High School Counselor Week

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


December 3, 2020

Big Picture

Analysis: What Do Parents Think About K-12 Education During & After COVID-19? Schools Are in Crisis, But Better Days Are Ahead, Survey Finds
The 74 – November 30, 2020
Dr. Frank Luntz, FIL founder and the survey director, summarizes the main conclusion: ‘Never in my lifetime have so many parents been so eager for so much educational change.’

Coronavirus cases on college campuses spike, linked to parties
CNBC – November 20, 2020
Even though the vast majority of college students want to be on campus, failing to follow social distancing guidelines is causing a troubling rise in cases of coronavirus.

Ranking College Dashboards
Inside Higher Ed – December 1, 2020
The project We Rate COVID Dashboards has been evaluating college and university attempts at transparency. Eight months into the pandemic, how are institutions doing?

Columns and Blogs

The Early Returns Suggest Students are Courting Colleges
Post – Dedember 2, 2020
Counselors’ Corner with Patrick O’Connor Ph.D.

Understanding how to pay for college…
Tribune News Service – December 2, 2020
College Admissions Strategies with Lee Bierer 

15 college interview opportunities you will want to investigate
Post – November 20, 2020
College Explorations with Nancy Griesemer 


This Texas higher education campaign is working to stop declining enrollment in its tracks
The Dallas Morning News – December 1, 2020
A new coalition of more than 700 counselors and college access professionals aims to provide more support for school counselors in Texas who need to reach prospective college students.

Tips for Surviving COVID-19 Online Education By Implementing Trauma Informed Communities
For High School Counselors (Blog) – November 27, 2020
As we speak, many counselors are reporting high rates of student failure, student disengagement from online classes, irate parents who are dissatisfied with COVID education, and students experiencing some type of mental health crisis. The good news is that there are some very simple things we, as educators, can do to make a difference

Stress And Depression Rising Again Among Students As School Closures Drag On
St. Louis Public Radio (MO) – December 1, 2020
Even the social media generation is a little sick of screens. And school counselors say it’s starting to show, as more teens and children grapple with prolonged bouts of increased stress, anxiety and depression.

WSCUHSD social-emotional support network works to address mental health struggles
Sonoma West News (CA) – December 2, 2020
Each high school’s website contains a list of supports, like guidance counselors, academic support electives for work completion and organization, the college and career center, outreach therapy and frequent phone check-ins where supervisors call students to help them maintain a consistent routine, especially if they struggle with attendance or troubleshooting technology.


Students urged to complete FAFSA before approaching deadline
KBTX-TV (TX)- December 1, 2020
Steven Peterson,  Director of Financial Aid and Scholarships for Blinn College, Brenham joined us Tuesday to explain how FAFSA can help out a family, especially this year when so many people are impacted by the pandemic.(Closed Captioning available)

Admissions Process & Strategy

Inside American Express’s virtual mentorship program that’s helping low-income teens get into and pay for college
Business Insider – November 29, 2020
American Express and a nonprofit called Strive for College have helped more than 4,000 students navigate the complicated college admissions and financial aid process through their program UStrive.

3 Viable University Alternatives: Because It’s Not Right For Everyone
Forbes – November 30, 2020
At the secondary school I attended, university was the next step. It made complete sense for the school, which was assessed on the percentage of its students that went into higher education. The conveyor belt of education was established, and we moved along it willingly.

Facing Continued COVID-19 Challenges, Colleges Reevaluate Admissions Process
Oklahoma’s News on 6 – November 29, 2020
The pandemic has forced universities around the country to re-evaluate their admissions process. Several ACT and SAT tests have been canceled this year, and local schools are changing test requirements as a result.

Financial Aid/Scholarships

How To Correct Or Change Your FAFSA
Arizona Daily Sun – November 27, 2020
With so many people completing the FAFSA—many of them teenagers applying on their own—mistakes happen. Whether you made an error or your information changed, it’s important to update the FAFSA as soon as you learn of a mistake. Below, learn about the FAFSA corrections process and update deadlines.

Your Green 2020: How Can I Afford College?
Gwinnett Citizen (GA) – November 30, 2020
High school seniors, and their parents, are making decisions now about which colleges they will apply to attend. Before that decision is made, you need to consider how you will pay for those college expenses.

Fewer High School Seniors Are Submitting The FAFSA. Here’s Why That’s A Problem
Forbes – November 30, 2020
The result? Potentially major consequences for student enrollment, financial aid availability and even whether future high school graduates go directly to college if they don’t see that behavior modeled by today’s senior class


7 Ways to Reduce Anxiety on SAT, ACT Test Day
U.S. News & World Report – November 30, 2020
Simple actions like deep breathing and connecting with an encouraging friend can lessen stress.

Testing Frustrations Continue
Inside Higher Ed – November 30, 2020
SAT and ACT cancellations may get worse in coming weeks.

COVID and college admissions: Preparing for standardized tests during the pandemic
WMBF News (SC) – December 1, 2020
The next round of SAT and ACT testing is just days away, and students are preparing differently this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Perhaps the biggest change is how they’re meeting.

Education scholars criticize College Board for revising history
The College Fix – December 1, 2020
The quality of history education has gone down because of the College Board, scholars argue

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Teen Health

‘It’s a battle with yourself’: Michigan students struggle to manage mental health in troubling times
Chalkbeat – November 30, 2020
Elizabeth Okunawo finds herself descending into a spiral of self-doubt and negativity while learning at home. Classmates and teachers at school were once healthy distractions for the senior. Now that she’s learning remotely, Okunawo said she’s having a harder time escaping her thoughts.

‘Unnoticed and unreported’: Child abuse reporting down during pandemic, while internet crimes increase
Wisconsin State Journal – November 29, 2020
In some municipalities reports of child abuse have gone down, but detectives say it’s likely not because there’s less crime but because some cases are not being reported. Meanwhile, internet crimes against children, such as child pornography and child exploitation, have increased in some areas as more children spend more time online during the pandemic.

Warning Signs: Depression and Anxiety During the Holidays
Psychology Today – November 30, 2020
Teens and kids have an increase in mental health struggles as COVID-19 rises.


Pandemic Shows Students with Disabilities Need More Options
Mackinac Center for Public Policy – November 30, 2020
The end of November marks the 45th anniversary of watershed federal legislation now known as the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act. The law enshrined the idea that every child with disabilities is entitled to a meaningful education that is inclusive as possible.

Students with intellectual disabilities pursuing degrees to get support
New Hampshire Union Leader – December 1, 2020
The Institute on Disability at the University of New Hampshire is tackling the problem of access to post-secondary education for young adults with intellectual disabilities and has been awarded a $2.5 million grant.

Coronavirus-Related Resources

*NEW* Upcoming Virtual Events for Students and Parents
TeenLife Blog

COVID-19 School Response Dashboard
Maps schools’ responses to the pandemic across the United States (data submission voluntary)

Live Updates: Latest News on Coronavirus and Higher Education
Inside Higher Ed

Live Coronavirus Updates: Here’s the Latest
The Chronicle of Higher Education

COVID-29 Data Dashboard
C2i (College Crisis Initiative)

School Counseling During COVID-19
American School Counselor Association

College Board Coronavirus Updates
College Board

AP Online Classes and Review Sessions
College Board on YouTube

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

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

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