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High School Planning Checklist

Grade 9
Grade 10
Grade 11
Grade 12
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Freshman Year

Grade 9

  • The College & Career Advisor will meet with the Grade 9 class and give a brief overview of how high school works, some differences students should expect, and some important keys to success.

  • Map out courses that should be taken to fully prepare for college.  Your advisor will provide you with information that you will  need to make course decisions.

  • Begin to build your college file of important documents and materials needed for your future.

  • Develop good study and work habits.  Always follow teacher directions and complete assignments on time.  These work attitudes will serve you well throughout high school and college!

  • Always seek out your teacher(s) when you don't understand the lesson or homework assignments.  Teachers truly appreciate students who take initiative.

  • Take your first Pre-ACT and PSAT at school in early fall.  Begin to make weekly practice time for ACT and SAT a regular part of your schedule.

  • Attend local college fairs as announced by the school advisor.

  • Begin college and scholarship searches and participate in any age-appropriate scholarship competitions, such as essay contests.

  • Become involved in school, church, and community activities.

  • Assume a leadership position when the opportunity arises.  Leadership successes will be important to future college and scholarship opportunities.

  • Complete your Grade 9 resume using the template provided by our advisor and submit it by May 1st.

  • Be cognizant of your social media profile and posts.  You are responsible for your online presence.

  • In the spring, the College & Career Advisor will meet individually with you for a Freshman "get to know you" and planning meeting.

  • Open a student SCOIR account and set up your user profile, bio, and college preferences.  Use SCOIR to learn about colleges in our area, the state, and/or out-of-state.


Grade 10

  • Attend local college fairs as announced by the school advisor.

  • Continue to work diligently and strive for excellence in all subjects.  You are building your transcript and what you do matters!

  • Continue college scholarship searches.  Create an account at or to assist you.

  • Become an active participant in a club, not just a member.  Volunteer and log hours and places of service.

  • Strive for leadership positions within service, club, or athletic organizations.

  • Take the PSAT and Pre-ACT at school and take additional practice tests online for the ACT/SAT.  Meet with your College & Career Advisor to discuss test product strengths and suggestions for future progress.  Review college profiles for schools of interest to determine if you meet their academic criteria.

  • Continue to watch your social media and conduct yourself appropriately.  College admissions teams do look at this information.

  • Meet with your College & Career Advisor in the spring to discuss next year's course of study and to make plans for college research, visits, and potential major exploration activities.

  • Update your SCOIR account.  Complete the YouScience Career Inventory on SCOIR if you haven't done so already.  Save a PDF of the results to MyDrive in your SCOIR account.

  • Complete your Grade 10 resume using the template provided by your advisor and submit it by May 1st.

  • Add relevant materials to your college file.

  • Make plans for a productive summer by early March.  Research volunteer opportunities for major exploration, summer camps on college campuses of interest, ACT/SAT test prep workshops or courses, or other impactful experiences (mission work, summer jobs, etc.).


Grade 11

  • Keep your grades up all year long.  This is your final year to show college admissions counselors what you are made of.  When you apply to college next year, admissions teams will see a transcript including Grades 9-11.

  • Meet with your College & Career Advisor in the fall (Oct/Nov) for a thorough individual Junior meeting.  This meeting will follow a Grade 11 class advising session and will take place once the Junior student and the Junior parent questionnaires are completed and returned.

  • Continue attending local college fairs as announced by the school advisor.

  • Meet with college representatives as they visit CCS throughout the year or at other local venues, even if you are not sure you want to attend that particular institution.

  • Begin in earnest to investigate college scholarship/financial aid opportunities.  Apply when appropriate.

  • Research SCOIR to learn more about colleges in our area, the state, and/or out-of-state.  Be sure to "follow" schools of interest.  By now, your parents should also have an SCOIR account.  Note parents and advisor recommendations for college.  If interested, move those schools to the follow column.

  • Continue investigating career options and college majors.  Investigate results from the career inventory given during the Pre-ACT.  The career map indicates potential good match career areas.  Revisit your YouScience results on SCOIR as well.

  • Continue participation and leadership roles in various school, church, and community organizations.

  • Take the Pre-ACT/PSAT again in the fall to become eligible for The National Merit Scholarship Competition and to get a true measure of where you might score on the ACT and SAT.

  • Complete your Grade 11 resume and upload in SCOIR.  This will be used for college applications and for teachers to write recommendations on your behalf.  Do not be humble on your resume.  This is the time to shine!

  • Begin college visits.  You need to get your feet on college campuses to know if you can picture yourself there.  Make a workable plan with your family to get dates and times on the calendar to travel together for Open House, Campus Previews, and other college visit dates.

  • Take the ACT or SAT in the winter of this school year.  Follow in late spring/early summer with another ACT or SAT.

  • Register with NCAA Initial Eligibility if you plan to play sports in college.  Transcripts will be uploaded by your advisor in the summer after your Junior year.

  • Keep your social media clean and respectful.  You represent your God, your family and your school.

  • Meet with your College & Career Advisor in the spring to discuss Senior year courses, graduation requirements, and summer "to dos" as you get a jump start on the college application season.


Grade 12

  • A conference with your College & Career Advisor will take place to discuss Senior year courses, college/career plans, scholarship opportunities, etc., soon after your Senior year begins.  This meeting always follows the Senior class meeting.  Remember to return your signed College Planning Guide and transcript release form at this meeting.

  • Read every email provided to you by the College & Career Advising office.  All communication is provided to help you and is information you need to successfully prepare for college.  These emails or text alerts may come often during the fall, winter, and spring to keep you informed.

  • Attend local college fairs if still undecided about future college opportunities

  • If displeased with your Junior year test scores (ACT and/or SAT), register for the earliest fall test date and retake them.

  • Complete college visits during the summer or early fall to determine your top choice(s).  Seek God's will for the best fit for you and your future.

  • Start your college application process around September 1.  Some preliminary work in Common App or on essay writing may be done over the summer.

  • Be very careful about making an "early decision" for any college unless you believe God is calling you to that school once admitted.  An early decision is always binding.

  • Complete transcript requests in SCOIR as soon as you apply to college (whether the application is done in Common App or a specific college portal), but not before you apply.  Once your application is complete, move from "following" to "applying" in SCOIR.  This generates the list or "to dos" for your advisor.

  • No "senioritis" please!  Accepting colleges do look at second semester grades when final transcripts are mailed in June after graduation.  Note:  Colleges do reserve the right to change their decision and revoke admission.

  • Social media should represent that of a young adult ready to make adult decisions.

  • Actively pursue scholarships and financial aid opportunities throughout the year.  The Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) should be completed and filed by October 1st, but definitely before December.

  • Seniors are encouraged to maintain active involvement in school functions.  Colleges (and private scholarship sponsors too) are especially interested in your leadership and community service accomplishments.

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