We are all facing uncertainties regarding the beginning of the new school year. Some of you will be managing your students’ online education, others a hybrid model, and others are weighing the risks of having your teen return to school. The media is ripe with speculation about the impact of these changes on college admissions. First, be reassured that we at Athens Advisors track professional sources and will be on top of any news that will impact our students. Second, colleges evaluate students’ accomplishments in the context of their opportunities. All of the students in this cohort will have had to deal with the changes in their school’s delivery of instruction. Colleges understand that grading policies varied last spring and may also be non-standard this fall. This will be explained in the high school documents that accompany the application.
Grades will count, however your high school calculates them. We encourage parents to use the school’s online system to make sure students are keeping up with their work. This isolation from peers is challenging for teens who are developmentally programmed to value peer contact. They will need help from you to stay appropriately focused on school.
This fall is a time for your student to pursue their interests, as circumstances allow, whether in school or in the community. It is a time for them to begin exploring the world of college options by attending virtual college fairs, virtual college tours and even virtual college visits to high schools. Family conversations can help students identify how they learn best, the kind of a community that will best support them and the family boundaries that will help define their college choices.
Help your student find a healthy balance of schoolwork, activities and sleep and do keep on top of communications from your high school. If the PSAT is offered, and you are comfortable with the setting for the exam, do have your students sign up. If that is not an option, there will be opportunities for free SAT practice tests. We are all looking forward to the resumptions of a more normal senior year experienced for the class of ’22.