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When hiring an IEC is overkill - grade your high school guidance office

Updated: Mar 14, 2022

pen and paper with checkboxes

Hiring an Independent Education Consultant is not always necessary. Certainly, if a student's high school invests resources into a college planning office, our services may be overkill and add extra work for a student. How can you tell in advance?

  • Ask for and review your high school's profile report - Colleges evaluate high schools as well as students. Not all schools author and submit a separate profile report, but they should. Think of the profile report as a slick marketing piece that advocates the strength of the school's curriculum and results. If your student's high school does not create a profile report, ask the guidance counselor how they might complete your student's common application school report.

  • Do selective colleges visit your student's high school? - Do colleges deem your student's high school worth the time or money to send someone? Are the schools who are visiting mostly less selective regional schools, or do selective schools come to call?

  • Understand your guidance office's processes before Junior year - ask questions.

  • Curriculum - Is there a college planning curriculum? What content is covered each month, and when does the curriculum begin?

  • Technology - What is the learning platform the school uses for college planning – Naviance, Cialfo, Scoir? Is data within the platform actively updated and managed, or is it simply a placeholder for requesting transcripts and recommendation letters?

  • Admission Tests - Does the school offer an ACT and an SAT school day in the spring of Junior year? What type of admission test practice is coordinated within the school? Are the student's admission test scores (ACT/SAT/AP) higher than the national average?

  • Writing Resource Center - What is the high school process to help stud