Bob Gambarelli

Director of Student Services

JMHS Counseling &
Student Services

Gambarelli's Counseling Newsletter


Madison HS, February 2015 Counseling Newsletter

Hi, Madison Parents!

FACEBOOK: Madison Counseling & Student Services has posted several tidbits on our Facebook page to help keep students and parents informed about upcoming events, reminders and student services information.  Click here to view our page (you don’t need to be a Facebook member to view our postings.)  However, IF you are a member, please choose to “LIKE” us and “SHARE” this page.

VISIT our Counseling & Student Services website, LIKE us on Facebook and FOLLOW us on Twitter!
  JMHS Counseling & Student Services
 Madison Counseling on Facebook
MadCounselors on Twitter


The 2015-16 Madison Course Guide is available

CURRICULUM NIGHTwill be held on Feb.5 from 7:00 P.M. until 9:00 P.M, 6:30 pm for rising 9th graders (Snow date February 12). This program will provide parents and students, grades 8 – 11, an opportunity to learn about academic classes, elective classes, and course requirements that are available. Teachers and departments from Madison, as well as the FCPS Academies, will have displays and information available to provide you with an excellent opportunity to find out about the different curricular offerings and requirements and to ask questions about course sequence, course content, and activities.

AP CLASSES: During the Curriculum Night, there will be special presentations for students who are considering enrolling in an AP class for the 2015-16 school year. Students and parents have had difficulty in the past understanding the rigorous nature of AP classes and the TIME required in these classes. Teachers will present the expectations and curriculum of the classes, so that students and parents can weigh the demands of the course against the rest of the student’s obligations, both academic and extracurricular. We expect those who sign up for AP/Honors classes to attempt them for the entire year. Therefore, we want you to choose these classes wisely.

An Elective Fair will be held for all students on Feb.6 during the school day. Students have the opportunity to visit three elective presentations to help them with their elective choices. This opportunity does not substitute for the information received at the evening curriculum program, but will supplement it. This elective fair gives students a chance to explore the entire range of elective courses that will be offered at Madison next year. During the Electives Fair on Friday, February 6, all seniors are expected to report to the main gym for a special activity.  


On Feb. 9, there will be a school wide presentation by the counselors about course selection for next year. During that same week, students will be visiting teachers to discuss courses and get signatures where appropriate. They will then bring the course selection sheet home for you to sign. We are asking you to review it during that week and have your student return the yellow course selection sheet (completely filled out and signed by parents) to their Warhawk Time teacher on Friday, Feb.13.  Beginning Feb. 17, the counselors will be meeting with your student individually to finalize their course selections for next year.


The course selection schedule is as follows:
Rising 11th grade- Feb.17-Feb.26
Rising 10th grade- Feb. 27- Mar. 10
Rising 9th grade- Mar. 11- Mar.17

Please note: From Feb.17- Mar.27, the counselors will be working individually with your student throughout the entire school day. During this period, the counselors welcome phone calls/emails, but it will be very difficult to schedule
in- school appointments. 


AP Student discussion panels 2015-16

AP Discussion panels- Back by popular demand, there will be AP Discussion Panels during the week of February 9-13 in Warhawk Time

Come find out about AP Classes from current students! 
Hear inside information such as:
 What they wish they had known before the class
 What skills they think are important
 How much homework there actually is each day


Tuesday, 2/10

Wednesday, 2/11

Thursday, 2/12

Friday, 2/13

Library Lab


Calculus BC


Career Center

English 11


US History


Black Box Theater

Calculus AB

English 12

Environmental Science

Orchestra Room

World History 



AP Psychology

AP Exams
Advanced Placement (AP) Exams will be administered from May 4 – 15, 2015.  All students currently enrolled in an AP course at Madison will have the accompanying AP exam automatically ordered at no charge. 
Any student NOT currently enrolled in an AP course but who wishes to take an AP exam should contact Tonya Lathom at or 703-319-2349 no later than March 16, 2015 for registration information.  Please note that a $100 fee will be charged.  Checks may be made payable to Madison High School.
The AP Exam Schedule can be found at:
Science Fair Judges Needed!
The JMHS Science Fair takes place on Wednesday, February 4th, and the science department is in need of additional judges.  If you can spare a few hours (roughly from 1:30 PM – 5:30 PM; other arrangements are possible), we would love to have you.  We welcome logical people of all disciplines. Please contact Dick Gongaware @
S.A.T. registration: we recommend that our Juniors take the SAT test once during this school year. The test dates are March 14 (here at Madison), May and June (not at Madison). Students need to register online at the College Board - There is a wealth of academic and guidance related information on You can access through your student's blackboard account at Blackboard   

FCPS Academies- we invite you to explore the opportunities available at the six FCPS Academies.  For information about what an FCPS Academy is, please see FCPS Academy info.  For detailed information about each Academy, please see the individual Academy’s website or attend their open house (listed below).

Academy Open Houses
Please visit the following high schools to learn about their varied and exciting academy programs:
Chantilly- Feb. 18; 6:00 (free spaghetti dinner) -7:30 pm
Fairfax- Feb. 11; 6:00-8:30 pm
Falls Church- Feb. 6- 6:30-8:30 pm

Mindfulness at Madison- following up on the recent parent program that the PTSA presented, Madison’s faculty was trained on “Mindfulness”, which is described as daily practices that help build one’s awareness and concentration, help relieve stress,  and help us achieve greater clarity, direction, and balance in all aspects of our lives. 
The PTSA is looking to fund these programs for interested students during the school day. Also, if there is interest, an evening series for parents is a possibility. If either you or your students may be interested in this, please let me know at If you would like to learn more about it, Anderson Cooper of “60 Minutes” has a segment about it, as well as an article about it in the Washington Post


A.P. Proctors needed- How would you like to help us proctor an A.P. exam this year? We are in need of parents who would like to volunteer a morning or afternoon in early May to help us administer an AP exam. No experience needed. The actual dates are May 4 to May 14. The A.M slots would be from 7:00-11:30 and the PM slots would be from 11:30am-4:00pm. Please contact Tonya Lathom at if you would like to help us.

 Junior College Planning Presentation
Junior students, through their history class, recently met in the Career Center with a counselor and Mrs. Otto for a session about college planning.  Students completed a Multiple Intelligence assessment which not only provided the top intelligences for each student, but also linked potential careers and majors to colleges that offered a particular major.  If your student did not take the MI Advantage, all juniors have the opportunity to complete this assessment.  It is available in Family Connection, under the “About Me” tab and is listed as MI Advantage.  The presentation is also posted in the Document Library in Family Connection in the 11th grade folder.


Senior Class News
Senior dues are now $150.00*.  Please make checks payable to JMHS Class of 2015 and make sure the student’s name and t-shirt size are written on the check. Please turn in checks to the Main Office or directly to Miss Ronan in the library. For more info: Senior Dues Flyer
* If you qualify for the FCPS Free or Reduced Lunch Program, please see your school counselor.
If you have questions, please contact the Senior Class Captains.
Dawn Dickerson at or 703-319-2560
Krissy Ronan at or 703-319-2353


Free FAFSA Clinics and College Access Fairfax Scholarships
College Access Fairfaxis committed to helping Fairfax County Public School students with the daunting and complex task of acquiring financial aid for post-secondary education.  College Access Fairfax offers FAFSA clinics and provides several scholarship opportunities.  Additional information is available online at College Access Fairfax

Local Scholarship Opportunities will be sent out via email through Family Connection.  Recent local scholarship emails include:  Vienna Woman's Club and NVADACA (Northern Virginia Athletic Directors and Coaches Association) scholarship information.  The FCPS scholarship database is available in Family Connection, which is accessible through your FCPS/24-7 Blackboard account and does list local/district scholarships.  The email address you have in your FCPS 24-7 Blackboard account is linked to Family Connection.  Students and parents who have a current email address in Blackboard will receive these email updates.  More financial aid resources  are available online.

Military Academy/ROTC Night, February 24, 7:00pm at Fairfax High School
If you are interested in attending a U.S. Military Service Academy: Air Force, Military, Naval, Merchant Marine, Coast Guard or ROTC Program: Air Force, Army, Navy & Marine Corps, then you should attend the Academy/ROTC program on February 24 at 7:00pm at Fairfax High School. This is an annual event hosted by Madison, Oakton, Woodson, Fairfax and Marshall High Schools.  A representative from Congressman Connolly's Office will also speak about the nomination process for the Academies.

Gap Year Fair, February 24, 7:00pm at Marshall High School
The FCPS Gap Year Fair will be held on February 24 at 7:00pm at Marshall High School.  There will be a general presentation about taking a gap year followed by a fair in which students may talk with and gather information from a variety of individual organizations that offer gap year programs.

Articles of Interest:



Cynthia Coogan

A-Car 9th – 11th

A-Cham 12th


Samantha Morick

Cas-Es 9th-11th

Chan-Fr 12th


Alex Gorman

Et-Hen 9th-11th

Fs-Ji 12th


Nada Madrid

Heo-Lam 9th-11th

Jk-May 12th


Tonya Lathom

Lan-Moo 9th-11th



Erin Kennedy

Mop-Rin 9th-11th

Maz-Pri 12th


Matt Murray

Rio-Swa 9th-11th

Prj-Sto 12th


Tim Buckley

Swb-Z 9th-11th

Stp-Z 12th






Stay well!






Gambo signature





Bob Gambarelli
Director of Student Services