Procedure To See Your Counselor

Come in and see us:

  • Counselors are available to see students on a drop-in basis before school, during lunch, and after school.
  • To make an appointment for another time, students should come before school, during lunch, or after school and fill out a green appointment request form. Leave this form with Ms. Smolen the Counseling Department secretary. As soon as possible, the counselor will send a pass to the student's class.

Parents: If you would like to make an appointment to see your child's counselor please call Ms. Smolen at 301-840-4650. Counselors are more likely to be able to meet with you if you call ahead. Thank you.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. How do students schedule a meeting with their counselor?
  a. Counselors are available to see students on a drop-in basis before school, during lunch, and after school.
b. To make an appointment for another time, students should come before school, during lunch, or after school and fill out a yellow appointment request form. Leave this form with Ms. Smolen the Counseling Department secretary. As soon as possible, the counselor will send a pass to the student's class.
Parents: If you would like to make an appointment to see your child's counselor please call 301-840-4650. Counselors are more likely to be able to meet with you if you call ahead. Thank you.
 
2. How does a student make a schedule change?
  Each Spring students have the opportunity to select their classes. There will be no schedule changes made after school begins except for those instances when a student:
a. failed a prerequisite course and cannot continue in that course;
b. attended summer school and can advance in sequence;
c. registered for the wrong level, i.e. should be in French III and is incorrectly scheduled in French I;
d. did not register for normal class progression.
Students may contact their counselor to discuss schedule change requests.
 
3. What can a student do if he or she is not doing well in a class?
  a. Teachers are available during lunch and after school to help students. It is suggested that students let teachers know they would like to meet with them and schedule an agreed upon time.
b. Late buses are available several days each week.
c. Tutors are available through the National Honor Society.
 
4. How can parents monitor a student's progress?
 

a. Interim reports are mailed home mid-way through each marking period. If a student receives an interim, parents should contact the teacher of that class.
b. Weekly progress reports are available in the counseling department. Students may pick up these reports, ask teachers to mark their progress, and take the reports home to parents.
c. Parents are issued Ed-Line access to monitor their child's grades.

 
5. How do students register for summer school?
  Summer school schedules are available in the counseling department, usually in May. Registration occurs through June, and summer school begins in July. Students may take two semesters of summer school earning a maximum of one credit. Courses failed during the year will need to be repeated in summer school. Students should consult with their counselor about course selection.
 
6. What are things students should be doing each year to be ready for graduation?
  In the fall of 9th grade students receive the booklet "Getting Started." This handbook provides information about time management and study skills improvement, decision making, career information, college planning and college admissions tests. It includes a year-by-year countdown to graduation. In the spring of 11th grade students receive the booklet "Getting Ready." This handbook provides information about post high school options, career planning, college planning, scholarships and financial aid, and an updated countdown to graduation for juniors and seniors. Both booklets are available on the MCPS Web. See Getting Ready and Getting Started.
 
7. What are the requirements for eligibility for sports and extra-curricular activities?
  Students must maintain a 2.0 marking period average with not more than one failing grade in the preceding marking period in order to participate in extracurricular activities during the next marking period. The marking period average is not the same as GPA. (MCPS Regulation IQD-RA: Academic Eligibility for High School Students Who Participate in Extracurricular Activities).
 
8. Can a student receive high school credit for courses taken in middle school?
  The awarding of high school credit while in middle school began with students entering Grade 9 in September 1997. Credit will be awarded after a middle school student has passed the final examination, and passed the course. Questions should be directed to a student's counselor.
 
9. What is a Certificate of Merit?
  In addition to the Maryland high school diploma, students who meet the following requirements may be awarded the Maryland high school Certificate of Merit: A) At least 12 credits must be earned in advanced courses identified by MCPS as applicable to the Certificate of Merit. B) Students must obtain at least a 3.0 unweighted cumulative grade point average. All courses counted toward the Certificate of Merit must be taken for a letter grade.
 
10. What is the Student Service Learning Requirement?
  Maryland State Department of Education graduation requirements contain a student service learning (SSL) component. MCPS students are required to complete a minimum of 60 SSL hours in the class of 2009 and 2010. MCPS students in the class of 2011 and above are required to complete a minimum of 75 SSL hours. Middle school students complete 30 SSL hours through the infusion of service learning experiences in the middle school curriculum. The remaining 30 hours may be earned in middle or high school. All documented SSL hours from any school system will be accepted toward the MCPS graduation requirement. Students who earn 260 or more SSL hours are eligible to receive a certificate of Meritorious Service. Questions should be directed to the SSL coordinator, Ms. Letourneau, at 301-840-4686.
 
11. What does it mean to take a course on a Credit/No-credit basis?
  "CR" and "NC" are used for evaluation in courses for which students have the written permission of their parents to be evaluated on a credit-no credit basis instead of by the standard letter grades. Credit and no credit may be used only in courses not specifically required for graduation by the Maryland State Department of Education or MCPS. Credit and no credit cannot be applied to a Certificate of Merit. A student may have no more than one credit-no credit option per semester in Grade 9 and in Grade 10, two per semester in Grade 11 and Grade 12.
 
12. How is grade point average computed?
  All semester grades (A-E) appear on the report card and on the permanent record card and are used in determining grade point average (GPA) and weighted grade point average (WGPA) in accordance with the procedures set forth in MCPS Regulation IKC-RA: Grade Point Averages and Weighted Grade Point Averages. An additional quality point will be added to grades of "A", "B", and "C" in all honors courses in advanced placement and advanced level courses only to determine WGPA. MCPS does not rank students.
 
13. Is it possible to withdraw from a course?
  If the student withdraws after 25 school days of the course, the date of the withdrawal and the achievement attained to the time of withdrawal will be entered on the report card and permanent record. Withdrawal grades are not used in computing GPA or WGPA. However, they are included to determine student academic eligibility for participation in extracurricular activities.
 
14. How does a student obtain Age of Majority?
  Age of Majority occurs whenever a student has attained 18 years of age or is married; the permission or consent required of and the rights accorded to the parents of the student shall thereafter be required of and accorded to the student." (MCPS Policy IKA-RA)
 
15. How many Advanced Placement classes should a student take?
  Students should consider the increased time needed to successfully handle the rigor of AP courses, and not select more AP courses than they can realistically handle. AP courses are college level courses. Students may enroll in any AP course for which they are qualified, but should exercise judgment.
 
16. How can a student obtain a work permit?
  Work permits may be obtained from Ms. Moloney-Johnston in the Career Center. A work permit is needed for each job held by a student until they reach the age of 18.
 
17. If a student fails courses for the year, is he or she retained?
  Students are promoted to the next grade based on the total number of credits earned.
- To be promoted to 10th grade, students must have 5 credits including 1 English and 1 Math credit.
- To be promoted to 11th grade, students must have 10 credits including 2 English and 2 Math credits.
- To be promoted to 12th grade, students must have 15 credits including 3 English and 3 Math credits.
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