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Counselor's Corner (Newsletter)

Grizzly Guidance

Directions and Connections


Thanks to all of you for your patience and cooperation with our schedule pick up and change process.  Our goal is always to have the quickest and most equitable process possible in helping students settle into their classes and, with very few exceptions, we had all of our schedule changes done within the first week.  So thanks again for your cooperation and help!


***Please note that spring schedule adjustment requests are not being considered at this time.  A window will open up for this later in the fall term.  Dates and process will be forthcoming.


During the next few months we will continue with grade level advising in the classrooms. Our focus will be on Seniors during this busy college application period and making sure they are on track to graduate.  Later in the fall we will be focusing our attention more on Juniors and making sure they are dialed in to important information regarding college and other post-high school pursuits.  Fall is a busy time, especially for our college bound seniors!



Student Last Name                Assigned Counselor

A-Ek                                        Tiffani Gieck

El-K                                         Kathy Orchard

L-Ra                                        Paul Stordahl

Re-Z                                        Christina Cross


Special Needs                          Jan Lucas

Intervention/EL                         Carey Bussey



This year, our district has purchased Naviance for all schools throughout the district.  Along with that, we procured a brand new tool with Naviance called PrepMe.  PrepMe is a free PSAT/SAT/ACT test preparation tool available to ALL students.  It’s an adaptive learning platform that diagnoses each student’s individual strengths and weaknesses and creates a personalized study plan based on their needs and timelines.  It gives students immediate feedback as they progress throughout the curriculum and students have the chance to take a full-length practice test at the conclusion.


We also want to continue to encourage all students to utilize their Naviance account for academic, college and career planning needs.  In addition, keep in mind that GBHS utilizes Naviance to send out critical information throughout the year so we encourage parents and students to check their account regularly and keep email addresses up to date.


For more information or to log in to your Naviance account, visit www.granitebayhigh.org and click on the “Plan With Me” tab on the left side.



Hopefully you were able to make it to our Freshman Parent Night presentation before Back to School Night.  As noted in the presentation, we will visit the fall Health & Safety and PE 9 classes to help acquaint students with all the services available here at GBHS as well as give them a chance to meet with us and ask any general questions of concern.  We will also be taking students to the computer lab to log-on and learn to utilize their Naviance accounts.  If you have not yet created a parent Naviance account, we encourage you to do so.  Instructions can be found on GBHS’s website under the “Naviance Family Connection” link.



For those of you new to the high school experience, we thought it might be helpful for you to be informed as to the systematic way in which counselors advise for college and career planning.  In addition to meeting with students on an individual basis as needed, the counseling department meets with each student every academic year in classroom or large group settings for advising and guidance.



Counselors will deliver their planned guidance curriculum to all freshmen at two different times throughout the year. This year, we will hold a mass advising session on September 3rd during a collaboration morning.  Our “Get connected, Stay Connected” program includes topics such as study skills, graduation and college requirements, athletic eligibility, clubs, campus support, and grades.  Then in February, we will work with freshman in small groups in the computer lab utilizing our Naviance program so students know where to find academic planning, college, and career resources. They will complete the “Do What You Are” interest inventory and work on creating their 4-year academic plan. A Freshman Advising Guide will also be made available on our website and in Naviance.


Additionally, counselors meet individually each grading period with students who have multiple poor grades.



Continuing our “Get Connected, Stay Connected” program, our mass Sophomore Advising session will be held on October 22nd during a collaboration morning.  This session will focus on college admission requirements in terms of grades and testing and understanding the different hierarchy of colleges and requirements in addition to review of their individual transcripts and a discussion of four-year plans. Then in early December, we will work with sophomores in small groups in the computer labs to log-on to their Naviance accounts and learn how to utilize the college and career research tools.  Students will complete the career interest inventory and research potential careers and college majors as well as revisit their 4-year academic plan.  A Sophomore Advising Guide will also be made available on our website and in Naviance.



The mass Junior Advising session will be held on October 1st during a collaboration morning at which time we will review student transcripts, graduation and college requirements, SAT/ACT information, and timelines with students. After meeting with your student, counselors send home a copy of their transcript and a list of courses that need to be completed for graduation.  Additionally, we will connect with juniors again in mid-November and utilize Naviance for their college or post-secondary research and planning.  We will review students’ past personality and career interest inventory results as it relates to their future planning.  Juniors will come away with the tools to research and set goals for their post-high school plans.  Additionally, a detailed Junior Advising guide, containing information and resources pertaining to high school graduation and college preparation, will be posted to our website and to Naviance.



Seniors will soon be facing crucial deadlines for college and other career options.  We look forward to helping them at this very exciting stage of their academic life!


The mass Senior Advising session will be held September 17th during a collaboration morning.  Topics will include graduation status, college application process, handling letters of recommendations and transcript needs, and critical deadlines. Students will receive a packet of valuable information including their transcript and A-G status. After this advising session, counselors send home a graduation status letter that includes a list of courses that need to be completed for graduation.  We will follow up with seniors the following week, in small groups, and work with them in Naviance to complete their college/post-secondary searches, cover financial aid and scholarship information, requesting letter of recommendation online, and more.  A detailed Senior Advising Guide, containing information and resources pertaining to the high school graduation and college preparation, will also be posted to the GBHS counseling website and to Naviance.


Other program components to keep you and students informed include:  Naviance, College and Career Fairs, College Nights, College and Career Newsletter inserts, College Handbook, and the Program Planning Guide.


Required Testing for College Bound Seniors

 A reminder that in order to be eligible for 4-year colleges, all students must take the SAT and/or ACT exams.  Students who want to repeat the test in an effort to raise their scores can do so in the early fall of their senior year.  All testing must be done no later than December of the senior year for most colleges while some colleges require testing to be done as early as October.  Check with specific campuses for more information or contact the Career Center if you have questions about this.


Junior High School College Prep Courses Placed on High School Transcript 

GBHS will place the following college preparatory classes (Spanish 1, Algebra 1, and Geometry) taken during junior high school on the high school transcript under the following circumstances:


1. Successfully passing the next sequential course in high school

Student must enroll in the next sequential college preparatory class at GBHS and pass the whole course with a C- grade or better.  If the student repeats the same level as was taken in junior high then this offer does not apply.


2. Upon request only

If the above condition is met, the student/parent may request to have the corresponding junior high school course placed on the high school transcript.  Please note:  this will not happen unless requested as there are some that would elect to not have these courses placed on the high school transcript.  A form is available in the Registrar’s office for this purpose.


When these courses are placed on the high school transcript, they will show as junior high school courses in the year in which they were taken and will indicate credit earned and a GPA will be noted for that grading period.  Although the transcript shows credit earned and a GPA for the grading periods in which the junior high grades were taken, these grades and credits will not count towards the high school credits needed for graduation, nor count in the high school GPA.


Additional Resources:


GBHS Counseling Department Website


We have been working hard to provide relevant information in a timely and readily accessible format. Hopefully you will find it helpful in providing current school news, academic resources, social/emotional resources, test-taking strategies, stress management help, college and career searches, college handbook, study skills help, etc.


College and Career Handbook Online

 http://www.rjuhsd.k12.ca.us/domain/46  Be sure to check out this wonderful resource for up-to-date information on SAT/ACT testing, college application procedures, college visitation guidelines, career search info., NCAA info., alternate routes to your dream college, financial aid and scholarship info. and much, much more!


It’s Time To Start and/or Continue Your College/Career Search on Naviance.


Please encourage your child to log-in to their Naviance account and begin their college search. Click on the “colleges” tab at the top and then “SuperMatch.”  You will find it is a great place to start the college/career planning journey with guidelines for exploring colleges/careers, paying for college, how to navigate the admissions process, how to pick the college right for you, etc. 


Great resources for school success:

Guidance Counselors

If your student needs help with homework, study habits, stress management, time management, etc. or seems to be struggling in school (defined as getting D’s and F’s) and you can’t figure out why, please contact your student’s counselor for further help. 


GBHS Homework Center:  The Learning Center (Library) is now available for students who need a place to complete their homework, or hold study groups.  Peer tutors will also be available to help if needed.  It will be held in the GBHS library, on Monday – Thursday, from 2:45 – 3:45 pm.  It will be available on a drop-in basis and is a safe and supportive environment to help students on their road to success!  Please note that the third Tuesday of the month will be an exception due to Faculty meetings.


Homelink:  Remember you can access your student’s classroom assignments, current grades, attendance status, transcripts etc. from home on your own internet-connected computer.  To create a student or parent account, please visit this address http://homelink.rjuhsd.us/ .


Study skills: www.studygs.net, http://lsc.sas.cornell.edu/ 


Stress Management: www.stressmanagementtips.com


College Searches:  www.princetonreview.com,  www.californiacolleges.edu, www.collegeprowler.com


Career Searches:  www.cacareerzone.com   , http://www.osha.gov/, www.cacareercafe.com       


SAT and ACT Practice Tests:  www.collegeboard.org, or www.actstudent.org


Volunteer Work :  www.roseville.ca.us/hr/volunteer_center/default.asp


Occupational Handbook:  http://online.onetcenter.org/find/ -O-net



PSAT is the National Qualifying Test for National Merit Scholarships for 11th graders.  It is recommended that all 4 yr. bound Juniors take this test.  The test will be at GBHS on Wednesday, Oct. 15th (a non-school day).  The cost is $25 and signups are continuing through Oct. 3rd through Student Services or through GBHS’s website www.granitebayhigh.org.  Click on “Resources” and then click on “On-line Student Store.”


Career Center:  Our Career Center continues to be an excellent resource for testing and college application information as well as vocational, military, trade schools, and scholarships and financial aide.  Contact Cindi Underwood, our Career Center Tech., in the Career Center for further information. 



Counselor request forms are available at the front desk for students to complete if they want to meet with their counselor.  Turn-around time is typically within 48 hours.  Remind your students that they can see their counselor during both lunchtimes and before and after school (when we do not have a scheduled meeting) on a drop-in basis without an appointment!  If students have an emergency, they should not wait, but should go directly to the front desk in the administration building where support will be provided.