• 4/22/2020

    BWHS Counseling & Student Services Department

    Frequently Asked Questions Page

     

    The BWHS Counseling & Student Services Department created this FAQ page to answer your questions regarding Academic Advising, Post-Secondary Planning, and Emotional Well-Being during the COVID-19 school closure.

    You can ask questions here.

    Please note:

    • The information listed below is our best interpretation of what has been released to the LCPS community.
    • Any information released by the Loudoun County Public Schools division supersedes the information listed below.
    • Please visit the LCPS Public Information Office COVID-19 page for the most comprehensive information available from LCPS: https://www.lcps.org/COVID19

    ____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

                                                                                                                                            COMMUNICATION

    How does the BWHS Counseling & Student Services Department communicate information?

    • Announcements/updates/reminders are made throughout the week using a) Blackboard Mass Notification emails and b) Counseling Google Classroom
    • Announcements are also posted on social media (Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter)
    • The department’s webpages are updated with new information as needed
    • All information culminates in a Friday newsletter automatically emailed to parents and students (no registration needed).

      ___________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

    ACADEMIC ADVISING

     

    Question:  What about classes with SOL’s?

    Answer:

    Normally, you earn a “Verified Credit” when you pass a class and also pass the corresponding SOL (if that course has an SOL).

    This year, seniors who pass a course with an SOL this year will have the verified credit for that course waived.

    This year, seniors who passed a course with an SOL in the past (but not the SOL test) will have the verified credit for that course waived.

    This year, non-seniors who are currently enrolled in and have passed a course with an SOL will earn a "locally awarded" verified credit, and will not have to make-up the SOL.

     

    __________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

    Question:  Will marking period four grades count?

    Question: How will final grades be calculated?

    Question: How will GPA be calculated?

     

    Answer: Please visit the LCPS grading page here.

    ___________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

     
     

    Question: Are virtual Loudoun classes still being offered this summer?

    Answer: Yes.  There have been no changes to Virtual Loudoun classes and associated deadlines.  Information can be found here: https://www.lcps.org/domain/21526


    Question: When will marking period three end?

    Answer: Students will have until April 24 to complete marking period three work.


    Question: What is going on with drivers-ed?

    Answer: There is no behind-the-wheel driver’s education at this time.  We are not issuing DEC-1 cards at this time.


    Question: What about Advanced Placement exams?

    Answer: AP exams will be taken online, at home.  More information, including test dates and structure, can be found here: https://www.lcps.org/Page/220791.  The College board indicated they would release an “At-Home Testing Guide” for students by late-April.  While the CollegeBoard will provide full-refunds for students who do not wish to test, information on the refund process is not yet available.


    Question: Will there be a time where I can do a schedule change for next year?

    Answer: The time is now!  Have a parent email your counselor with the request.  The deadline is June 1, 2020.


    Question: Is there a daily recommended schedule/structure for online learning?

    Answer: This is addressed in the LCPS Continuity of Education Plan, found here: https://www.lcps.org/Page/228181.  Some highlights: Establish a daily routine, identify a learning space in your home, check google classroom and LCPS email daily.  High school students should expect up-to 30-minutes of daily work per class, for a cumulative 3-4 hours of school-work per day.  AP and DE work may be aligned to course expectations.


    Question: How can I know if my child is completing his work?

    Answer: Please do not hesitate to reach out to your child’s teacher, via email, with any questions about work and progress.


    Question: Is there an option for my child to repeat their current grade next year?

    Answer: Concerns about repeating classes can be directed to your child’s counselor via email.


     

     

    POST-SECONDARY PLANNING

     

    Question: Where can I find a comprehensive list of scholarships available.

    Answer: Local scholarship awards are listed on Naviance: https://sites.google.com/lcps.org/lcpsnaviancestudentresources/home. National scholarships can be found on many websites.  We recommend starting with the College Board and Fast Web websites.


    Question: How can we get letters of recommendation for college?

    Answer: Seniors who still need a letter should contact the person they need a letter from via email.  Let them know who they should email their letter to.  Our department will soon release information on our distance letters-of-recommendation process for current juniors.


    Question: College planning - what should my Freshman be doing?

    Answer: Our two favorite resources for post-secondary planning are Naviance: https://sites.google.com/lcps.org/lcpsnaviancestudentresources/home; and the College Board’s BigFuture website: https://bigfuture.collegeboard.org/.  In short, freshmen should really focus on being the best high school students they can be and preparing as best they can for their sophomore year.  If they have some extra time 😊 have them take a virtual tour of a few colleges.  Many institutions have greatly enhanced this capability.


    Question: How will you know where to send final transcripts for seniors?

    Answer: We will still conduct our end-of-the-year senor survey to gather this information, most likely in May. The process will be different than year’s past.  Stay tuned.


    Question: Are there websites that we can access that can get my child thinking about his college major?

    Answer: Our two favorite resources are Naviance: https://sites.google.com/lcps.org/lcpsnaviancestudentresources/home; and the College Board’s BigFuture website: https://bigfuture.collegeboard.org/.


    Question:  How are kids going to cope with college admissions preparation amidst the indefinite lockdown due to COVID-19?

    Answer:  There are a lot of unknowns right now.  We are very confident that colleges and universities will be creative and flexible moving forward.  They understand that the COVID-19 pandemic is affecting all students across the nation and world right now.  They are seeking out answers and new ways of doing things as we are.  The admissions process may look different next year and beyond, and we will do our very best to communicate all news and updates.  This is a good resource for staying up-to-date: https://www.nacacnet.org/college-admission-status-coronavirus


    Question: How will SATs and ACT's be handled?

    Answer: SAT’s have been canceled through June. More information can be found here.

    The ACT just released alternate testing plans for the summer and "at-home" testing in the fall.  More information here.

    Many experts believe that many universities will become “test-optional,” at least for the graduating class of 2021, and some universities have already announced this.  We will share out information as it becomes available.


    Question: What is Briar Woods doing to advise students on professional career paths?

    Answer: As mandated by the Virginia Department of Education, all sophomores are to update their Academic Career Plan.  We originally planned to facilitate this through classroom visits this month.  We are working on a plan to facilitate this now.  Stay tuned.


    Question: How can we help the juniors understand what is going on? They are prepping for college at a time when everything is uncertain.

    Answer:  We understand.  Like high schools, colleges are just trying to get through this school year, let alone plan for next year’s admissions process.  As noted above, colleges may have to adapt to different scenarios and ways of doing business.  We are committed to sharing any and all information as it becomes available.

    Before COVID, this department planned for junior college-presentations sometime in late-April.  We are still planning on it.  Of course, the delivery will be quite different.

    Finally, remember that only a few things have changed for juniors so far – namely, the SAT/ACT and a lot of summer events being canceled.

    Ideally, nothing will change next year.  We will start school, you apply to colleges in the fall, and scholarships in the winter/spring.  We start the year with several senior activities just like we always do – college night, college classroom presentations, senior meetings with counselors, etc.  Plan B is we do all those things, just with a different delivery method

     


     

     

    EMOTIONAL WELL-BEING

     

    Question: Is there an online resource for teens and parents regarding expected emotional changes and common problems that teens face.

    Answer: LCPS put together this resource: https://www.lcps.org/domain/31226


     

     

    MISCELLANEOUS QUESTIONS

     

    Question: My child is a current 8th-grade student at Eagle Ridge Middle School.  Is there anything we should know regarding incoming freshman that has not already been sent to us by ERMS?

    Answer: At this time the only activity we “missed” due to COVID-19 is the scheduled Activities EXPO where 8th-grade students visit Briar Woods to learn about our clubs and activities.  We will certainly work to replace that experience in the future.  Any other future plans we have to cancel or modify will be communicated to our community.


    Question: What is happening with graduation?

    Answer:  While the end of this school year will certainly look different, we will still honor the class of 2020.  Our department is open to any suggestions and ideas.


    Question:  How will we get our diplomas?

    Answer:  We are not sure at this time, but you will get them!