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Mansfield Independent School District

College Readiness

Grade 8

Each student will carefully complete a four-year high school academic plan in their Career Pathways Course. Each student will have an opportunity to explore their individual interests as they prepare for higher education and the world of work. Parents and students will be invited to a general information session in the spring. It is strongly recommended that each student carefully read the course selection guide and carefully choose courses for high school. Look over specific college catalogs and publications that give college profiles.

Grade 9

Goals and objectives that were chosen in the eighth grade will be re-evaluated during the ninth grade parent conference. Careful consideration should be given to reviewing the four-year graduation plan with your high school counselor and parents. Students should continue exploring their interests in Career Cruising. Each high school has a Go Center available to further research colleges. Students should also review college catalogs and publications which give college profiles. Attend the MISD College and Career Night in the fall. Begin keeping in your portfolio report cards, test scores, honors, school activities, community activities, and work experience. You may also want to keep samples of your major school projects, papers, etc. Know NCAA (National Collegiate Athletic Association) requirements if you want to play sports in college. Take courses that are challenging and work to your full potential. Be a self-advocate, attend tutorials and do not let yourself fall behind in your classes. Remember, to qualify for access to dual credit courses you must have an overall grade point average of at least an 80.

Grade 10

Review the four-year graduation plan. Take courses that are challenging and continue working to your full potential. Take the Preliminary SAT (PSAT) which is offered only once per year in October as practice for the PSAT/NMSQT that juniors take for scholarship consideration. Analyze the PSAT results and establish personal goals in January. Continue to review college publications. Begin to visit colleges in the summer, especially if you are interested in a highly selective college. Study to make your grades representative of your abilities. Continue adding to your portfolio.

Grade 11

Review the graduation plan and narrow college choices. Confer with parent(s) and the counselor to decide on courses for the senior year and to discuss post-graduation plans. Take challenging courses. Attend the MISD College and Career Night in the fall and talk to the college personnel. Take the PSAT offered only once per year in October. Apply for any scholarships that your parents' employers may provide and any scholarships that are available to junior competition. Take the SAT and/or ACT in the late spring. Visit colleges in the summer. Send for college information and applications. Make grades representative of your ability. Continue adding to your portfolio.

Grade 12

Finalize college choices and send letters/applications to the colleges of your choice. Check with the counseling center on your campus, the Internet and the catalog from the college(s) of your choice to apply for any scholarships for which you may qualify. Confer with your counselor in early fall. Attend the MISD College and Career Night in the fall with your parent(s) and plan to attend the Financial Aid Seminar. Take the SAT and/or ACT and necessary achievement tests in October or November. Send regular decision applications in the fall semester (preferably by December 1st). Send in housing applications in early fall, especially to colleges that are highly competitive for dorm space. Analyze SAT and ACT test results in December. Send the Financial Aid applications (FAFSA) in January. Continue adding to your portfolio.

Financial Aid: The Free Application for Federal Student Assistance (FAFSA) is not available until December. The information for the application is based on income tax returns. Through this application, eligibility is determined for grants, loans, work-study programs, and some scholarships. You may apply online at www.fafsa.ed.gov . If you require a paper copy, they will be made available in the counseling center on your high school campus. MISD College and Career Night includes a Financial Aid Seminar for general information.

Scholarships: The best resource for scholarship information is directly from the financial aid office at the college(s) you wish to attend. The counseling center on your high school campus will also have information about certain scholarships. Most scholarship opportunities are now posted online, allowing student’s the opportunity to do local and national scholarship searches on their own.

Texas Grant: The purpose of the Texas Grant is to provide grant money to enable well-prepared, eligible students to attend public and private colleges and universities in Texas. You can apply if you are a Texas resident, have completed the Recommended or Distinguished Achievement High School Program, and have financial need. The awards may be used at a Texas college or unitersity, both public and private. Awards to students attending Texas private colleges and universities are based on public university amounts. To apply, first complete the FAFSA form. You will then work with the fnancial aid office at the college or university you plan to attend to determine if you are eligible.

Common Application: Texas offers a common application for all public universities. This application may be obtained from the counseling center on your high school campus or online at www.applytexas.org


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