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November Newsletter: Sophomores

Thursday, October 26, 2017

Sophomores took the PSAT on October 14 and the Practice ACT on October 18; the results will be distributed at our January 31 College Evening. A large majority of students will naturally see their scores rise in future tests as their curriculum grows to meet the concepts tested on the exam. When we review the results, we will offer students ideas on how to use them to their advantage. 

The practice tests also raise another question from families and students: standardized testing accommodations. If your child receives accommodations at Breck and is interested in pursuing accommodations for the PSAT/SAT/AP tests, now is the time to speak with your child and Claire Blanchette. Receiving accommodations at Breck does not guarantee a student’s likelihood of receiving similar accommodations on standardized testing; however, some students may not realize that accommodations they receive are put in place to “level the playing field.” It is good to have had conversations with your child to make sure they fully understand the merits of accommodations. Students apply for ACT accommodations when they register for the test. 

COLLEGE COUNSELOR ASSIGNMENTS will be distributed in December. The assignments are designed to give each counselor a representative slice of the sophomore class. We work as a team, bringing our collective knowledge, abilities and connections to the tables for the entire class. Sophomores will work with their counselor in January and February to discuss their junior and senior year curricula and begin conversations regarding testing. Other topics will include items such as co-curricular involvement, summer plans, and an introduction to our Naviance software program. 

COURSE PLANNING takes place once again January and February. Over break, I would encourage parents and students to discuss academic areas of interests, goals for the upcoming semester and beyond, and pursuits outside of the classroom. Remember, colleges determine what is important to you by assessing how you spend your time. Take an inventory of what you do, what you’d like to do, and how you may expand your scope of involvement or the depth of those to which you are currently committed. Preliminary discussions now can prove helpful as students begin to plan their upcoming schedules. 

With winter quickly approaching, it can be difficult to think about the summer. However, now is a good time to begin thinking about how you want to spend your summer. It is important to note that how a student spends his/her time reflects his/her interests. We will begin these conversations in January and February. 

MARK YOUR CALENDARS FOR JANUARY 31! We will run concurrent panels on navigating the athletic process, financing a college education and other timely discussions. More information will follow. 

Breck Parents:

Many early applications have been submitted and there are still a few more to be submitted by the Nov 1st deadline. It’s difficult to believe the amount of activity, success, and change that has taken place since August; imagine where your child will be in a few months! 

Though many of our seniors are in the midst of the application process, there is a rising reality that the college process is here for juniors and that sophomores are to soon enter the “college” discussion. Now may be a good time to check in with your child about their feelings and thoughts on the matter as these stressors can add to the rigors of the Breck work and responsibilities. 

For younger students, it’s never too early to think about how you’ll plan to use your summer! Students should begin thinking about unique opportunities or further ways to pursue a passion, interest or hobby. 

Breck's College Counseling Office

Jonathan Nicholson
Director of College Counseling

Susan Graham
Associate Director of College Counseling

Andrea O’Connell
Associate Director of College Counseling

Carrie Papillon
College Counseling Office Assistant