(US 11) – Notes from the 11th grade coffee with Cory

Dear families,

According to the Upper School Head of School, Cory Izokaitis, the year is off to a great start!

During the coffee, we heard from several key faculty members who engage with our 11th graders throughout the year. Please see a brief summary below.

Upper School Counselor: Suzanne Ritter

Suzanne comes to us from MS, where she served as MS Counselor. Suzanne’s approach to working with students comes from her studies of Positive Psychology – what makes up a happy/meaningful life. She likes to focus on the whole child and wants to help the kids discover their purpose. Her focus with US students include:

    • working on improving schedules
    • stronger emphasis on mental health
    • growth vs the initial mindset

Wise words from Suzanne to 11th-grade parents: Enjoy the ride and don’t stress about the end game. Continue to communicate with your child and ask open-ended questions.

College Counseling team: Darnell Heywood, Jen Fitzpatrick, and Joan Young

  • The counselors apply a positive approach to the college process to create a positive mindset. We are fortunate to be in a place that 100% of the kids at CA find a college to go to. Don’t stress!
  • There are touchpoints in place throughout the year to prevent missed deadlines during the college process.
  • Junior year is an exploration period. Encourage your child to attend the visiting colleges that come to our school. College counseling has requested that each student attend 4-5 of these throughout the year. There are lots of colleges that visit. Get excited!
  • The Junior lounge is right outside of the college counseling office making it easy to access the counselors throughout the year.
  • The school registers students for the PSAT. They do not register students for the ACT or SAT. That is your family’s responsibility. Be sure to watch the registration deadlines.
  • Every child can benefit from some sort of test prep. Figure out what works for you. Group courses, online prep or individual tutoring are some options. During the 3rd quarter, all Juniors take a college course, run by college counseling, to help prepare them for the college process.
  • Juniors are allowed 2 excused days for college visits. Email Jennifer Lange.

Two important upcoming dates:

    • October 10th – PSAT. The kids will take the PSAT at school. College counseling will take care of enrollment. It is a half day for students so they may leave after the test.
    • November 12th, 7:00pm – Junior Parent College Night. More information coming.

Dean of Studies: Craig Dow

  • September 11th is technically the last day to add/drop classes. Students should see Mr. Dow.
  • Jen Conti, Director of Internships is based in the US library. She is a great resource for kids who would like to seek out internship opportunities between their Junior and Senior year. She can also help with resumes.

Wise words from Mr. Dow: Encourage your student to advocate for themselves as a learner. It is a lesson that will help them now and in the future.

US Dean of Students: Pascal Losambe

Housekeeping items:

  • Attendance – after 8am, you are late!  3 lates = 1 detention
  • Dress Code – the grace period is over. Students will now be held more accountable for the physical presentation. Please review what is and isn’t allowed in Upper School
  • Zero tolerance for drugs/alcohol/vape pens/Juul
  • Cell phone policy has been tweaked slightly. Students may still have/use cell phones except: in the dining hall, during advisory, and during activities period

Looking Ahead:

Saturday, October 13 – Homecoming

Thursday, October 25 and Friday, October 26  – Conferences. Students will have a 1/2 day off on Thursday and no school on Friday. Conference sign-ups at a later date.

Please let us know if you have any questions. 


Melanie DeAscentis & Jane Yakam

11th-grade Grade Parents

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