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High School Orientation Resources

Essential Categories/Topics

Tour of school
Teambuilding
How HS is different
Policies/Rules/Procedures/ Protocol/School Handbook review
Attendance
Academics
School Culture
Procedures/protocol
Paperwork
Registration
Parent Session
Counseling Services
What's Next Illinois
Extracurricular activities
Group Meeting with Administrators
Students and Parents
High School Vocabulary
Programs
Bell schedule
School Calendar
Expectations
College/Career
Role of Counselor
Housekeeping: Fees, ID's, Lockers, School calendar, lunch applications, medical forms
EPAS testing (Explore/Plan/ACT)
Academic support: tutoring, night school, credit evaluation/grad status
Social/Emotional support: anger management, conflict resolution, trauma, etc.
Registration
Discipline
Staff introductions
Grad Requirements
Attendance
ASCA domains + housekeeping
Meeting key stakeholders
Intro to critical resources

Differences between 9th grade and 10th-12th grade orientation

9th 10th-12th
Transition into high school
Differences btw E.S. and H.S.
More extensive / greater focus
Tour of school
More time
Study skills
Formal meeting reviewing rules and regulations
Bell schedule /Mock sample schedule
Organization skills
Upperclassmen advice
How to succeed
Using your agenda
GPA/Credits/Transcript overview
Fees, ID's schedules
Refresher of rules and regulations
Overview/recap + what's new this year
On track/off track information
Grade level specific meetings
College info
Career exploration
Financial planning
Verify SSN
Stress the need to be role models / mentors
Testing
Personal Essay

How do you get them there?

Feed them
Tshirts
All call system
Blast email/phone
Letters sent home/mailings/flyers
Neighborhood walk
Home visits
Visit feeder schools to announce important dates
Weekend event
Giving students their schedules
Post on website
Tell them it's mandatory
Incentives: gift cards, discounted fees, uniform free days, etc...
Fun
Music
Raffles/prizes

What do you do for those who are absent?

Hold a makeup session
Pull them out the first day of school to make sure they all get the same message
Individual/small group sessions for absentees
Mail out orientation information
Have peer mentors call those who are absent

How do you ensure that students are connected with their counselor / guidance sessions

Introduce yourselves
Role of the School Counselor session
Counselor t-shirts
Hand out postcards, flyers, pens identifying counselors
Photos of counselors with assigned divisions
Create a counselor page on school's website
Counselor Schedules / Services available / office hours
Teambuilding
Grad requirements
Service Learning
Schedules
Credit recovery / tutoring
4 year plans
What's Next Illinois

Ideas for Orientation Activities

Scavenger Hunt
High School Bingo
Ice Cream Social
A day in the life
Mock Classroom
Student Panel
Coming to a theatre near you
Family Fest picnic
College admissions reps onsite for seniors
Use peer mentors
Jeopardy game to review info + prizes!!

More Information

Karpouzian, Barbara
Director of Counseling
Novak, Brad
Lead High School Counseling Specialist
773.553.3585