What is Love? by Emma K, age 6 – “Love is when you’re missing some of your teeth but you’re not afraid to smile because you know your friends will still love you even though some of you is missing.”
Kindness, grace and compassion matter. This is THE most important!
These BHS Counseling Dept Weekly Update emails are sent to all students and the 1st contact parent/guardian listed on the students’ X2 accounts.
If a student has questions/concerns/or just wants to say hello to their counselor, please encourage your student to stop by their counselor’s office when not in class.
We’re here and ready to support EVERY BHS student!
All NEW UPDATES will be highlighted in BLUE each week for easy scanning of newest info.
BHS BUILDING TOURS THIS MONDAY 10/4 – use the google form below to register
Monday's (10/4) program will include a thirty-minute presentation at 6:30pm in our Robert and Dubbs Auditorium and then tours in small groups from 7 to 8pm. This event is for high school parents and guardians only. We will be requiring masks and social distancing while indoors. Please use this Google Form link -(https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSfciP6KYcN_TIBg2jpLFscQ6jxN0OhIepKea3bg_L8T6W3mMA/viewform?mc_cid=6ea1976a6d&mc_eid=UNIQID) to let us know you plan to attend the 10/4 visit. We need this information to plan our tours and for contract tracing purposes.
As a follow up to some great questions asked by Gr 10 parents/guardians at last week’s virtual Meet and Greet with Gr 10 Counselors and Deans, here is some information to share with all… Please see attached documents for all sorts of information for students and families:
- BHS Grading Timeline for the 2021-22 School Year – Note that Quarter 1 IPRs will be posted to the portal on Friday October 15
- BHS is still determining if/ how midterm exams will be offered this year. More to come on that…
- See the attached overview of BHS Student Support Roles 2021.22 – Who to Contact, and When? This document should help provide some clarity on various members of your student’s support TEAM at BHS.
- BHS Counselor caseloads so far this school year –
o full caseload for Gr 9 counselors are over 200 students
o full caseload counselors for Gr 10-12 are averaging 180 students
o Go to the Aspen X2 portal to locate your student’s counselor or call 617-713-5016/5015
- Remember to go to the BHS homepage for all sorts of good information from the BHS Playbook to PSB Calendar and updated BHS Schedule links to Work Permit info to links to the Sagamore – Award winning school newspaper which shares BHS Need-to-Know information both virtually and in paper over the school year.
- Charlie Cards are available for BHS students. Student needs to stop by the BHS Main Office off the 115 atrium and talk to Ms Keaveney
- The BHS Junior and Senior Year Roadmaps are attached to this email also – Good info for students/families in Gr 11 and 12, plus excellent preview for Gr 9 and 10 students
- And…. Check out the BHS Guidance website – link always noted at the top of every Weekly Update for current and previous dept goings-on
The Brookline Center is offering Fall Psychotherapy Groups for Children and Adolescents. Please see the attached overview and information to consider support for your student.
Parents Supporting Parents (part of the BRYT Central organization) – Free weekly virtual parent/guardian support group offerings. Join once or become a regular. The offerings include two weekly virtual groups for ALL caregivers and one for BIPOC parents, plus a virtual group for Spanish speaking caregivers coming soon. All caregivers need a little support in their role! Flyer is attached.
HEARTplay is a heart-centered bereavement program that offers support services for children and young adults of all abilities who are coping with the life-limiting illness or death of an important person in their lives. There is NO COST for these support programs. Programs can be accessed by zoom or in person at either the Wayland or Newton offices. Please see attached flyers for information in both English and Spanish.
Mutual Aid Brookline is a group of community members who have been coordinating food deliveries and donations for groceries, medication, and other critical assistance since the start of the pandemic.
- Thanks to special, one-time funding from the Brookline Community Foundation, MAB will be giving out a limited number of money drops of $300 per household on a first-come, first-serve basis to Brookline community members who complete an online form or call our hotline at preset times. We’re not a charity, we just want to take this rare opportunity to distribute some funds to our neighbors, to use however you want! (As a note, if you need food, our delivery program already covers that separately, so get in touch! We’re hoping this money can help with other needs.) We will have several opportunities for you to get in on the drops:
● Drop 4 sign-up opens at 12pm (noon) on Tuesday, October 5th for up to 15 households
Please read the full FAQ here, so you will be ready to sign up: shorturl.at/bmxzT. A PDF version is also attached below. You will find the link to sign up for a money drop in that FAQ, but it will only work at the times above. Check the FAQ at those times to sign up! If you prefer calling, you can also call our hotline at (617) 651-1468 during drop times to ask our volunteers to sign you up. If you or a friend in Brookline want a money drop but need translation help, the sign-up form will be translated, and we will also have translators available to help on the phone at specific times (listed in the FAQs above). Please let us know if you have questions, by replying to email@example.com or calling our hotline at (617) 651-1468. Our hotline is currently voicemail-only, so leave a message and we’ll get back to you!
- FREE SERVICES
- ***NEW*** SNAP/EBT Clients Can Use Their Cards for Stop and Shop Delivery - After the long wait, EBT can now be used to set up either pickup or delivery from Stop and Shop! More info: https://www.mass.gov/snap-online-purchasing-program and
- ***NEW*** Coupons for the Brookline Farmers' Market Available - Brookline Department of Public Health - This grant will provide 500 Brookline residents and their families with coupons to purchase fresh fruit and vegetables as well as other food products during the 2021 farmers’ market season. Individuals and families of two will receive $40 in coupons while households of three or more will receive $80 in coupons. The coupons will be valid at the Farmers’ Market through Thursday, Oct. 28. Brookline individuals and families who reside in Brookline Housing Authority sites or whose household income meets federal poverty guidelines are eligible to participate in the program. Beginning in mid-August, staff from the Brookline Department of Public Health will schedule
registration dates at the Brookline Senior Center and various BHA sites to register people who qualify for the program. Information on the location and times to sign up for the program will be available at www.brooklinema.gov/health or by calling 617-730-2295 after Aug. 16. Coupon books for the Farmers’ Market will be distributed at the time of registration. More info:
- Brookline Food Pantry Has Moved - PSA: The Brookline Food Pantry has moved from their St Paul St location over to United Parish at 210 Harvard St! (The other locations at Egmont St and High St remain the same.) https://www.brooklinefoodpantry.org/
Hungry? Please check out-
- Brookline Thrives, a free weekend food program for students, starts Friday, September 17. Thrives is available to any family who may benefit from additional food options over the weekend. There are no financial qualifications. Register your student to receive Thrives bags at school on Fridays or pick up bags in person on Fridays from 5-6pm at 226 High Street, Community Room or 55R Egmont Street, Community Room. Go to www.brooklinefoodpantry.org/brookline-thrives.html for details, register, or get involved.
- USDA announces free lunches for any Brookline student for this school year 2021-22, regardless of meal eligibility – go to
Ready for some help in your class work? The midpoint of Quarter 1 is coming up on 10/14 and IPRs will be posted on 10/15. BHS Help Centers for Math and World Lang – French 2021-22 School Year are attached to this email.
CAREER EXPLORATION OPPORTUNITIES
MassBay Community College STEM Stories Virtual Program is happening again this Fall 2021
This year marks the second year of MassBay's Virtual STEM Stories Program! Participants meet STEM faculty, staff, students, graduates and industry professionals to learn about innovative STEM programs at MassBay, resources and supports for MassBay STEM students and are introduced to some exciting career opportunities in the STEM fields.
High school students, teachers and administrators are invited to attend one of these virtual STEM Division information Sessions that will be held monthly throughout the Fall semester on Zoom. Our first program will launch during STEM week on October 21st. Go to these links to register:
- MassBay STEM Stories: Start Here. Go Anywhere. Session 1
Thursday, October 21st | 1:00 PM EST - https://survey.alchemer.com/s3/6484329/Fall-2021-MassBay-STEM-Stories-Start-Here-Go-Anywhere-Session-1
- MassBay STEM Stories: Start Here. Go Anywhere. Session 2
Tuesday, November 17th | 12:00 PM - https://survey.alchemer.com/s3/6484358/Fall-2021-MassBay-STEM-Stories-Start-Here-Go-Anywhere-Session-2
- MassBay STEM Stories: Start Here. Go Anywhere. Session 3
Wednesday, December 15th | 11:00 AM - https://survey.alchemer.com/s3/6484372/Fall-2021-MassBay-STEM-Stories-Start-Here-Go-Anywhere-Se
BHS Career Coffee Talks are back!
Coming up this Tues 10/5 X block in Room 279 – College/ Career Center! In person Coffee Talk #1 - Are you interested in exploring ALL your options after high school? Not sure what it means to join a union? Do you want to start making money right after you graduate? Come to the College and Career Center rm 279, Tuesday 10/5 during X block, to hear from Nick Pavone from the Laborers Union AND Frank Amato from the Plumbers Union to learn more!
Questions? Email Ms. Kennedy at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The ACE Mentor Program of Greater Boston is back (different from the BHS ACE program)! ACE Mentor Program of Greater Boston, an affiliate of ACE Mentor Program of America, introduces high school students to careers in architecture, engineering, and construction management. Learn more at the of the information sessions linked here: https://www.acegreaterboston.org/about-us/
Questions? Reach out to BHS Career Counselor Ms. Kennedy at email@example.com
BHS Government positions are now open! Detailed information can be found on our website at https://bit.ly/BHSgov
● There are 2 open spots on BHS Judiciary for grades 9-12. *Meets during all-campus X block, applications due 10/8
● There are 8 open spots on BHS Student Council for grades 9-12. *Meets during Faculty Collab time Week B, must present candidacy at Student Council meeting on 10/12 in room 403 at 8:30 am
● Email Jen_Martin@psbma.org with any questions about the process!
Need Student Tech support? Or Parent Portal access support?
Please go to the BHS website homepage (http://bhs.brookline.k12.ma.us/) and click the Student Technology and/or Aspen Parent Portal links
PSB can offer financial assistance for school activities to qualified families -
● Go to this PSB link - https://www.brookline.k12.ma.us/Page/2210
● The form can be filled out on your computer and, with the supporting documents, emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org. We accept photos and scans of all the documents. ● You can contact your school's secretary if you need help emailing the documents. ● This application procedure covers most school fees in the full school year: fees for Athletics, Instrumental Music, and other program and field trip fees.
● This application procedure covers Brookline Early Education Program Tuition. ● This application procedure does not cover optional field trips or programs and school lunch, which require a separate application for Free/Reduced fees
● In order to maintain your eligibility for this school year, you MUST submit a new application, along with current supporting documents.
Social Lunch/ Lunch Lounge is back at BHS - 115 campus!
Social Lunch/ Lunch Lounge is offered for all of the students who may or may not have some social connections in classes, including new to BHS students. It is a welcoming, inclusive drop-in lunch community that engages kids with the “social scaffolding” of friendly conversation, other kids interested in making friends, and a warm and familiar staff member. At this time, Lunch Lounge is offered for these lunch blocks in Room 277 (Updated Location):
Week A - Monday E -Lunch B only
Wednesday C - Lunch A and B
Friday D - Lunch A and B
Week B - Monday E - Lunch B will start week of 9/20
Wed C - Lunch A and B
Friday D - Lunch A and B
Community Service Opportunities for BHS Students:
FLARE parent group of the Pierce School is again seeking several responsible, open-minded high school students who are comfortable running some activities with children who build on cross-cultural understanding, including a scavenger hunt at our Pierce School community building family event at Emerson park, hosted by our parent group FLARE (Families Leading to Advance Racial Equity) Wednesday October 6th from 5 to 7 (our rain date). We will also be celebrating Latinx /Hispanic heritage month at this event and as a plus, we will have great Latin American food and music. Please contact Lisa Stahl at email@example.com if you are interested in this great volunteer opportunity.
Student Directors of the Brookline Tutor Mentor Program (BTMP) are looking for tutors. The BTMP was founded in 2014 with the goal of connecting high-schoolers and middle schoolers both through academics and a supportive mentor system. We individually pair middle school students and high-achieving high school tutors based on students’ academic needs and interests. We aim to offer a tutor and a role model for kids who are struggling academically, need an extra challenge, or just want a friend. The Brookline Tutor Mentor Program is looking to recruit high schoolers to tutor and guide middle school kids. Being a tutor-mentor is one of the most fulfilling positions in the community. Not only will you receive community service hours and a good addition to your resume, but as a high school student, tutoring gives you an opportunity to truly engage with and support a middle school student. Whether they are struggling with school or need advice from a friendly face, the tutor-mentor program is their rock that can be relied on at any time. As role models, our job is to motivate young students and aid them in growing into mature young adults. Students and their mentors often create deep bonds that transcend age differences and continue even beyond the Tutor-Mentor Program.
Please note: This year, the BTMP schedule is completely remote for the time being due to COVID-19. Because of this, tutoring hours are flexible! Tutors will be offered a large selection of times to meet with their students. If you apply, please regularly check your email for updates on meeting times, etc. If you are interested in giving back, earning community service hours, and adding something meaningful and unique to your resume, apply at https://bit.ly/BTMPTutorApplication. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions!
SENIORS FILLING OUT THE BHS TRANSCRIPT REQUEST FORMS – Please be sure to add complete college addresses on this form (not just use zip codes). With so many colleges having multiple campuses, it is sometimes impossible to know which location you are applying. Not doing this step completely holds up your paperwork processing on our end. Thank you!
BHS Guide to Applying to Colleges is a good introduction to the nuts and bolts of applying to college from BHS. Document also attached to this email.
Counselors of seniors continue to join senior advisories through early October to share senior’s unofficial transcripts for review plus continue information sharing and support regarding the post high school planning process.
College Representatives are virtually speaking to BHS seniors Mon –Thurs from 4-8pm. Every fall, BHS hosts admission counselors from many of our top universities. They come specifically to talk to you and answer your questions. It is a great opportunity for you to connect to colleges without traveling! This year, the visits will be virtual, and after school (starting at 4 pm). You will need to sign up for visits through Naviance (https://student.naviance.com/colleges/visits). Please take a look at this list and sign up. If you need help logging in to Naviance, email Lenny Libenzon or your counselor. Seniors can attend any and all college sessions of schools they plan to or are interested in attending. The schedule and REQUIRED zoom link registration can be found on your Naviance homepage. This is a wonderful way to learn more about colleges, ask important questions, and show demonstrated interest!
Beware of the US News and World Report Rankings! Please read this article to better understand what these rankings may or may not be helpful with - http://hscw-counselorscorner.blogspot.com/2021/09/friends-dont-let-friends-us-news.html
Application Essay Questions? The 18th Annual Brookline High School College Essay Writing Workshop was held this past Saturday. Big thanks to all parents, BHS staff, and community members as well as seniors who participated!
Other application essay writing support at BHS:
- Check in with your counselor or Mr Libenzon (BHS College Counselor) for essay support too!
- We continue to recommend the College Essay Guy website for lots of great FREE advice for seniors and essay writing suggestions - https://www.collegeessayguy.com/
* Look at this 8 minute youtube video on College Essay Mistakes (and how to avoid them) offers some excellent considerations as you start/work on/finish your college application essay - https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCh3V2VU1UcZEDr6E3ztsFkA
- And another 2 minute youtube on the topic The Dangers of Getting Personal Statement Feedback From Too Many People - Meet Pete the Cate… I know. You’ll get it when you watch https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rpKp2x43o1M
SENIORS– READ YOUR EMAILS! Especially if you are applying to college this Fall!
Seniors - You will be asked to review your unofficial transcript for any missing classes or errors in your upcoming senior seminars. Contact your counselor with any questions or concerns.
It is your responsibility to be sure your transcript is accurate before giving BHS permission to send to any colleges or post HS grad programs.
You should be checking that you are earning all required credits towards graduation this June 2022 too.
English- 4 credits
Science - 3 credits
Social Studies/History - 3 credits including US History
Math - 3 credits (4 years required for UMass State colleges/universities) World Language - 2 credits (same language)
Elective - 3 credits distributed across Visual Arts, Performing Arts, Career/Tech, Community Service
Wellness - .5 Lifetime Wellness, 3 - .25 wellness credits
+ additional credits to earn minimum total credits of 22
We will not be sharing any GPA information with colleges on official transcripts. See your Naviance account for your current “working” BHS GPA.
College Application Reminders:
Help the BHS counselors and teachers support your application process by meeting these deadlines. Submit your electronic transcript release forms, your
self-questionnaire, your parent/caregiver’s “brag” sheet, and give notice to your teachers who have agreed to write recommendations for you.
If you have a college deadline earlier than Nov 1, you are late in meeting the BHS deadline. Please see your counselor in the next few days.
College Deadline BHS Deadline
November 1 Monday, Oct 4
November 15 Monday, Oct 18
December 1 Tuesday, Nov 2
December 15 Monday, November 15
January 1 Monday, November 29 (includes no school December break)
January 15 Monday,December 13
February 1 Wednesday, January 5
February 15 Tuesday, January 18
Seniors – When submitting your transcript release forms electronically, please:
● use the updated transcript release link shared by your counselor
● be sure to list your college names and addresses CORRECTLY AS THEY APPEAR OFFICIALLY ON THE COLLEGE’S WEBSITE OR NAVIANCE. The processing of your request is slowed down by not including the official name of the college or putting in wrong information.
Interested in a Gap Year? Please refer to the Gap Year resources shared in Lenny Libenzon’s powerpoint mentioned above from the 9/9/21 senior parent presentation and also look into https://quakervoluntaryservice.org/
BHS Guidance will be offering a Gap Year [virtual] presentation later this year. Stay tuned!
As mentioned in Lenny Libenzon’s Post High School Planning presentation, NACAC offers Fall Virtual Fairs. The virtual fairs continued to be offered on Oct 24, Nov 2 and 14. Go to this link (https://virtualcollegefairs.org/conventions) for all the info!
JUNIORS and SENIORS
THIS THURSDAY 6:30PM ZOOM - Parents and Students are invited to participate in the virtual BHS panel discussion of college admissions. Admission representatives will give updates about their schools and then answer audience questions. This fall, we have five colleges in attendance: Boston University, Northeastern, Mass Bay Community College, UMass Amherst, University of Vermont
Topic: College Admissions Panel Zoom
Time: Oct 7, 2021 06:30 PM Eastern Time (US and Canada)
Join Zoom Meeting
Meeting ID: 934 3971 8746
A Healthier Approach to College Admissions – offered by the excellent organization Challenge Success
OCT 5th at 7pm ET
What is “fit” and why does it matter?
Are students who attend higher-ranked colleges better off later in life?
What do college rankings really measure?
Learn strategies to help reduce pressure around the college admissions process and ways to support students' well-being and readiness for life in college and beyond. With the pandemic inserting more uncertainty into this process, we will include a Q&A at the end to answer some of your most pressing questions. $10 per person. Appropriate for parents, students, college counselors, and educators. Copy and paste this link to register - https://form.jotform.com/212587737008158
Registration for the 2022 AP exams-
Students at Brookline High School will be registering online. Online Exam registration will begin on Mon, Oct 4, 2021 at 5:00 AM and end on Mon, Nov 8, 2021 at 11:59 PM. The AP exam registration process has two steps, but both can be completed in one sitting when the student and parent/guardian do this together. Even if you do not plan to take the AP exam, you need to complete both steps to access the College Board’s AP resources. Both steps must be completed in order to have AP exams ordered:
Step 1: Begin the process by registering at www.TotalRegistration.net/AP/220445. Here you will indicate both the AP courses you are taking this year and the exams you wish to take. You will receive your join codes and directions to complete the second required step. Any exam fees will be paid online so be sure to have a debit card or credit card available before beginning registration. Paying online is a great way to make sure that payment has been made while avoiding mailing payment.
Step 2: Use the join codes provided at the completion of step one to enroll the student's AP courses and exams in the College Board's system.
This year each AP exam costs $105.00. Brookline High School would like to support every student in an AP class to take their AP exams. Students requiring financial assistance should contact Alexia Thomas, email@example.com, to learn more. If a student decides not to take an exam they must cancel their exam by November 15th, 2021 to get a full refund, students can get a partial refund if they cancel by March 15th, 2021.
Here are the important dates for the registration process:
· Mon, Oct 4, 2021 at 5:00 AM - Registration Begins
· Mon, Nov 15, 2021 at 11:59 PM - Registrations and payments after this date will incur a $40 late fee per exam.
· Mon, Nov 8, 2021 at 11:59 PM - Registration Ends
· Mon, Nov 15, 2021 - Registrations that have not been paid for will be cancelled and exams will not be ordered.
· Mon, Nov 15, 2021 - Last day to cancel an exam and receive a full refund.
Please contact Alexia Thomas, firstname.lastname@example.org , if you would like to register for an exam not listed or have any questions.
Alexia Thomas and Kate Kennedy, AP Exam Coordinators
BHS will be offering the Saturday PSAT on October 16, 2021 at the high school. Online registration started on Monday 9/20 and will close THIS Friday 10/8.
Please see the attached flyer for all the details.
Thank you to the over 100 Gr 10 parents and guardians for joining last week’s Gr 10 Counselor and Dean Meet and Greet zoom!
If you missed it, please copy and paste this link into your browser-
9th Grade Counselor Meet and Greet @ Thu Oct 7, 2021 8:30am - 9:30am
Join this zoom to be introduced to the 9th grade counselors and hear more about how they are getting to know your student -
If you haven’t read the Gr 9 Counselor Welcome Letter – please check it out on the attachments to this email.
The 9th grade counseling team will begin hosting a Social Lunch for 9th grade students who might benefit from having a quieter place to eat lunch, especially our students who have had a more difficult time finding social connections during lunch! Please see the attached flyer for more details on time and place at Old Lincoln School on Wednesdays. Thanks to the counselor team for offering this important opportunity!
Please see the attached UPDATED Gr 9 Red and Blue Cohort schedules.