths and real questions from other families going through this process.

This presentation is designed for parents of freshman, sophomores and juniors, but ALL parents are welcome to attend.

Friday, June 6, 2014

Annual Advice for Incoming 9th Graders

Each spring, the Guidance Department asks the current freshmen for advice for incoming freshmen.  Here are some of the things the current 9th graders like best about BHS, as well as suggestions they have for future students to make their first year at BHS both productive and fun.

Advice for the 8th Grade:

Get involved in sports and clubs to make a lot of friends.*
Always get your homework done or you won't understand.*
Don't stress out about coming to high school too much!  It's not that bad and it goes by quick!
Be involved in different clubs and sports, like Science Olympiad and track.
Stay on task.
Talk to more people.
Be yourself, have fun and take your grades seriously.
Don't stress out. It's not bad.
Don't do anything really stupid.
Visit the school this summer to find your classes.
Don't be afraid to take honors English.
Don't procrastinate.
Pack your backpack with only the things you need.
It's normal to ask teachers for extra help.
Freshman year counts!
If you need help, go to a teacher.
Do not skip an assignment or a class and you'll do great.
Don't be so worried about "honors" or anything like that, because it's not as scary as people make it
    out to be.
Have fun !! but still focus on school.
Grow up and buckle down.
Make upperclassman friends. Older friends are the best.
You have to work extremely hard and put in much more effort than you did at MSMS.
Pay attention in class.
Don't randomly stop in the hallway.
ALWAYS study for tests and quizzes.
Use your iPad wisely.
There is no pool on the third floor.
Do what your (sic) told.
Plan ahead.
Don't be shy and don't be annoying.
Be yourself and always try your best.
You gotta study for every single test.  You'll regret every second of not studying when you get your
Become more mature. People don't hold your hand anymore. There is more independence.
High school isn't harder. It's just different.
Don't be scared, just jump in and before you know it you'll love it.

*A lot of students recommended these two tips in particular:  get involved, do your homework.

We look forward to welcoming you to BHS in the fall. Have a safe and happy summer!

Thursday, June 5, 2014

College Topics For The Summer

The Guidance Department will host a breakfast called “College Topics For The Summer”. The purpose of this breakfast is so the counseling staff can give a very brief overview of important tasks associated with the college selection and application process. Although this event is geared for parents of juniors, ALL parents are welcome to attend. Please join us for this informative event. We look forward to seeing you on June 11th at 8:30 AM in the Guidance College and Career Center. We ask that parents RSVP at 781-270-1780. 

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Making the Most of College Visits

Despite all the opportunities to explore colleges through websites, virtual tours, and social media, nothing beats an actual visit to a campus.  April is a great time to tour a few colleges that you’re considering because the weather is warmer (hopefully), juniors have a week off for vacation, and colleges are still in session, which means you get to see the campus when it's active and busy.

Here are some tips for making the most of a visit to a college.

1) Let the admissions office know you're coming.  Sign up for an official campus tour, including the information session if you have time.  It's important for admissions to know that you have their college on your radar screen and vice versa. Some colleges even track how much "demonstrated interest" a student has shown through contact with them, and the college tour can be a significant factor for some schools.

2) Think about specifics.  Ask questions that apply to YOU and your wants and needs for getting the best possible college education and campus experience. These may include questions about academic programs, sports, extracurricular activities, financial aid, dietary considerations and/or personal or social values.  Be honest with yourself, and know that it’s OK to ask “quality of life” questions, in addition to questions related to majors and careers.  If you’re a vegetarian, and the only options in the dining hall are “pizza and salad” (as one of our BHS counselors was once told by a tour guide), if you’re political and the campus is known for being apolitical, or if you absolutely must be on a campus with a marching band and they don’t have one, it’s OK to say, “This college isn’t going to be the right fit for me.”

One side note about questions:  While specific questions are always helpful, try not to ask questions that are easily answered elsewhere, such as on a college’s website. For example, asking an admissions officer whether there's an ice skating rink on campus can indicate that you haven't done much advance research. Asking how much ice time is available for different competitive or club sports shows that you’ve done a little homework.  Try to get answers to the big questions before you visit.

3) Take notes.  You can take notes on your phone or on paper or both.  Ask the guide if it's OK to take pictures. (It usually is, but as a courtesy you should ask. As a general rule, though, NEVER take pictures that include the faces of students on campus.)   Here's a photo-taking tip:  before you enter a building, take a picture of the name of the building or of a sign that indicates you’re in a specific department or area. This way you'll know that all the pictures that follow were taken in that specific place, and you don’t have to write as much down.

4) Ask random questions of random people.  Don’t be afraid to ask various students or professors on campus what they think of the place.  (This can be a great task for one of your parents or siblings, if they accompany you.)  Sometimes people who are unaffiliated with the official tours or orientation days can provide important insights, for better or worse, into security, teaching assistants, class size, dorm life and “partying.”

5) Be reasonable AND also trust your gut.  Let’s face it, touring a campus on a cold or rainy day is not going to be a lot of fun, but don’t rule out a college because of uncontrollable factors, like the weather or a less-than-stellar tour guide.  On the other hand, sometimes after a tour or after doing research, a campus simply “doesn’t feel right,” even if you saw it on a beautifully sunny day.  If that’s the case for you, take the college off your list.  Part of touring is the process of elimination.

6) Finally, be sure to keep refining your list of wants and needs, and if you find that those are changing, complete new college searches.  Talk to friends, relatives and teachers about their college experiences and alma maters, but remember that you are the one who will be spending the next four years on a campus. Ultimately, the college you choose should be one that is the best fit for YOU.