Freshman orientation eases transition

Incoming freshmen and their parents learn about CHS from counselors and PLUS members


Sierra Gomperts

Various clubs and organizations from CHS set up booths during the freshman orientation. The incoming students have a chance to walk around campus and meet their counselors before the start of the semester.

With April and the second semester well underway, Carlsbad High now prepares for the close of the 2013-14 school year; first in mind is the class of 2017, who must be informed of CHS’s ways.  On March 24 and 25, clubs presented social and extracurricular components of high school to incoming freshmen and their parents, while the guidance counselors held orientations, in which they discussed graduation requirements, tutoring and course registration.

“My son is a senior now, and my daughter is starting as a freshman. I went to the orientation again to find out the difference,” parent Stephanie Koch said. “Now you do it online through Aeries. I talked to other mothers and people who had problems because they couldn’t find the right place on Aeries, but I think in the end, that is where the future is; everything is going to be online–it streamlines the process very well.”

While registering for classes previously required a single course selection sheet, now, students must turn in the signed paper and input class requests on Aeries. The directions provided by counselors on the use and navigation of Aeries assuaged parents worries about the new system. One of the main issues was how to ensure the Aeries ID was for Carlsbad High–not a different school. Along with Aeries, the presentations emphasized School Loop.

“School Loop has to be your friend; pull School Loop up everyday,” counselor Mrs. Bentley said. “You can contact teachers through School Loop, there’s an academic monitoring sheet on School Loop, our guidance link is on School Loop–the only thing not on School Loop is Round Table Tutoring after school.”

Counselors introduced parents to Naviance and encouraged students to keep in mind their long-term plan by aiming for a certain and maintaining clear goals throughout high school. Naviance also helps to prepare for college and financial aid.

“It is a good tool for kids to control their own progress, and it improves communication,” Koch said.

In addition, in each classroom, a PLUS member or Royal Lancer spoke about his or her personal experience at high school. They shared tips for staying ahead in class and preventing homework procrastination. Parents and incoming freshmen could also ask questions about information not covered in the counselor’s presentation; many queried on the dress code, bell schedule, tardies and short days.

“We appreciate it when there is someone there who has had the experience first-hand,” Koch said. “I think the parents really enjoyed and appreciated the presentation, too.”