Counseling Office Frequently Asked Questions

  • How long do I have to drop a course without penalty?

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    Schedule changes must be made within the first 2 weeks (10 school days) of the term to avoid a drop "F," which is a permanent grade on the transcript. After that time, the student will receive a drop F grade from the class they drop—this is a strict deadline. Exceptions will only be made for teacher initiated/approved level changes within the same subject area. It is important to note that although there is a two week drop deadline, there really is only a five day period in which to add classes (all classes whether academic or elective). Therefore, for those wishing to add a new class, they must get this done during the first five days of the term. Dropping a class during the second week typically applies to upper grade levels (11th and 12th) who have the flexibility to pickup an Aide position or an Off-campus (must be period one or four).

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  • When should I repeat a course?

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    If a student receives a “D” in a course that requires a “C” or better as a prerequisite to advance to the next level (e.g. “C” or better in Algebra 1), the semesters must be repeated in our district credit recovery or A-G recovery program, or during the school year, or in an approved concurrent program. Since a "C-" is the minimum grade acceptable in college preparatory courses IF going directly to a four year university, a “D” grade in any such course must be repeated in our district A-G recovery program, during the school year, or in an approved concurrent program.

    Update: Summer Session of Credit Recovery is only offered to students who have failed a class. All other repeats (D's) must take place during the school year or in the district A-G Recovery program (fall or spring session).

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  • What courses can I take at a Community College?

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    All required courses for graduation must be completed on the high school site. English (4 years), Math (2 years, e.g. Algebra 1 and Geometry), Science (2 years, 1-Physical and 1-Life), Social Science (World History, U.S. History, American Government and Economics), Physical Education (2 years) and Fine Arts OR Foreign Language (1 year).

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  • Community College Courses

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    Students may not replace classes offered on their campus by taking community college courses unless they have unsuccessfully availed themselves of all opportunities to enroll in the equivalent class at their high school of attendance.

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  • Turning Problems into Opportunities

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    “Each problem has hidden in it an opportunity so powerful that it literally dwarfs the problem. The greatest success stories were created by people who recognized a problem and turned it into an opportunity.” - Joseph Bainbridge

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  • My child is having difficulties in his / her classes, what should I do?

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    1. The first step is to talk to your child. Ask him / her what they think the problem is. Have they been completing and turning in their homework? Is your child understanding the material? What are their test scores like? Have they been attending class? What is their behavior in class?

    Sometimes asking these simple questions can help put the “problem into perspective”

    2. The next step is to contact the teacher and if necessary arrange for a meeting.

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  • My child’s grades are poor. Who should I talk to?

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    1. Talk to your child. Has he/she been turning in their work? Did they do poorly on a test?

    2. Talk to the Teacher. Has the teacher noticed a trend (i.e. "Johnny turns in his homework, but does not complete it").

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  • What does a "weighted GPA" mean?

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    All of our honors and AP (Advanced Placement) and IB (International Baccalaureate) classes, with a grade earned of a "C" or better, are weighted in the high school grade point average. This means an extra point is added in computing the average. *Honors, AP, and **IB A's receive 5 grade points, B's receive 4, while C's receive 3. D's and F's are not given any extra grade points. The UC/CSU systems do limit the number of weighted grades taken in 9th and 10th grade that they will count in the college GPA. See the UC/CSU A-G List for details.


    *please note that Honors English 10 is an exception as this course is not weighted.
    **please note that although GBHS weights all of our IB courses into the GBHS GPA, the UC/CSU system does not weight all of them when they apply for admissions. For more information on the exceptions, refer to the Course Catalog (available on GBHS website).

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  • I heard 9th grade classes and grades do not count. Is this true?

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    All classes and grades count in high school. All grades are computed into the student’s cumulative grade point average (GPA). The 9-12, overall GPA is used for scholarship qualifying and by many private colleges and universities. Most UC's and CSU's universities begin calculating a college GPA in 10th grade which has led to confusion on this topic. It is important to note that even if a college chooses to begin the college GPA in the 10th grade year, they still look carefully at the 9th grade year to ensure that students received a minimum of a "C" grade in any college prep. courses taken in that year. An insufficient grade in a college prep. course in the 9th grade year (that is not re-taken and passed with a "C" or better) may disqualify a student in attaining admissions to a four year university.

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  • What does UC/CSU approved classes mean?

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    The California public university system has designated which of our classes they will accept as satisfying their "subject requirements" for admission. These subject requirements demonstrate that the student is prepared for the rigors of college work at the UC/CSU campuses.

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  • Can I take an English elective to replace a regular English course?

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    No, all students must take English 9, 10(or Honors English 10), 11(or AP Language/Composition or IB English), and 12 (or AP Literature/Composition or IB English) to satisfy English graduation requirements.

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  • What is the best science class to take in 9th grade?

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    It depends on your interests, abilities and your goals. The district requirement states that students must pass one year of physical science and one year of biological science by the end of the 12th grade year to graduate. These may be taken in either order. Many 9th graders choose to postpone taking a science course until the 10th grade year. Those that choose to take science in 9th grade usually take either CP Earth Science or CP Biology.

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Counselor Contact Information

  • 1.
    • Tiffani Gieck
    • A – Do
    • tigieck@rjuhsd.us
    • (916) 786-8676 ext. 5117
  • 2.
    • Kathleen Orchard
    • Dr - J
    • korchard@rjuhsd.us
    • (916) 786-8676 ext 5119
  • 3.
    • Paul Stordahl
    • K-Pa
    • pstordahl@rjuhsd.us
    • (916) 786-8676 ext. 5118
  • 4.
    • Tasman Nicolodi
    • Pe-To
    • tnicolodi@rjuhsd.us
    • (916) 786-8676 ext 5120
  • 5.
    • Holly Minor
    • Tr-Z
    • hminor@rjuhsd.us
    • (916) 786-8676 ext. 5130

Support Services Contact Information

EL Counselor

Holly Minor
(916) 786-8676 ext 5130

Special Services Coordinator (RSP and SDC)

Janice Lucas
(916) 786-8676 ext 5842

School Psychologist

Shietel Chhana
916) 786-8676 ext 5840

Learning Support Specialist

Robert Saenz
(916)786-8676 ext 5129