Parents of the HS Class of 2024

Does your high school have a club for kids with health sciences interests? My D26 came home last Friday after they had club day at her school. She has joined a couple and said how she wishes there was a focus on health sciences. I told her she should start one. The students were told if they have an interest in starting a club they just need to find a teacher willing to be the sponsor. She is hesitant. Both DH and I are medical and she wants to go into nursing and we have some fun ideas of what she could do but wondering if your kids’ schools have a club like this and if so, what activities do they do? I was thinking she could see if a science teacher will sponsor and they could have guest speakers (nurses, doctors, NPs, PAs, dentists), visit some local medical facilities, talk to people who have volunteered in Doctors Without Borders, Project Smile, etc…lots of fun ideas.

Our school has a Red Cross Club and the school nurse is the advisor. Your ideas all sound great so maybe they could be under the umbrella of a Red Cross club? Maybe that would help with resources? I think it’s great she started her own club! My son started one his freshman year and he has learned many skills along the way as things of course don’t always go smoothly! So great life experience! Good luck to her:)

Our school does not rank either and like your kids most of the kids here don’t discuss GPA and stuff (this is what S24 says to me). They may discuss how hard a test was or if they are good with the test score or not but not more details than that.

When we were growing up we had class ranks including in college (not in US) and so it took some time to get the concept but now I am glad they don’t rank. It is very stressful as it is in high school and ranking would add additional stress.

So it is not unusual for kids not to discuss ranks and GPA’s. We use te school profile for the last 2 to 3 years to see in general how s24 is doing in compared to other kids can help you see where he stands to some extent not exact rank but top 25% VS below and so on.

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My son’s school ranks the students and I hate it. Makes it so competitive and everyone knows each other’s rank because these kids constantly ask each other and everyone talks. There are kids who are taking 6-7 AP classes this year - some of these kids are NOT taking a foreign language, art, band or DECA in hopes of maximizing their gpa since AP classes provide the highest boost (A+ is equivalent to a 5.0 vs. A+ in honors is 4.66 vs. A+ in regular is 4.33). My son plans to take band and a foreign language until he graduates so it’s not possible for him to take 7 AP classes at once (which he wouldn’t want to take anyway). This may impact his ranking but I told him to take the classes he loves (my son really enjoys music) and not to worry about his ranking.

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My D’s HS published quarterly honor rolls in rank order! They finally did away with that two years after she graduated.

Our large HS of 2,400 students doesn’t publish rankings. In the past, they said they would share it with colleges if they asked. What we do have is serious grade deflation. When we looked at colleges for my older kids on Naviance, our HS GPAs (100 scale) we’re about 2% lower than the admitted GPAs at each school. The college admissions people told us they know which HSs inflate and deflate grades so they compensate. I’m sure the same is true with rankings

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Our school does not formally rank but we can ask our counselor what their ranking is.

My daughter is currently #3 in her class and her best friends are #4, 5 and 10. The good news is although all of them are competitive, they also genuinely support each other, are collaborative, and none are cut throat. They dont believe in zero sum game outcomes. Im not sure if it’s a generational thing or just the school that we’re in.

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@DroidsLookingFor that is a good question! Tufts is ideal access: separate, contained campus with quick, easy public transportation to Boston. Vassar was OK because there is a train to NYC. I think public transportation is important, and ideally not more than two hours away. Close enough to go into the city at least once or twice per semester to enjoy museums, theater, concerts. But who knows? She has changed her mind a few times. After reading the “Schools you can’t get to” thread I’m more inclined to focus on schools with a relatively easy ability to get home, too. I know there will be trade offs.

Gotcha, and why I asked. Some might say that e.g. Dartmouth is accessible to/from Boston (by bus), but perhaps not in the way you or your daughter are looking for.

For my S I am looking for some college counseling. I would appreciate your help. To start with any free or low-cost counseling will help me to understand where my S stands

No rankings at our school either - they did away with it about 10 years ago. Each year there is a Valedictorian and Salutatorian and the top 10% of NHS is recognized but that is it. For colleges, they do have a graph which shows how many kids fall into various GPA ranges (i.e. 4.4+, 4.0-4.39). The chart really shows how much grade inflation goes on today as around 35% of most classes have a weighted gpa of 4.0 or better.

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Ha, our school too, they dont publish the non weighted gpa but I do feel better that our school has almost no one with all As, can tell by the weighted GPAs not being equivalent to a weighted A in all classes.

Ours doesn’t have rankings either. The grades are NOT inflated. Usually the kids who ends up being the equivalent or V or S has a B+ or two, mostly A’s and advanced classes. Although they provide that information, I think it hurts our kids as things are so inflated across the board. I think I read something like 30% of kids in the US have perfect GPA’s. IMO, that makes the transition to college harder.

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Same with us. They only publish weighted (at the end of junior year) and that is based on the inclusion of APs (not available until junior year) which puts a lot of kids over a 4.0 (given that APs are worth 5).

Interesting (and how it should be, IMO). At our school a single A- would put you out of the running.

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I agree. IF it’s not challenging enough, then students don’t learn to dig deep to do well. Yes, I think in some classes it’s going to be very very difficult to get an A. I remember my oldest in Freshman English ( B+ first semester). Kid went on to do very well in English. But without that pause, the stretch would not have been there.
My kid wasn’t V or S, and didn’t care at all about that and neither did the teachers. It was all about getting prepared for college and doing your best.

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It really does show how the school profiles are so important. Each school compares to itself and colleges do know what a GPA means for an individual school.

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Yep. Colleges have years of data for kids specifically from your kid’s HS, and that data includes classes taken.

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Fascinating - if they name a Valedictorian and Salutatorian than they ARE ranking (at least #1 and 2).

I feel that’s much worse than what I’ve seen other schools do:
Refuse to name V+S, but only show the “decile” of a student.

This way, the top students have that information readily available to them - and it’s not as if there are huge surprises, who the top students are. On the other hand, those high-achieving students won’t be pushed into a cut-throat competition for decimal points to gain the coveted V/S spot.

Our school traditionally has done top 1%, 3%, and 10% by weighted gpa, but 2 years ago they had a few kids take online APs and turn them in spring semester to get moved up. The following fall they announced they would not take online APs anymore, and some parents went nuts because their kid had taken a bunch over the summer. They now just have people selected to give a speech.