As always, feel free to contact the Guidance Staff directly!
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How will I know who my child’s guidance counselor is?
Your child will be assigned to a guidance counselor as a freshman and will remain with that counselor through graduation. To determine which counselor your child is paired with, refer to the Guidance Staff section of this website.
How many terms and semesters are there in a school year?
There are 4 terms and 2 semesters each school year. The dates for the 2013 - 2014 school year are:
Semester I: August 27 through January 16
Term 1: August 27 through November 1
Term 2: November 4 through January 16
Semester II: January 21 through June 16*
Term 3: January 21 through March 28
Term 4: March 31 through June 16*
*subject to change pending snow days
How often are report cards and progress reports distributed?
What are the attendance and absenteeism policies at AHS?
The faculty and administration of Ashland High School are committed to offering a quality education to their students. School attendance is crucial to learning and will be closely monitored. Classroom participation and student/teacher interaction are fundamentally important reasons for good school attendance. Therefore, the following policies have been adopted to maximize student attendance in school and in class:
Some missed classes are for legitimate reasons and do not count in calculating the maximum limit. Family vacations during school time are not excused absences. The following circumstances are considered legitimate:
Absence: Calling In
Parents/guardians must call the school (508-881-0177) as soon as possible to register with the office the reason for the student's absence. In the event a parent/guardian does not notify the office by the close of school the following day, the student will automatically be deemed truant and will take the appropriate consequences for truancy. A call must be made within this time frame for each day of absence. The responsibility for this procedure is that of the parent/guardian and the student. No exceptions will be made to this rule.
Attendance to Class: Class Skips
Dismissals from School
Parents must sign out a student in the Main Office upon departure. No student will be dismissed without a parent or guardian’s signature unless that student is a senior and is exercising his or her senior privilege to be dismissed during a last-period study. Those seniors exercising this privilege must file the appropriate documentation, and must sign out in the Main Office. Dismissals for medical reasons must be cleared through the nurse who will contact a parent or guardian.
What athletic opportunities does AHS offer?
AHS offers multiple sports during the fall, winter and spring seasons, available to all students. Refer to the Athletics website for a complete list of teams and coaches. Prior to each season, a meeting will be held for all student athletes who intend to try out for a team that season. The coaches will provide information about tryout dates and other relevant details for the upcoming season. An athletic form and physical form, along with the appropriate sport fee, must be submitted to the Athletic office prior to a student being allowed to participate in tryouts.
What standardized tests will be required during high school?
In addition to the required MCAS tests taken during high school, there are several college admission tests recommended by the guidance department including the PSATs, SATs and ACT exams. Please refer to College Admissions Tests for more detailed information.
How important is it to be involved in extracurricular activities, such as clubs, sports, and volunteer projects?
Counselors recommend that all students participate in one or more extracurricular activity while in high school to become a well-rounded member of society. Students who are involved in activities feel more connected to the school. Also, colleges and scholarship committees frequently request information on extracurricular participation and demonstrated leadership while in high school.
What Student Governance programs are available for students to participate in?
Each class at Ashland High School elects a president, vice president, secretary, historian, and treasurer to provide leadership and organization, and establish lines of communication among the student body, student council, school council and the administration. It is the responsibility of the officers to address the needs of the classes and to inform the classes about Student Council activities.
The Student Council is the umbrella under which all the other clubs and student organizations at AHS function. Although membership is by election, the council is an "open" council. This means all interested students wishing to participate as council members can join the ranks by attending at least three meetings in a row and volunteering to actively participate in at least three projects of the council (including dances, homecoming, spirit week, community service projects, etc.). The council participates in statewide conferences and has interest in the national organizations of councils. At AHS, this council is responsible for the student activities calendar and is a support to all clubs and activities. Members are leaders serving as role models to all students and are active participants in meetings and leadership building programs.
Student Advisory Council to the School Committee
Purpose: The members of the Advisory Council to the School Committee consider matters of student interest that come before the School Committee. They present their collective perspectives as non-voting members to the School Committee. The Advisory Council consists of five elected students.
Are there Community Service requirements for graduation?
Yes, community service is a requirement for student graduation from Ashland High School. Students must complete a minimum of 25 hours of unpaid service to the community by the first day of senior year. All community service must be completed and all paper work submitted to be eligible for senior privileges. For tracking purposes, we'd appreciate it if this requirement were met by the end of the student’s junior year, but it must be completed by the first day of senior year.
How is the Honor Roll determined at AHS?
An Honor Roll based on three categories of scholastic achievement is published at the end of each marking period. All subjects are treated equally.
Do the students have Mid-Year and Final Examinations?
All students are required to take mid-term exams at the end of the first semester in January and final exams at the end of the year in June. Incomplete grades must be turned into the guidance department no later than two weeks after report cards have been issued. The administration will grant extensions, if needed, due to extenuating circumstances.
What are the requirements for National Honor Society at AHS?
Students who have achieved an exact cumulative GPA 3.2 or higher over their freshman and sophomore years and who are exemplary in the areas of character, leadership and service are eligible for induction into the Socios Chapter of the National Honor Society in November of their junior year. If students meet the academic requirement, they are then eligible for consideration on the basis of community service, leadership, and character. Please see the NHS website for more information.
What are the course levels and how are placement decisions made at AHS?
All placements are designed to provide maximum intellectual challenge for each student. The school makes placement decisions on the basis of aptitude as determined by standardized testing, past academic performance, and teacher recommendations. Placement assumes that ability will allow success, but normal student effort is also assumed; low grades are not automatically a basis for dropping levels. It is also assumed that students and teachers will anticipate upward movements in level placements based on intellectual growth over years of schooling. Placement levels may vary in different subject areas, and trial attempts at upward placement are encouraged. All course levels are designed to challenge students, promote critical thought, and provide opportunities to problem solve. The professional staff at Ashland High School is committed to the following: all students, upon graduation, will be expected to demonstrate they can synthesize, organize, and apply knowledge to complex and real life situations, and are fully prepared for post secondary education and/or work.
Course levels are designated as follows:
Course Level Placement
Students will be placed in core class levels based on their performance the previous year in the same discipline, as recommended by teachers, counselors, and department chairs. As a general principle, a grade of 85 the previous year will determine a student’s eligibility for Honors and Advanced Placement classes. Please speak with your guidance counselor if you have questions regarding a placement decision or wish to discuss an override.
I have heard about Naviance. What is it and when will we be able to access the system?
Naviance Family Connection is a web-based guidance resource for students to use to help in making decisions about colleges and careers. Juniors and seniors can research colleges, compare GPA, SAT scores, and other statistics to actual historical data from AHS. All students can build a resume, take a career interest inventory, view the schedule of college rep visits, and much more.
All students will now receive a registration code freshman year. Once they successfully register for the first time, the user name is an email address and the password is one the students choose themselves. For more information, refer to our Naviance webpage.
Whom can I contact for more information?
Our Guidance Staff is always available to help. Also refer to our "Who to Contact" list to find the best person to reach out to in other AHS departments. We look forward to working with you!