Counseling Advisory Committee (CAC)

2020-2021

Chairpersons: Yvonne Levine 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

Summer | Fall | Winter&Spring
College Preparedness Resources
Mock Exams 
Join the WJPTSA Listerve 
Alphabetized List & Descriptions
 
 

Events Schedule

2020 Virtual Summer Meetings

[Back to Events and Resources]

Date

Time

Event

Recorded Presentation

Meeting Materials

6/22

7:00pm

WJ Resources and Naviance

Recorded Presentation

Meeting Materials

6/29

7:00pm

College Admissions, Search and Virtual Touring during COVID-19

Recorded Presentation

*The information is current as of 6/29

Meeting Materials

6/30

7:00pm

Non 4-Year College Options

Recorded Presentation

 

7/6

7:00pm

College Application Essays

 

Meeting Materials

7/13

7:00pm

ACT/SAT

Recorded Presentation

Meeting Materials

7/14

7:00pm

Supporting Students with Learning Differences through the College Process…The Learning Difference Difference

Recorded Presentation

Meeting Materials

7/20

7:00pm

Navigating the Different College Applications

Recorded Presentation

 

7/27

7:00pm

Paying for College

Recorded Presentation

Meeting Materials

 

2020 Virtual Fall Events 

[Back to Events and Resources]

Date

Time

Event

Recorded Presentation

Meeting Materials

8/26

7:00pm

New Family Welcome

Recorded Presentation

 

9/8

7:00pm

Senior Parent Meeting

 

Meeting Materials

9/14

7:00pm

Freshman Parent Meeting

Recorded Presentation

Meeting Materials

9/21

7:00pm

Junior Parent Meeting

Recorded Presentation

Meeting Materials

9/29

7:00pm

Sophomore Parent Meeting

 

 

10/6

7:00pm

How to Write a Great College Essay

 

 

10/7

8:15am

Parent Coffee: College Admissions Testing

 

 

10/10

9:00am

Mock ACT

 

 

10/20

7:00pm

College Financial Aid Meeting

 

 

10/28

7:00pm

Understanding AP Classes

 

 

11/14

9:00am

Mock SAT

 

 

11/23

7:00pm

Mock SAT and ACT Test Results Interpretation

 

 

12/9

7:00pm

Dual Enrollment: Earning College Credit in High School

 

 

12/22

 

Alumni College Lunch for Seniors

 

 

 

CAC Sponsored Mock ACT & SAT Testing   

[Back to Events and Resources]

Mock ACT - Oct. 10, 9:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.

Mock SAT - Nov. 14, 9:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.

Mock SAT - Feb. 20, 9:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.

Mock ACT - March 20, 9:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m. 

Mock Tests Description and FAQs

Mock Test Registration - NOW OPEN

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

Register here if you already have a Pay4schoolstuff.com account

 

2021 Winter/Spring Meetings (tentative)

[Back to Events and Resources]

Date

Time

Event

Recorded Presentation

Meeting Materials

1/11

7:00pm

PSAT Results Interpretation

 

 

2/2

7:00pm

Safe Teen Driving

 

 

2/9

8:15am

Parent Coffee: College Admissions Testing

 

 

2/17

7:00pm

Little Known Secrets for Paying for College

 

 

3/3

7:00pm

Naviance Parent Coffee

 

 

TBD

 

Colleges that Change Lives

 

 

3/8

7:00pm

Naviance Parent Meeting

 

 

3/16

7:00pm

Optimizing the College Visit

 

 

3/22

7:00pm

College Admissions Panel

 

 

3/23

7:00pm

Mock SAT and ACT Test Results Interpretation

 

 

3/25

7:00pm

Senior Parent Meeting, Graduation

 

 

4/13

7:00pm

Paying For College By Finding The Right Fit

 

 

4/21

7:00pm

How to Write a Great College Essay

 

 

4/23

 

Ten Things Professors Wish Every Freshman Knew

 

 

 

MEETING DESCRIPTIONS

[Back to Events and Resources]

ACT / SAT during COVID - Summer Series

Learn what Test-Optional and Test-Flexible means, understanding superscoring and review a chart of standardized test dates.

Back to Summer Meetings

 

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 Night for Juniors - 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 Search and Virtual Touring during COVID-19 - Summer Series

Lean how COVID has affected the college application process and how to stand out on a an application when few extracurricular activities are available. Get advice on making the most of your virtual college visit and how to keep up with Colleges from search to decision day.

Back to Summer Meetings

 

College Application Essays - Summer Series

Review essay examples and learn about topics to avoid during COVID.  Hear about the importance of the supplemental essays and how to address the COVID question on the Common App and where to get Feedback on your Essays.

Back to Summer Meetings

 

 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

 

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]

 

Dual Enrollment:  Earning College Credit in High School -Fall

This meeting will discuss Dual Enrollment (taking college courses while still attending high school). The topics will include, but are not limited to the following: Jump Start to College & traditional Dual Enrollment, benefits of Dual Enrollment (including cost), differences between Montgomery College (MC) and AP classes, transfer of MC credit to other institutions, dual credit option (receiving HS credit for college courses), eligibility requirements, and steps of enrollment.

Back to Fall 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, Grade Level Administrator, Counseling Services Director, and others who can help parents and students know what to expect during the school year. 

[Back to Fall Events]

 

How to Write a Great College Essay - Fall and Winter/Spring

Many great kids write average (even bad) college essays - essays about "life lessons learned from football" or "how my trip to Europe broadened my cultural horizons."  Better tales are there for the writing.  This workshop will show you what admissions officers really look for in great college essays, and offer suggestions for finding and sharing your best stories.

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

 

Little Know Secrets for Paying for College - Winter/Spring

The cost of a college education is higher than ever. How will you afford this expense? What if your children attend elite or out-of-state schools? What if they don’t graduate in four years? The costs can be monumental. This workshop will teach you how to send your children to the college of their dreams without bankrupting your retirement nest egg. You’ll discover strategies that may enable you to qualify for financial aid, sources for scholarships, and strategies for maximizing your wealth and minimizing your tax exposure, giving you greater cash flow for funding a college education.

[Back to Winter/Spring Events]

 

Navigating the Different College Applications - Summer Series

Demonstration of opening a Common App and a Coalition App Account.  Learn the difference between Early Action vs. Early Decision and declaring undecided or with a Major.

Back to Summer Meetings

 

New Family Welcome - Fall

An informal virtual meet and greet of your Walter Johnson Family.  New WJ families will be welcomed by WJ’s Administration, Representatives from WJ’s Parent Associations, WJ’s Athletic Director and Coordinators from WJ’s Clubs and Organizations

[Back to Fall Events]

 

Non 4-Year College Options - Summer Series

Learn about gap year and other community and technical colleges options.

Back to Summer Meetings

 
 

Optimizing the College Visit - Winter/Spring

Learn how to get the most out of your college campus visit and how best to understand the culture of a school and explore academic options.

[Back to Winter/Spring Events]

 

Naviance Parent Meeting & Coffee - 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]

 

Parent Coffee:  College Admissions Testing Q&A - Fall and Winter/Spring

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]      [Back to Winter/Spring Events]

 

 

Paying for College - Summer Series

Learn about student loans, scholarships, how to qualify for more financial aid during COVID (FAFSA) and little-known secrets of paying for college.

Back to Summer Meetings

 

Paying for College by Finding the Right Fit  - Winter/Spring

Students who find colleges that fit aren't just more likely to get in - they're more likely to get financial aid and scholarships.  This seminar will explore how to find the schools that are the best for you while being mindful of economics.  Speaker discusses the various ways to lower your cost of attendance - including merit aid, co-op schools and identifying great colleges that don't hurl you into debt for the next 20 years, all while staying true to the idea that the best college is one where our student is both happy and successful.

[Back to Winter/Spring Events]

 

Private School Transition

Families of 8th grade students who are considering transitioning from private school to WJHS are invited in to learn about WJ, hear testimonials from students who have made the transition, and ask questions. The meeting is attended by the WJHS Principal and Counseling Services Director. 

[Back to Fall Events]

 

PSAT and Mock Testing Results Interpretation - Fall &Winter/Spring

These meetings help students and parents understand the results of the PSAT, mock SAT and mock ACT exams.  General information about standardized testing and options for test preparation are also provided.

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

 

Safe Teen Driving - Winter/Spring

A presentation through I Drive Smart's Community Education Initiative called the "Smart Six Program," which educates parents and teens on the known six causative factors of teen deaths in vehicle collisions and how to prevent them. 

[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]

 

Supporting Students with Learning Differences through the College Process…The Learning Difference Difference - Summer Series

Specializing in college bound students who have learning differences such as ADHD, executive dysfunction, dyslexia, autism spectrum disorder, and other specific learning disabilities.

Back to Summer Meetings

 

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

 

WJ Resources and Naviance - Summer Series

Learn how to prepare for a virtual counselor meeting during COVID-19, how to obtain teacher and counselor recommendation letters and how to submit a transcript request. 

Back to Summer Meetings

 

Mock Exams - Fall and Winter/Spring

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

Mock Exams Fall and Winter/Spring 2020-2021

WJCAC is pleased to partner with Capital Educators for our mock SAT and ACT testing.  

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. Until school reopens, the Mock exams will take place remotely but they will mirror the actual exam experience.  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. Exam materials will be sent out via email the day 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 Naira Darius at dariustrio@gmail.com.

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

A: The exam begins at 9am. Students should report at 8:45am with a final time of 8:55am.

Q: How will I take the test at home?

A: Test materials will be emailed the day before the test.

  • If students print out the materials, they'll be filling out their answers in pencil on their Scantron forms, and they'll be using the test booklet as scratch paper;
  • If students do not print out materials, they'll be reading the test on-screen and filling out their answers in pencil on a separate sheet of paper.  Students reading the exam online will need scratch paper.

Q.: How and where do I send my test answers?

A: All students should be prepared to take photos of their answer sheets and email them directly to Phil Pine, Capital Educators (philpine@capitaleducators.com) before they leave the virtual testing room.

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 23, 2020 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.