COLLEGE CALENDAR GUIDE
9th Grade: Help Your Child Prepare for College
Your child's grades appear on official transcripts starting this year, so if you haven't already started doing so, it's time to take stock.
If your child has particularly strong academic interests, encourage them, but don't lose focus on strengthening areas of weakness that can't be ignored, such as English or algebra.
10th Grade: Help Your Child Prepare for College
Tenth grade is a banner year for most kids. For the most part, the classes your child takes this year will determine the courses your child will be qualified to take in grades 11 and 12.
In terms of preparing for college, it's an important time, since AP and honors classes require prerequisites that your child will need to be fulfilling this year and next. You and your child should have an open discussion and strategically map out classes together.
Sophomore year also marks the beginning of standardized testing. This year, students can take a practice PSAT/NMSQT — a preparatory step for the PSAT/NMSQT. For students planning on taking the ACT, the PLAN assessment is also administered in their sophomore year. If it hasn't already started, it's buckle-down time!
11th Grade: Help Your Child Prepare for College
This year the college search process really gets going. The combined exploration of the past two years along with your child's testing should help refine the list of colleges that you and your child have been working on. Poor grades will not be as easily forgiven as they were in previous years, and colleges will look for commitment and accomplishment outside of the classroom.
Just as you've been doing all along, help your child stay on top of things and continue to provide support and encouragement -- and constructive criticism, if needed.
12th Grade: Help Your Child Prepare for College
Phew! Once your child reaches senior year, the college search kicks up a notch and will sometimes feel like a full-time job — with all of the toil, tedium, and triumphs that come with it. But this is the home stretch for both you and your future college graduate. It might be a lot of work, but it's a labor of love!