• Counseling Department Newsletter

    June 2020

    Upcoming Dates

    ➢ June 5 - Senior check out (return books, iPads, etc. See details below under “Seniors”)

    ➢ June 9 - Class of 2020 Graduation!!! (See details below under “Seniors”)

    ➢ June 19 - Last day of school for grades 9-11

    Seniors: With graduation right around the corner, huge congratulations are in order for the Class of 2020. We are very proud of you! For details about end of the year events go to the Graduation 2020 tab on the left at https://www.mercerislandschools.org/Page/16184 where you will see links for both Senior Checkout (June 5) and Graduation (June 9). And if you have not done so yet, make sure you have completed the required Senior Graduation Survey as it will indicate where you want your final transcript to be sent. Final transcripts will be sent the week of June 29 with no additional fees or actions required. Congrats, Class of 2020!

    Learning Services Fireside Chat: “Stress: Causes, Effects and Management” Members of the Mercer Island School District Staff will be taking time to talk about mental health, specifically stress during these challenging times. This live webinar is intended to support students, families and community members with understanding stress and its causes, effects and strategies for management. There will also be time for participants to ask questions as it relates to this topic and its connection to learning forward during school closure. Additional information regarding the webinar can be found below or in the Learning Services Fireside Chat - Stress.pdf .

    When: Wednesday, June 3, 5:00 PM to 6:00 PM Access: Zoom

    Webinar, please click the link below to join the webinar: https://mercerislandschools.zoom.us/j/99122080908

    Additional Upcoming Topics: 6/10/2020 5-6pm: Understanding Meltdowns: a Sensory Approach to Self-regulation in Challenging Times 6/17/2020 5-6pm: Managing a Meltdown at Any Age

    Summer School Update: Mercer Island School District is offering summer school this year for credit recovery and other courses. Due to the continuing concerns over Covid-19, Summer School courses will be online. The course catalog, registration and payment information are found at https://www.mercerislandschools.org/Page/13809. The registration deadline is Wednesday, June 3.

    College Search Resource: How can students/families find out more about colleges especially while colleges and schools are closed? Go to https://www.strivescan.com/virtual/colleges-list/ where there are almost 400 different audio or video files provided by reps from colleges across the country. Access is of no charge and supported exclusively by the National Association of College Admissions Counseling (NACAC). Along with 4-year public, 4-year private, 2-year and international colleges there are sessions dedicated to essay writing, how to interview with an admissions officer, how to find the best fit, Washington State Public Universities, Washington Undergraduate Exchange (states in the western US which allow Washington residents to pay tuition at a reduced out-of-state cost) and much, much more. Check it out as you research your post-high school options!

    Colleges That Change Lives: CTCL is a non-profit organization dedicated to the support of a student-centered college search. Its program is designed to offer students and parents a new perspective on college admission, to address some of the misconceptions about college admission, and to help students connect with representatives from CTCL-member colleges. This free program will be on July 30 at the Westin Seattle at 7:00pm. The program consists of a 30-minute information session followed by a 1.5 hour college fair. For a list of member colleges and to register go to https://ctcl.org/seattle-wa-july-30-2020/.

    Oregon Private College Week - From July 27-31, several private colleges in Oregon will be hosting virtual visits and information sessions, including Corban, George Fox, Lewis & Clark, NW Christian, Pacific U, Werner Pacific and Willamette. For details and to register go to https://oaicu.org/oregon-private-college-week/. Test Optional Colleges and Covid-19 - As you have heard in the news, due to Covid-19 some colleges are reconsidering their admissions testing requirements. Before Covid, several colleges already were test optional. To find out which universities are test optional go to http://fairtest.org/.

    SAT Testing: The June test date has been cancelled due to Covid-19 concerns. College Board is adding a September test date. For more information go to https://collegereadiness.collegeboard.org/sat.

    ACT Testing: The June 13 ACT has been cancelled. As of this writing there is a test scheduled for July 18 (regular registration deadline is June 19). For more information go to: https://www.act.org/content/act/en/products-and-services/the-act/registration.html#dates.

    Notes on Grading and Attendance during school closure From last month’s School Board meeting, the district’s attendance and grading policies for semester 2 were outlined. For the remainder of the school year students are expected to:

    ● actively engage in their classwork and classroom activities. This includes attending virtual classroom sessions, completing assignments and maintaining a connection with their teachers when extra help is needed.

    ● students who pass classes with at least a 60% grade overall will have an “A” grade on their 2nd semester transcript

    ● students who do not pass (under 60% overall grade) will earn an incomplete (“INC”) grade, in which case they have until the end of the first semester next year to complete the work required for an “A” grade.


    The Counseling Team encourages ALL students to continue putting their best efforts into their online studies for several reasons, including:

    ● preparation for next year’s coursework

    ● study habits will carry forward to when school re-opens

    ● teachers/counselors will be writing letters of recommendations for students

    ● it is best to earn credit for courses this semester than to have to do additional work into the summer and possibly into the school year If you are having difficulties with your studies or need additional support, please send a message to your school counselor. We are here to help! 

    Student Wellness Resources: The Resource and Referral Place (R&R) at MIHS provides convenient student access to mental health professionals. Help is available for all types of issues including stress, relationships, depression, eating issues, alcohol and drug issues, anger and legal difficulties. Students can stop by the R&R offices opposite the Attendance Office to make an appointment with either Ariel Schachter or Chris Harnish. Parents also can inquire about services and resources at ariel.schachter@mercerislandschools.org (Ariel) or chris.harnish@mercerislandschools.org (Chris).