Applying to College
Applying to college requires filling out a lot of papers. This can be tedious, but it is crucial that you take your time to do it correctly and thoughtfully.
Some colleges have their own, specialized applications -- you will be able to print one off their website or have one sent to you. However, many colleges use a "common application," meaning you can fill out one application and use it at multiple colleges. Obviously, this saves time.
APPLY TEXAS APPLICATION
If you plan to attend a school in Texas, you can fill out the Apply Texas Application online. You will need to create a username and password (one you can remember) in order to log in and update your application.
Application deadlines vary for every college, so you should check college websites to be sure you get your application in on time. Many schools have two deadlines: one for early decision admission and one for regular admission.
For more information on applying to college, visit www.collegebasics.com
Releasing Students from School
To get a pass to be released from school, a parent (or legal guardian) must send a note with the student OR contact the attendance office by calling, faxing, or visiting in person. Students must always sign out in the front office when leaving, and sign back in immediately upon returning to campus.
Students Absent from School
A written note from a parent (or legal guardian) is required within 3 school days of the student's return to school. This note should be taken to the Attendance office. The note needs to include the following information:
For absences exceeding 5 consecutive days, a note from a doctor is required OR written approval from the student's assistant principal must be obtained.
Students Becoming Ill at School
A student who feels sick during the school day should, with his/her teacher's permission, report to the school nurse. The nurse will determine whether or not the student should be sent home and will notify the parent or legal guardian.
In order to receive credit in a class, a student must be present at least 90% of the days in each semester. If excessive absences are due to extenuating circumstances, a student or parent can submit an Attendance Committee Review Form to the student's assistant principal. The Committee will consider each case individually to determine whether or not credit can be awarded.
Phone Master Calling System
A computerized "autocaller" will call home in the evenings if a student has missed one or more class periods during the school day. If absences have been marked in error, or if you have questions regarding this call, please call the attendance office to clarify the attendance record.
BISD Counselor's Corner
College visits for junior and senior students:
Junior and senior students are allowed 2 absences for college visits per year. Appropriate procedures must be followed. A student must submit to the appropriate assistant principal, 7 days prior to the visit, a form requesting a college visit. In order for the student to be approved to go on a college visit, the student must meet the following criteria.
The student must provide proof of the college visit to the assistant principal within 2 school days following the college visit. Acceptable documentation of the college visit shall be verification of the visit on college letterhead. Failure to provide this signed form and proof of the college visit will result in the absence being marked as unexcused. It is the student's responsibility to make up assignments.
At a time when FAFSA® workshops have been canceled and in-person assistance has been suspended because of covid-19, the need for virtual assistance is greater than ever. College Board has teamed up with Benefits Data Trust, a nonprofit partner, to offer a FAFSA chatbot to assist students nationwide. The chatbot, which is available by text message, addresses common barriers to completing the FAFSA, such as troubleshooting the FSA ID, deciding whose income to report, and more. The chatbot, which is available 24/7, answers students’ questions with guidance that is digestible and easy to understand.
Through August, all students can access the chatbot by texting "2020" to 267-578-3373. Students can find out more about the service and how to opt in at getfafsahelp.org/chatbot.
The key resource for both scholarships and financial aid is the college (or university or technical school) you hope to attend. Contact a college admissions counselor or financial aid counselor at your school(s) of interest for the most accurate, up-to-date information.
Financial aid typically comes in the form of grants (free money) or loans (money that will eventually need to be paid back).
Key to being eligible for financial aid is filling out the Free Application for Student Aid, more commonly known as FAFSA. The FAFSA can be filled out beginning in October of a student's senior year --
Prior to filling out FAFSA, both parent(s) and student need to apply for a PIN # to aid in the application process. This can be done in the fall of the senior year.
For more information on how to pay for college, visit
FINANCIAL AID FOR UNDOCUMENTED STUDENTS
Opportunities for financial aid are also available to undocumented students.
FinAid -- The Smart Student Guide to Financial Aid has a section to help answer questions undocumented students may have as they search for financial support for college. Visit www.finaid.org/otheraid/undocumented.phtml
Another resource is the Hispanic Scholarship Fund: www.hsf.net
Life after high school
We know you are all dreaming of the day you are out of high school, but have you thought about what you will DO when you no longer have the school bell to count the hours of your day? A quality life includes a satisfying career. Different careers require various levels of training. This training can come from several places:
Community Colleges / Technical Colleges – These two-year schools can provide quality, lower-cost education. They award Associate degrees or certification for specific careers. Some students use 2-year colleges as a stepping-stone to a 4-year college.
Colleges / Universities – Many careers require a Bachelor’s degree (4 years). Some careers require further education, such as a Master’s degree or a Ph.D.
Military – each branch of the armed forces offers training and education in many fields. Additionally, ROTC programs may be affiliated with a 4-year college. In exchange for tuition and expenses, you agree to serve for a certain period of time after graduation.