Counseling Advisory Committee (CAC)

2022-2023

Chairpersons: Karen Greenfeld and Debby Orsak            Email:  wjhs.ptsa.cac@gmail.com

The Counseling Advisory Committee (CAC) is a PTSA-sponsored committee that works with the Counseling Services Department to increase communication among parents, students, and the school. Together with the Counseling Services Department, the CAC sponsors parent and student meetings that provide information on academic and social issues to help students succeed at WJ and beyond.  The CAC is comprised of parents, students, Counseling Services staff, and administrators.  

Events

Resources

2022 Fall
Join the WJPTSA Listerve 
2023 Winter&Spring
JUNIORS
What You Need to Know Between Now and Applying to College
Mock Exams 
SENIORS
2023 WJ Senior Information
Alphabetized List & Descriptions
 
 

Events Schedule

2022 Fall Events 

[Back to Events and Resources]

Date

Time

Event

Location

Recorded Presentation

Meeting Materials

9/12

7:00pm Mon

Senior Parent Meeting

WJ Auditorium

Recorded Presentatio

Slide Presentation

9/14

7:00pm Wed

College Essay Tips: How to Find Your Wow Factor

Virtual

Recorded Presentation

Meeting Materials

9/19

7:00pm Mon

Freshman Parent Meeting

WJ Auditorium

 

Slide Presentation/

Handouts

9/28

7:00pm Wed

Sophomore Parent Meeting

WJ Auditorium

 

 

10/3

7:00pm Mon

Junior Parent Meeting

WJ Auditorium

   

10/10

7:00pm Mon

College Admissions Testing Q&A

Virtual

 

 

10/13

7:00pm Thr

Admissions 101

Virtual

 

 

10/15

9:00am Sat

Mock ACT

WJ Cafeteria

 

 

10/17

7:00pm Mon

How to Think About Extracurriculars

Virtual

 

 

10/26

7:00pm Wed

College Financial Aid

Virtual

 

 

11/15

7:00pm Tue

Understanding AP Classes

Virtual

 

 

11/19

9:00am Sat

Mock SAT

WJ Cafeteria

 

 

11/28

7:00pm Mon

Mock SAT/ACT Test Results Interpretation

Virtual

 

 

12/5

7:00pm Mon

Jumpstart to College:Earning College Credit While in High School

Virtual

 

 

12/20

Lunch 11:05-12:00 Tue

Alumni College Lunch for Seniors

College/Career Center

 

 

 

CAC Sponsored 2022-2023 Mock ACT & SAT Testing   

[Back to Events and Resources]

Mock ACT - Oct. 15, 2022 9:00am - 1:00pm

Mock SAT - Nov. 19, 2022 9:00am - 1:00pm

Mock SAT - February 11, 2023 9:00am - 1:00pm

Mock ACT - March 18, 2023 9:00am - 1:00pm

Mock Tests Description and FAQs

Mock Test Registration

Register here for a mock exam using Pay4schoolstuff.com for the first time 

Register here if you already have a Pay4schoolstuff.com account

2023 Winter/Spring Events - TBA

Date

Time

Event

Location

Recorded Presentation

Meeting Materials

 

MEETING DESCRIPTIONS

[Back to Events and Resources]

 

Admissions 101 - Fall

This seminar will help families separate college admissions fact from fiction and enjoy the college process a little more. We’ll discuss grades, test scores, activities, and everything else colleges evaluate. Attendees will get straight answers about what college admissions committees really look for and how they ultimately decide who gets in. We think kids and parents will be pleasantly surprised to learn that kids don’t have to be trilingual, opera-singing rocket scientists to get into college today.

[Back to Fall Events]

Alumni College Luncheon - Fall

This annual event sponsored by WJ Counseling Services invites recent WJ graduates to chat about their college experiences with current seniors. Alumni interested in speaking to WJ seniors should contact Counseling Services.

[Back to Fall Events]

 

College Admissions Panel - Winter/Spring

An informative night presented by a panel of college admission representatives from a variety of colleges and universities.  Each College Rep presents important information on: how to determine to which colleges one should apply; the college application, selection, and acceptance process; what colleges value in an applicant; why a college tour is important, and so much more.  One of the most important meetings you can attend if your student is considering attending college.

[Back to Winter/Spring Events]

College Admissions Testing Q&A - Fall

This is an informal meeting which provides information on the SAT and ACT exams.  Topics include comparison of the SAT and ACT (test focus, structure, and timing), exam grading, exam calendars, score reporting to colleges, information on the SAT Subject Tests and more.

[Back to Fall Events]

College Essay Tips - How to Find Your Wow Factor

This presentation provides information for students on “How to Find and Communicate your WOW Factor in your College Essays.” *PLUS – Where else will you encounter writing on your application, and how can you stand out? How has the pandemic affected college writing requirements – what’s new, what isn’t? Learn “Top Do’s and Don’ts” for college essays, trends and roadblocks many students face in the writing sections of their applications, and hear excerpts from “rockstar essays” to demonstrate how to be authentic, creative, and communicate WOW in YOUR writing! 

[Back to Winter/Spring Events]

 College Financial Aid - Fall

The college financial aid meeting is designed to help parents understand the Financial Aid Process (FAFSA), the Cost of Attendance (COA), understand the Expected Family Contribution (EFC), and help determine financial need and the types and sources of financial aid.

[Back to Fall Events]

College Saturday - Winter

A comprehensive half-day of large-group and break-out presentations on topics relevant to students preparing for the college admissions process.  Topics may include staying organized, application advice and tips, admissions testing, essay writing, resources and tools for college planning, financial aid, and much more.

[Back to Winter/Spring Events]

Colleges that Change Lives - Winter/Spring

This meeting is co-sponsored by WJ PTSA and several other area high school PTAs.  Colleges That Change Lives (CTCL) is a non-profit organization dedicated to helping families and students understand how to use the college search process to find the best college fit. Too often the media stories scare students and parents as they approach the college search process.  This should be a joyful time, not a high stakes game which neglects the individual fit.  Find out why this happens and how the process can be approached with a focus on the student--not the rankings and ratings--in order to determine a great college choice. Admission is free and there is no need to RSVP.  Feel free to invite friends from other schools. You may also want to view the Colleges That Change Lives website: www.ctcl.org.

[Back to Winter/Spring Events]

Fall Parent Grade Level Meetings - Fall

One meeting per grade (9th, 10th, 11th, and 12th) is held during the first few weeks of school. The purpose of each meeting is to provide parents with grade level information related to academics, extracurricular activities, and social issues.  Those present at the meeting include the WJHS Principal, Assistant Principals, Counseling Services Director, and others who can help parents and students know what to expect during the school year. 

[Back to Fall Events]

Highly Selective College Admissions - Winter/Spring

Grades, test scores, and impressive activities alone won't get a student admitted to schools that reject almost all of their applicants. So how do students who get accepted to the Ivy Leagues, Stanford, Tufts and the rest of the nation’s most selective colleges set themselves apart from the rest of the applicant pool?  We'll show you at this seminar.  We’ll also reveal some Collegewise strategies to improve a student’s chances of admission at the most selective schools.  While we don't believe that prestigious colleges are necessarily better colleges, we want students who are interested in these schools to have straight answers about what it will really take to have a shot at getting in.

[Back to Winter/Spring Events]

How to Think About Extracurriculars - Fall

Colleges want students that are active, contributing members of their communities, and who are developing their talents and passions. What should students consider as they decide how they choose to spend their time outside of class? Learn some guidelines to help students in making decisions about extracurriculars. These guidelines are meant not only to help students preserve quality of life, but also to position them well for college admissions.

[Back to Fall Events] 

 

Jumpstart to College Program:  Earning College Credit in High School -Fall

This meeting will discuss Jumpstart to College program, a non degree seeking program for students to take college courses and earn college credits while still attending high school. The topics will include, but are not limited to the following: Compare Jumpstart to College and other Dual Enrollment programs offered through Montgomery College (MC) and MCPS partnership, benefits of Jumpstart (including cost and flexibility), differences between MC and AP classes, transfer of MC credit to other institutions, dual credit option (receiving HS credit for college courses), MC courses offered at Walter Johnson High School, eligibility requirements, and steps of enrollment.

[Back to Fall Events]

Junior College Planning Meeting - Winter/Spring

The purpose of this meeting is to provide 11th grade parents and student with information related to the steps that they need to take now to get them ready to prepare for applying to colleges in the Fall and planning for their post-secondary life. Those presenting at the meeting include the WJHS Principal, Assistant Principals, the Counseling Services Director, and the College/Career Coordinator.

[Back to Winter/Spring Events]

Little Know Secrets for Paying for College - Winter/Spring

On average, tuition tends to increase about 8% per year. An 8% college inflation rate means that the cost of college doubles about every nine years.  Planning for these expenses has become essential. Some families have children attending college next year and others have years to plan, but the fears of tackling these monumental and rising costs are the same.The College Funding Coach® is here to help families figure out HOW to pay for it and still retire one day.

[Back to Winter/Spring Events]

Mock ACT/SAT Testing Results Interpretation - Fall and Winter/Spring

This meeting helps students and parents understand the results of mock SAT and mock ACT exams administered at WJ. General information about standardized testing and options for test preparation are also provided.

[Back to Winter/Spring Events]

Naviance Explained - Winter/Spring

A valuable meeting for sophomores, juniors and their parents on the use of the Naviance/Family Connection software package to navigate the college and career process.  Learn about the wealth of information on colleges and universities available to all WJ students as they move through the college selection process. In addition, Naviance/Family Connection is used to inform WJ students about upcoming visits by college reps and to send teacher references and transcript electronically to colleges.   Each student has a login and password to the system so that the research done uses personal data and selection criteria.

[Back to Winter/Spring Events]

PSAT Results Interpretation - Winter/Spring

This meeting will provide an explanation of what the PSAT scores mean and answer questions from parents and students about the PSAT and other standardized testing for college.

[Back to Winter/Spring Events]

Safe Teen Driving - Winter/Spring

Tom Pecoraro, the founder and president of I Drive Smart, Inc., will present The Smart Six Teen Safe Driving Program. I Drive Smart has been conducting this informative, brief program for the past 18 years to parents and teens throughout the region. The Smart Six identifies the six causative factors always involved when a teen is seriously injured or killed in a vehicle collision.  The Smart Six Program will help parents understand how these factors arise and how to mitigate the risks for all new drivers and their passengers. 

[Back to Winter/Spring Events]

Senior Class Graduation - Winter/Spring

A meeting for the senior class and their parents. Important information on graduation requirements, prom activities, and the graduation ceremony is presented.

[Back to Winter/Spring Events]

Ten Things Professors Wish Every Freshman Knew - Winter/Spring

Collegebound students are invited to a lunchtime presentation to learn what professors would like every college freshman to know.

[Back to Winter/Spring Events]

Understanding AP Classes  - Fall

 A meeting focused on discussing the demands of AP Courses, when a student might take an AP course, AP tests, college credit and other questions parents and students may have about AP Courses offered at Walter Johnson.
 

Mock Exams - Fall and Winter/Spring

Mock Test Regstration Information

 

[Back to Fall Events]    [Back to Winter/Spring Events]

Mock Exams Fall and Winter/Spring 2022-2023

Each year the WJ PTSA Counseling Advisory Committee (CAC) sponsors full length mock testing of both the ACT & SAT exams to provide practice for interested students. Both tests are offered with accommodations for those students who request it. The scores from mock exams are not seen by anyone other than the student.  Cost is $15 per student for each test – all proceeds benefit the WJ PTSA. Please contact your student's counselor if financial assistance is needed.  Each student must register at least 48 hours before the exam. The exam will begin at 9 am. A results meeting will take place following the tests to provide information and explanation about the scores. 

Please read the following FAQ’s and their answers. If you have additional questions email Maria Turner at mturner4709@gmail.com.

Q: What time should students arrive for the mock exams?

A: The exam begins at 9am. The doors to the cafeteria will open at 8:30 am for check-in.

Q: What does my student need during the test?

A: Students should have pencils, a calculator, a snack and water. 

Q: Are the mock tests required?

A: No. The mock tests are not required at all. The WJPTSA provides these mock tests as a service for students who wish to practice taking the ACT and SAT before they take the actual tests. We offer the mock tests twice a year - once in the fall and once in the spring. The mock test scores do not “count” for any school applications or scholarships. They are for information purposes only such as to see how the student tests, which test would be a better choice and to get accustomed to sitting for a test that is approximately 4 hours long.

Q: Who can take the mock tests?

A: The mock tests are open to all Walter Johnson students. The majority of students who take these mock tests are 10th and 11th graders. 

Q: What is the cost of the mock exam?

A: The mock ACT and mock SAT are $15 each.

Q: How do I register for the mock exams?

A: Go to the  Mock Tests section of this page. 

Q: Is the mock SAT the same thing as the PSAT?

A: No, the PSAT is administered by the school through the counseling office. The mock ACT/SAT is a service provided by the WJ PTSA CAC for students to practice taking the ACT/SAT before taking the actual ACT/SAT.

Q: How do I get my score?

A: There will be a mock test results meeting on November 28, 2022 at 7pm via Zoom. Scores will be emailed prior to the meeting and Capital Educators will explain what the results mean.

Q:  Can students do anything to prepare for the mock?

A:  The College Board and the nonprofit Khan Academy® have teamed up to provide free, personalized SAT study resources for all students.  

To link your College Board and Khan Academy accounts:  

*Go to satpractice.org, create an account on Khan Academy or sign into your existing account.   

*When prompted, agree to link your Khan Academy and College Board Accounts.   

*Log into your College Board account and hit "Send" to get a personalized practice plan.