FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
How do I make an appointment with the counselor?
Appointments can be made by calling or visiting the Counseling Center Secretary, Patty West. Her direct line is (360)596-7004.
How can I get a progress report?
Parents can keep track of their student's academic progress utilizing our online grading system. Current data about student classes is available by using Family Access. Parents can also email their student's teachers with questions and concerns. Semester grades are finalized and become an official grade on the student's transcript at the end of each semester.
How can I find out what my student's homework is if s/he misses class?
Many teachers maintain their own website that lists the basics of what is occurring in their classes. You can find these websites in the Department Pages at http://olympia.osd.wednet.edu/departments. If you need more information, or want to contact your student's teachers directly, their emails and phone numbers are in the staff directory at OHS Staff Contact List.
Where can I find out information about ACT or SAT test dates?
Go to: www.collegeboard.org for SAT dates and registration information.
Go to: www.actstudent.org for ACT dates and registration information.
When do I apply for college?
Applications for four-year colleges are usually available starting in October of your senior year. Deadlines can be as early as October 15th (for early decision), so be sure to know the deadline and apply well in advance. We encourage students to get their applications done prior to Winter Break in December. Most college applications are online. You will usually get a quicker response to an online application and the schools are able to contact you more quickly with questions. Applications for two-year community and technical schools are also online and can be filed as early as December of your senior year. The earlier the community college application is turned in, the better chance to get into specific programs and classes in the Fall.
When do I apply for financial aid?
Students can apply for financial aid after October 1st. Colleges use the FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid) form which should be filed online and is available beginning October of your senior year at www.fafsa.ed.gov. Colleges use the information from that form to determine your student aid. You will usually get an offer of student aid at the same time you receive your acceptance from a school.
The single most important thing you must do to receive financial aid is to complete the FAFSA, the Free
Application for Federal Student Aid. Some colleges and scholarships require additional application forms,
but the FAFSA is your starting point for all financial aid.
Who should complete a FAFSA?
All students should complete the FAFSA, regardless of your income. Many colleges require students to submit a FAFSA to be considered for any type of scholarship or financial help, regardless of income.
Where can I get a FAFSA?
You can get a FAFSA form at your school’s counseling or career center, or find it at www.fafsa.ed.gov. Before completing a FAFSA, you can practice and get an early estimate of what you may receive through the FAFSA 4Caster at www.fafsa4caster.ed.gov.
How do I complete the FAFSA?
Both parents (or guardians) and students need to complete their sections of the form. The FAFSA can be complicated, so you should attend a help session at your school or at a local community college. Most colleges offer help through their Financial Aid offices as well. You can also find help and resources at www.fafsa.ed.gov.
When should I complete a FAFSA?
During the fall of your senior year, apply for your FSA ID.
What happens after I submit my FAFSA?
Shortly after you submit your FAFSA, you will receive a SAR (Student Aid Report). This SAR also goes to each of your colleges. The SAR contains a very important figure: your EFC (Estimated Family Contribution). This is the dollar amount the federal government believes your family should be able to contribute toward the cost of your college education. If you disagree with your EFC, you may submit a “Letter of Special Circumstance” to each of the colleges you’re applying to.
What if I’m not eligible for financial aid?
If you are not eligible or if your family cannot complete a FAFSA, you should explain your situation to staff at the Financial Aid office of each college you’re applying to. You may also apply to scholarships this way, though you may need extra help from your school’s guidance counselor if you do not have a FAFSA.
When do I hear how much financial aid I will receive?
After you have received an acceptance letter from a college, the Financial Aid office of that college will send you a financial aid package. It will usually be some combination of family contribution, grants, loans, work study and scholarships. Note that you do NOT have to accept this financial aid package. You should discuss it with your family and your school counselor before agreeing. If you do not think the financial aid package will work for you, contact the college Financial Aid staff and explain why.
What should I do now to be ready?
Here are three simple things you can do to be ready to apply for financial aid when you are a senior:
1. Attend a college or financial aid presentation with your family so that they understand how financial aid works
2. Complete the FAFSA 4Caster to get an early estimate of how much financial aid you might receive www.fafsa4caster.ed.gov
3. Apply for a FAFSA ID so that you and your parents/guardians will be ready to submit a FAFSA during senior
For more information about the FAFSA, visit the FAFSA Help link here.
How and when do I get scholarships?
Scholarships are available from a variety of sources. The best source will be the financial aid office of the college attended, so be sure to contact them early and pay attention to their deadlines.
A new resource, "THEWASHBOARD.ORG" is a free, web-based, nonprofit scholarship clearinghouse for Washington students seeking college scholarships.
Another great source is Olympia High School's Senior Notes. This lists all the local, state-wide and national scholarships we receive that are offered to current students. To request a scholarship list, contact Mrs. Dale in the Career Center. The current edition of Senior Notes is listed here: Senior Notes
A third source is websites. These scholarships draw from a larger pool of students and can be harder to get. For a list of scholarship search websites, go to: Scholarships
How do I get my student's name off the military recruiter lists?
By law, the district must provide military services with student information unless the parent/guardian requests otherwise in writing. The form to request this is available in the Student Rights and Responsibilities Handbook given to each student at the beginning of each school year. Usually the deadline to do this is mid-October; check with the high school for the exact date. Signed forms should be returned to the school and must be redone each year. For questions, call Cheryl Dale in the Career Center, (360)596-7034 or email at firstname.lastname@example.org.