High School Counselor Week

Weekly stories, facts, trends, and other information from around the country


August 20, 2020

Big Picture

After in-person stint, some universities go online – again.
The Christian Science Monitor – August 18, 2020
A week after welcoming undergraduates back to campus, The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill joined other universities around the country that are scrambling to handle virus clusters traced to students. Their solution? Switch back to remote learning.

Higher Education’s Very Bad Week: North Carolina Pivots, Notre Dame Pauses, and Protests Mount
Forbes – August 19, 2020
No one expected institutions would be able to reopen and not experience some incidence of new cases…but the fact that the outbreaks have happened at the level and speed of the past week and that they were at institutions that had committed substantial resources and expertise to contain the virus…

Need A Laptop? Colleges Boost Loaner Programs Amid Pandemic
NPR – August 15, 2020
We’ve long known there’s a digital divide in America. The pandemic, which has forced the country to jump headfirst into an immersive, all-encompassing digital existence — is only exacerbating it.

Tracking how the coronavirus is impacting school districts
EducationDive – August 19, 2020
From the shift to distance learning to the impact on school budgets, we’re collecting news, analysis and expert advice on how K-12 is responding to the pandemic.

Why the breakdown of stimulus talks is doubly painful for schools: no money and added uncertainty
Chalkbeat – August 17, 2020
With talks over a new coronavirus relief package now stalled, Congress has not only failed to provide more money to schools, but also injected additional uncertainty into an already tumultuous school year. The consequences will be far-reaching, for America’s schools and the over 50 million students they serve.

Columns and Blogs

Gearing Up for an Uncertain Fall
Post – August 16, 2020
Counselors’ Corner with Patrick O’Connor Ph.D.

The 3 types of essays: The Good, the Bad and the Risky
Tribune News Service – August 19, 2020
College Admissions Strategies with Lee Bierer 

Should you write about COVID-19 for your college essay?
Post – August 2020
The College Solution Blog with Lynn O’Shaughnessy


Q&A: Why Supporting K-12 School Counselors Is as Vital as Ever
UVA Today – August 19, 2020
Many people were happy back in March when the Virginia General Assembly approved a budget that included more funding for K-12 school counselors, who historically have played an important, yet underappreciated, role in students’ lives. Then the pandemic hit.

School counselors working to offer virtual mental health options
Idaho 6 News – August 18, 2020
The first day of school for students in the Twin Falls School District is Wednesday, and everyone is bustling to get ready–especially the district’s counselors.

Google Meet Adds ‘Zoom-Bombing’ Protection for Educators
Entrepreneur – July 14, 2020
Anonymous users will be blocked from Google Meet video conferences held by schools, colleges, and universities in a bid to stop pranksters disrupting lessons.

SchooLinks Announces Partnership with National Student Clearinghouse to Further Enhance Outcome Tracking Capabilities
Tyler Telegraph (TX) – August 18, 2020
This partnership furthers our mission to democratize data by enabling districts to use outcome data to drive equity initiatives and further college and career readiness best practices.’


‘I don’t know if I can do this’: Parents brace for school year juggling jobs, remote learning amid COVID-19 pandemic
USA Today – August 18, 2020
Employers and employees are grappling with how to adapt to a new reality that may require them to extend short-term fixes and create more long-term solutions, whether that’s staggering schedules, splitting jobs between two workers or offering leaves of absence.

Coronavirus College Money Dilemmas For Parents And Children
Forbes – August 16, 2020
What’s the value of a college education in the pandemic, where classes normally taught in person will instead be offered either fully or partly online? That’s the question millions of parents, grandparents and undergrads are facing for the 2020-2021 school year.

Lost in Transition: In the Midst of COVID Worries Students Still Need to Adjust
College Parent Central – August 10, 2020
Here are 10 things to touch on with your student – either before they leave for school or as you talk to them once they are there. And if your student is home this semester, some of these topics matter for them as well…


Local school counselors offer advice on college applications during the pandemic
Yahoo! News – August 18, 2020
College applications opened earlier this month and there is concern being voiced by high school seniors. 23ABC Bakersfield spoke with local college counselors about some tips and tricks for tackling those applications in a pandemic.

Admissions Process & Strategy

‘Back’ To School: College Admission Ready
Forbes – August 11, 2020
As the academic year rapidly approaches, there are steps that college-bound high school seniors can take to be prepared for admission applications—whether they will be learning remotely or in-person. Anticipate a challenging fall and consider the following…

How to Stand out on Your College Applications Without Taking the SATs
Her Campus – July 31, 2020
Due to the coronavirus pandemic, applying to colleges and universities looks a little different in 2020 than in a typical year.

COVID-19 College Marketing Draws Criticism
Inside Higher Ed – August 19, 2020
Some predominantly online institutions have ramped up marketing efforts to attract students during the pandemic. A foundation’s report tracks spending and criticizes a pattern of ‘concerning’ ads.

Unprecedented Numbers of Students Are Taking a Gap Year. What Should They Do With the Time?
EdSurge – August 17, 2020
In ordinary times, students taking a gap year often used that time to pursue opportunities for meaningful in-person experiences. Usually, that meant some combination of work and travel. But given the pandemic…

Financial Aid/Scholarships

Here’s how college students can angle for more financial aid as pandemic hits pocketbooks
CNBC – August 11, 2020
Beyond changes in actual income, a family can request more aid because of anything that’s affected your family. Higher unreimbursed medical expenses, a greater financial…

If a student must withdraw from college due to Covid-19, getting a tuition refund or reimbursement could be tricky
CNBC – August 18, 2020
Depending on when a student withdraws in a semester, the college’s refund policy may reimburse a significant amount (specifically if it’s within the first month or so of the semester, although it varies by school). However…

These Colleges Are Giving Tuition Discounts This Fall
U.S. News & World Report – August 12, 2020
Some colleges and universities are offering tuition discounts ranging from a small percentage to more than half off for the 2020 fall semester because of the coronavirus pandemic. These announcements go beyond freezing tuition or…

How to Protect Yourself from Student Loan Scams
TAPinto.net – August 18, 2020
Unfortunately, student loan scams are out there. They target people who are already struggling financially and make their situations much more difficult. This article will teach you how to avoid fraudulent student loan activity and what to do if you have already sent your information to a suspected scam.


Registered for the SAT, Unable to Take the Test
Inside Higher Ed – August 19, 2020
Of 402,000 who registered to take SATs on August 29, 178,600 are blocked from taking the test because testing centers are closed or limited in capacity.

Nearly 400 NACAC-Member Colleges and Universities Affirm Test-Optional Means Test-Optional
NACAC – August 7, 2020
Links to list of schools that have signed on to the association’s statement affirming that students will not be penalized for the absence of a standardized test score for admission in Fall 2021

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Coronavirus-Related Resources

• New • Live Updates: Latest News on Coronavirus and Higher Education
The Chronicle of Higher Education

• New • Live Coronavirus Updates: Here’s the Latest
Inside Higher Ed

• New • SAT Test Center Closings
College Board
Test center closings for the August SAT and SAT Subject Tests will be listed on this page in the weeks before the test date. This page will be updated with new information, if any, every three hours.

COVID-29 Data Dashboard
C2i (College Crisis Initiative)

ASCA Update: COVID-19
American School Counselor Association

ASCA COVID-19 Resources
American School Counselor Association

Coronavirus and College Admission

Information for Cambridge schools about Coronavirus (COVID-19)
Cambridge International

College Board Coronavirus Updates
College Board

AP Online Classes and Review Sessions
College Board on YouTube

Colleges and Universities Temporarily Waiving ACT/SAT Requirements for 2020 Admissions Only

IBO.org COVID-19 (coronavirus) updates
International Baccalaureate

Resocialization of Collegiate Sport: Developing Standards for Practice and Competition
National Collegiate Athletic Association
[Revised NCAA guidelines as of July 27, 2020]

COVID-19 Resource Center
National Association of School Psychologists

U.S. DOE: COVID-19 (“Coronavirus”) Information and Resources for Schools and School Personnel
U.S. Department of Education

The impact of COVID-19 on high school counselors and the college search process: A national survey.
RNL & High School Counselor Connect (2020)

Updated: Where to Get Free WiFi for Students During COVID-19
Campus Technology

College Virtual Tours
compiled by Rebecca Chabrow, M.A. with assistance from Collegewise

Teen Health

Open-air schools helped fight pandemics in the 1900s. Should they make a comeback?
USA Today – August 19, 2020
The Boylan Street School was specifically designed for children susceptible to tuberculosis. Today, it stands as a remnant of an experimental era that sought to curb the airborne spread of a pandemic by exposing education to the outdoors.

How myocarditis factored into Big Ten and Pac-12 postponement of fall sports
NBC Sports – August 11, 2020
At least 15 Big Ten players developed myocarditis after contracting COVID-19, a high-ranking source in the conference told CBS Sports. Warren and Big 12 commissioner Bob Bowlsby both privately expressed serious concern over the condition.

NIAAA: Fall Semester–A Time for Parents To Discuss the Risks of College Drinking
Herald-Mail Media (MD) – August 18, 2020
In light of the current coronavirus pandemic, it is particularly important this fall for parents to urge college students to take measures to protect their health.