Lakeland High School

Counseling Newsletter

Click here to download Counseling Newsletter
Click here to download Mental Health Flyer

January/February 2023
For detailed information on services, updates, and important student & parent resources, visit  Lakeland School Counseling Department

Scheduling for 2023-24
Teachers in grades 9-11 will be speaking with their students regarding course options and will make formal recommendations for students for the 2023-24 school year. Teacher recommendations are based upon student performance and work habits
evidenced through the first half of the year. This recommendation can change if there is a decline or improvement in the student’s performance in the second half of the year. 

At the end of February and through March, counselors will be meeting with students to discuss course requests, review recommendations, formalize course requests, ensure graduation requirements are being met, and encourage students to appropriately challenge themselves. We encourage families to read through the full list of academic offerings available through the Program of Studies which is accessed on the district School Counseling webpage at Lakeland Program of Studies.  The 2023-2024 Program of Studies will be available to view in mid-February.

Understanding Course Selection and Advising
Following students’ course selections in February and March for the 2023-24 school year, parents will be able to view course requests in Home Access Center (HAC) for review and confirmation beginning April 10 until April 24. This is an opportunity for students and parents to address any questions or concerns with teachers and counselors regarding course requests.

Students and parents seeking a change in their recommended academic level can complete an academic advising form.  Academic advising ensures that the rationale for course level placement is clearly communicated between teacher, student, parent and counselor so that informed decisions can be reached. Students and parents may choose a level other than what has been recommended by completing an academic advising form.

The last day to submit an academic advising form request will be April 24.

Navigating the College Process for Classified Students
January 11th at 7pm in the Lakeland HS Library
Families in 11th and 12th grade at both Lakeland High School and Walter Panas High School are invited to learn more about how students with disabilities can access resources at the college level. This panel presentation will include college representatives
from St. Thomas Aquinas’ Pathways Program and Westchester Community College’s Disability Services Office.

The Halfway Mark!
Believe it or not, we are fast approaching the mid-year mark, with the end of the second quarter arriving on January 20th.  The mid-year point in the school calendar is a good time to evaluate your academic progress and make decisions about how you want to finish out the rest of your school year.  Of course every good decision is backed by a plan, so consider what specific changes you need to make in your habits and touch base with your counselor and teachers if you are not sure how or where to begin.

Students must also be aware of any changes to their spring schedule, such as new half-year courses that are beginning on January 23rd.  Moreover, please note that per district BOE policy, February 3rd is the last day to add a spring semester course.  March 1st is the last day to drop a spring course without notation on the transcript and March 31st is the last day to drop with notation on the transcript.

Seniors must also remember that, although mid-year grades are the last set of grades that are factored into an admissions decision, any college acceptance is a conditional acceptance, pending successful completion of the senior year.  If a student’s grades drop, the college may put the student on academic probation or take away the offer of acceptance entirely.  So be smart and plan to continue to work hard through the second half of senior year.

College Decision Letters
Seniors, please let your counselor know when you receive any admissions decisions (whether it is an acceptance, denial, or deferral) from the colleges/universities to which you applied.  If you received a deferral, remember to write to the college to let them know that you remain a very interested candidate.  Good Luck!!

Don’t Forget Your Financial Aid!
This is a reminder that by now all college-bound seniors and their parents should have filed the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) at FAFSA.  If you list a New York college on your FAFSA, you can link directly to the New York State Tuition Assistance Program (TAP).  For more information on TAP, visit TAP . You should not pay for help in seeking out scholarships, filling out the FAFSA, or applying for financial aid.  There is help available either online or by calling the Federal Student Aid Information Center at 1-800-4-FED-AID (1-800-433-3243).  Various websites offering help with filing the FAFSA for a fee are not affiliated with, or endorsed by, the U.S. Department of Education; many are scams.

Be sure to check with individual colleges to find out if they require the Financial Aid CSS Profile form (available online at Collegeboard) and/or other forms.  Note that there is a fee associated with the CSS Profile.  Links to all forms, financial aid presentations, and other financial aid tools and information are available on the district School Counseling web page.

Junior Parent Conferences Begin
What is a Junior Parent Conference (JPC)?  JPCs are meetings designed to continue the work counselors have begun with students towards their post high school planning.  In these meetings, which include parents/guardians and students, counselors will:

  • Review the student’s academic progress/profile
  • Provide planning specific to a student’s post high school goals

o   For example:  college process, standardized testing timeline

Conferences with eleventh graders and a parent or guardian are beginning February 6.  Please contact the School Counseling Office and speak with support staff to schedule a phone or Google Meet appointment during school hours.  Please note that the focus of a JPC does not necessarily have to be on the college process, as some students and families may also be exploring options related to enrolling in a trade program, going into the workforce, taking a gap year or enlisting in the military.

Upcoming Sophomore
BOCES Tech Center Visit
10th grade students will have the opportunity to learn more about the BOCES programs offered next year.  Presentations will be given by the BOCES staff and those dates and times are forthcoming.  A separate communication will be sent with detailed information.

The BOCES Tech Center offers unique opportunities for students to explore many career and college preparatory programs, providing many students with practical, employable skills.  To preview what BOCES offers, go to BOCES Tech Center.

 Important Dates to Note:

  • January 11th: Navigating College Process for Classified Students, 7pm @LHS Library (LHS and WPHS) Juniors/Seniors
  • January 20th: End of 2nd Quarter (mid-year)
  • January 31st: 2Q report cards available in Home Access Center
  • February 3rd: Last day to add second semester course
  • February 3rd: Home Access Center (HAC) opens to view teacher recommendations
  • February 6th: Junior Parent Conferences (JPC’s) begin
  • February 10th: SAT Test registration deadline for 3/11 test
  • February 11th: ACT Test date
  • February 26th Home Access Center (HAC) closes to view teacher recommendations
  • February 27th-March 31st Course selection
  • March 1st: Last day to drop second semester course without drop notation
  • April 10th: Home Access Center (HAC) opens for course verification
  • April 24th: Home Access Center (HAC) closes for course verification - Deadline to submit Academic Advising Form (if applicable) and/or course changes, BOCES applications

, 1349 East Main St. Shrub Oak, NY  10588 
PH: (914) 528-0600 (press 3, Guidance), FAX: (914) 528-3693
ADMINISTRATION:  Christopher Cummings, Principal, Alfonse Davino, Asst. Principal, Samantha Stein, Asst. Principal
COUNSELING OFFICE: Frank Gizzo, Director of School Counseling
SCHOOL COUNSELORS:  Meredith Klatsky, Kaitlyn Marshall, Gregory Millings (ACE), Bianca Raniolo, Julie Ruxton, Dennine Smith
SUPPORT STAFF:  Patricia Goff, Cheryl Hamilton, Carole Henkin, Beth O’Neill, College and Career Ctr.