Monday, January 19, 2015

Improve Your Registration Process

Monday, January 19, 2015

It is that time of year again...registration. For nine weeks I will be "trapped" in my office following the same script day after day after day.  Last year, I decided to turn our mundane registration procedure into 30 minute conferences with each student. My goal is to meet every student in my alphabet at least once this year.  

Since we do not not have an Teachers As Advisers Program for our school at this time, our registration process is the only true advisement with my students and their parents.  In three week increments, I will meet with each grade level of students starting with the rising seniors.  It is going to be exhausting, but I feel this is a good investment in making relationships and giving my students the information they need to make good decisions during their senior year.

If this is your first time going through registration or you are looking to put some "meat" in your program, think about extending your registration into an advisement conference. This is not for those who want quick mini sessions, but these are real meetings that take a lot of planning.

Here is how my advisement conferences work:

1.  Students and parents arrive and are given a folder with a registration form  that is completed by me based on graduation requirements and prior courses, a list of senior courses/electives/pathway courses (a pathway course is a career/technical/fine art/foreign language), and a checklist of information we will cover.

Registration Presentation for Students - Here is a registration presentation for students prior to registration from Coweta County Schools, Georgia.

2. When students and parents arrive, they complete a Google form with demographic information. After completing that form, the student ranks 10 electives that he/she is interested in taking.

3. The student, parent, and I go over their status and goals using my updated Credit Audit Sheet, Senior Action Plan and the checklist. This will take 15 - 20 minutes.  For those who don't understand how credits work, here are two great little cheat sheets on counting credits/counting credits pt. 2 created by Centennial High School

4. Students will be given information regarding:
Difference Between Graduation and Preparing for College
Georgia's HOPE Program- HOPE is Georgia's scholarship program based on course rigor and grade point average.

For athletes, I give them a handout about the Difference Between Graduation and NCAA Requirements.


5. Following our discussion regarding courses and their rising senior plan, students will go into our college/Career Center and meet with our staff to receive testing information, Dual Enrollment information, how to request a transcript

Here is an additional handout- List of colleges and universities that do not require standardized tests

6. When students leave, they will have the following form to complete and return to me prior to next year:

Senior Recommendation Packet (this is a great example from Etowah HS in Cherokee County, Georgia).

7. Some additional information that can be given to students include:

Campus Visit Planner
Careers Trends (2020)
College Admissions Requirement in Georgia
College Application Checklist
College Application Organizer
College Application Responsibilities
College Essay Tips
College Fit Kit From Cappex
College Search Calendar
Community Service
Gap Year
GPA Calculator
Senior Survival Guide (great example from Paulding County Schools, Georgia)
Senior Timeline
Summer Programs
What prospective student should know about the Common Application

Do you have a registration and advisement format that you follow? If so, feel free to share with your counseling colleagues.