The ACS High School Counseling department addresses the academic, social, emotional, and personal needs of all students in a safe and nurturing environment. Our services include academic counseling, social/emotional counseling, college counseling, and learning support. Taken together, our programs help students explore their identities and meet their potential, both as individuals and as co-builders of the ACS community.
Counselors work closely with students to set academic goals, choose individual courses, explore potential career interests, and select the academic path most aligned with their long-term plans. We can help direct students to appropriate classes and interesting co-curricular activities, with the aim of enhancing personal development and pursuing excellence as well as improving their standing for university admittance.
The counseling team helps students cultivate habits and dispositions that foster success in the classroom. We guide students with tips on time management, goal setting, study skills, sustaining concentration, and staying motivated and resilient in the face of obstacles and disappointments. Our work with students prepares them to become independent learners ready to thrive at university and in their adult lives.
The counseling team remains available for students if they wish to discuss social and emotional concerns, or when they feel the need to seek assistance with a challenge of any sort. We are here to listen and with a combination of empathy and experience, we can help students target challenging behaviors, work on social development, build healthy relationships, sort through, and re-examine their values and goals to help them discover who they want to be. Our goal is to enhance the students’ experience throughout their formative years and support them in their process of finding their sense of personal identity and overcoming their personal challenges.
The College Counseling office supports students as they develop a plan that meets their individual goals for life after ACS. This may involve attending a university or college, taking a gap year, studying in a foundational program, or choosing another path. We encourage students and parents to explore all the options and make informed decisions based on what is best for the student. We believe that the “best program/university” is defined by how well it fits a student’s needs.
We begin the college counseling process in Grade 9 and proceed gradually with interactive sessions and games that introduce students to the basics of university vocabulary and plant the seeds of longer-terms planning with career inventories and reflections on global citizenship and all that is available to those who pursue their dreams with passion and integrity. In Grades 11 and 12, we begin more practical discussions about targeting specific universities, preparing for standardized tests, writing personal statements, and obtaining letters of recommendation. We remain in close contact with students throughout the applications process in Grade 12, providing help finalizing applications, filling out financial aid forms, submitting visa paperwork, and preparing for the transition to university. Finally, alumni of ACS are always encouraged to reach out if they need assistance in transferring or reapplying to universities.
The Learning Support program is designed to support students with specific learning needs by providing assistance that helps students develop more effective study habits, discover learning styles that suit them best, and improve their capacity with time management and organization. ACS support services are individualized, and our learning support team collaborates closely with teachers and families to help students reach their potential. We provide opportunities for one-on-one and small group support, and, when necessary, we provide accommodations such as extra time and modified settings for assessments.
Each Co-Curricular Activities Season offers a wide range of clubs to our high school students. These clubs are student-driven and focus on providing the students an extracurricular opportunity through the arts, technology, and fitness. In addition to the club offerings, high school students are eligible to participate in the ACS Athletics and Activities program. Please refer to the Athletics and Activities section for more information about the competitive team and individual sport program. Club offerings vary throughout the year and include the following:
- Ultimate Frisbee
- Track & Field
- Model United Nations
- Speech & Debate
- National Honors Society
- Nour International
- HS Newspaper
- Python Coding Club
- Compassion Medical Club
- Amnesty International Group
- Solar Bottle Club
- ACS for Animals
- Jazz Appreciation Club
- Development Club
- Chess Club
- SETA Club
- Writers' Workshop
Please click here to view/download the High School Student Handbook 2021-22.