May 3rd Newsletter

To Our Students ..

Dear TCM Families,

During this challenging time, we at The College Map are mindful of the blessing of being a part of a community that includes your children. We hope this finds you and them well. In order to do our part to keep them healthy and safe, and per our company policy, The College Map will follow Orange County Public Schools’s protocol. Currently, our office will be closed throughout the end of the school year.

For now, all college planning appointments will be conducted via telephone and/or an online platform that your child’s TCM counselor will convey to you. Each and every college planning module is designed to be implemented virtually; we have had uncompromised success with our students who reside out-of-state. We endeavor to keep your student on track with his/her college planning journey.

We will continue to communicate with you regarding the status of the office reopening, some to-do’s your son/daughter can work on during his/her extended period of time at home, and our test prep expectations if your child is currently enrolled in our test prep program.

As always, we are honored to have your family a part of ours. Please know that we are only a phone call away.

Julie Mitchell (407-429-9994)
Maria Guthrie (407-765-3186)


Class of 2020 Message from BHS

Principal Dusty Johns’ message to the Class of 2020 and end of year plans

Click here for the YouTube Video


Rising Senior Essay Workshop

RISING SENIOR (CLASS OF 2021) ESSAY WORKSHOP

(for college planning students, only)

We are holding two essay workshops this month (May 23rd and May 30th); please register for one of the dates and time slots (see below). In order to accommodate the students in a safe manner at The College Map, we are capping the enrollment of each session.

Students are required to bring a fully charged laptop or iPad with them to a session. We will be utilizing Google docs as our essay writing platform throughout the entire process.

To register for an essay workshop session, please email Julie Mitchell at juliemitchell@thecollegemap.com with your preferred date and time slot.

Saturday, May 23rd 9:00-10:30 a.m.
Saturday, May 23rd 10:30-noon

Saturday, May 30th 9:00-10:30 a.m.
Saturday, May 30th 10:30-noon


Diagnostic Testing for Class of 2022

Class of 2022

Please be on the lookout this coming week for an email regarding your diagnostic date confirmation as well as test date information and instructions.


Test Prep Information

Our test prep program will conclude this cycle with the calendar that has been in place all year. We will continue to deliver on the Zoom platform. Students must be registered to attend a class through Acuity so that they can be sent a Zoom invitation. Please note that we will continue to use the test prep books that you purchased for online classes.


To Go or Not To Go: That is the Question

How to talk about starting college amid COVID-19
Julie Lythcott-Haims
April 25, 2020

Click here for the full article.


Virtual College Tours & Information

Below is a great link to over 900 colleges/universities with links to virtual tours and unique features of each school all in one place. This is a great one-stop shop for our students, specifically our juniors who may not be able to visit colleges in person in the coming months and to seniors still trying to make a decision.

Please click HERE


AP Exam Tools & Information

About This Year’s AP Exams

For the 2019–20 exam administration only, students can take a 45-minute online free-response exam at home. Educator-led development committees have already selected the exam questions that will be administered.

To be fair to all students, some of whom have lost more instructional time than others, the exam will only include topics and skills most AP teachers and students have already covered in class by early March.

Please make sure to be in communication with all of your AP teachers if you have any questions. Do not wait until the day of testing to reach out!

Please follow this link for detailed information!

AP Exam Schedule

AP Online Classes & Review Sessions

Taking the AP Exams


Foreign Language Online Resource

Here is a great resource for students struggling with foreign languages online.

A message from Language Bird

How does a “high school resume” survive Covid-19?

What can we do to prepare students for college admissions in a time of uncertainty?

Many parents and students are asking, “How does a “high school resume” survive Covid-19? What can we do and how should we prepare for college admissions in a time of uncertainty?”

After two decades of working with high school students helping them get into top colleges, I have some tips:

  1. Keep your grades up and finish your high school year strong! GPA is always most important for college admissions. It’s the biggest indicator as to how academically successful you will be in college.

Disappointed your school grades may be turned to pass/fail this semester? You worked so hard to get high grades! Good news is your LanguageBird course transcript will be issued and your grades in our courses for credit will be counted in your GPA for college admissions.

  1. Do something with your time to show your interests and passions. Colleges are going to ask what you did during school closures and many summer programs and plans have been cancelled.

Extracurricular activities and leadership positions halted due to Covid-19 but that doesn’t mean you can’t stay active and use your time wisely. Join a free LanguageBird Chirp Room Chat once a week, take some conversational lessons, or enroll in a course for credit to get ahead or try a language you’ve always wanted to study. Summer trip abroad cancelled? Get immersed in the language and culture from home with our native speaking instructors and be ready for your next trip!

  1. If you have prepared for the SAT or ACT, take it when it is offered. You can decide later to submit the scores or not. If you do well, it will be an extra “star” on your application.
  2. Be in contact with your school counselor and teachers. They will write your letters of recommendation. Get informed about how to prepare for fall.

Tips for Online Distance Learning

Be positive.

A positive attitude about learning is the best gift you can give yourself. Everything you learn, whether it’s your most favorite or least favorite subject, will help you grow as a person.

Get organized—and stay organized.

Creating an orderly learning space to do schoolwork will put you ahead of the game. Be sure you have room for your books, computer, pens, paper, and other supplies. Label folders to hold papers and notes for each subject. Go ahead and create electronic folders for each class on your computer and in your email program. If your virtual school provides an online planner, use it to schedule your personal appointments and create your “to do” list, with items ranked in order of urgency.

Establish a routine.

While online school and blended learning school do give you a more flexible schedule, having a routine will help keep you on track with your schoolwork. It’s a good idea to find out when your teachers have their office hours, so you can arrange your schedule to overlap with when they are available. Naturally, you can vary your schedule when needed.

Set personal goals.

To make great things happen in your life, it helps to set goals for yourself. Think about what you’d like to accomplish, both short-term and long-term. Is there a class you want to ace this semester? Maybe you want to get a certain grade point average or achieve a certain score on the SAT exams. Admission to a specific college might also be on your list. Be sure to put your goals in writing and post the list where you’ll see it often.

Make the most of your resources.

As an online student or blended learning student, you have many helpful resources available. Naturally, your texts, the library, online instructional tools, and trusted websites come to mind. But don’t forget the many human resources you can use: parents, teachers, school counselors, and principals are great sources of information. A good rule of thumb is if you’ve been looking for an answer for more than five minutes, reach out for help!

Start on track and stay on track.

It’s always better to be ahead than to be struggling at the last minute! Break down big projects into small, manageable parts—and give each one a deadline. Don’t drag your feet—make yourself do things on time, and you’ll be better off in the long run.

Limit your time online.

That sounds funny coming from someone who works at an online school, doesn’t it? But we all get sucked into the trap of taking a “short break” from our important task to go see what’s happening on Facebook or Twitter. The next thing you know, that five-minute break has turned into an hour! Breaks are a good thing, but it’s important to limit your “digital distractions” and keep yourself on task by setting a time limit and sticking to it. Set a timer to keep yourself honest!

Learn to deal with setbacks.

Everyone has them! Every person who succeeds has had to struggle to get there. When you get a bad grade, have an argument with a friend, or experience other frustrations, realize that this is a learning experience. Talk to someone to get another point of view—you could be worried about something that’s pretty small in the long run. To move forward, you must take responsibility for what you’ve done (or not done) and decide to change your behavior in the future. Making a plan for achieving greater success in the future will help you build confidence, too!


BRIGHT FUTURES Reminder

Seniors, please make sure you submit a completed Florida Financial Aid Application (FFAA) in order to be considered for State Scholarship & Grant Programs. Seniors, please Create a Student Account. After logging into your account, you may proceed to complete the FFAA. Even IF you are not attending an in-state Florida school, we highly recommend every senior complete their Bright Futures application. Florida graduates have two years to enact their scholarship money.

The Bright Futures link can answer all of your questions:

By |2020-05-07T11:20:06-04:00May 3rd, 2020|Uncategorized|0 Comments