Bob Gambarelli

Director of Student Services

JMHS Counseling &
Student Services

Gambarelli's Counseling Newsletter


Madison HS, March 2015 Counseling Newsletter

Hi, Parents! How is your back feeling after all that snow shoveling?

Course Selection for 2015-16 continues…..
The 2015-16 Madison Course Guide is available for viewing on Madison's website  


Recently, your student should have brought a course selection form home for you to review, sign and return. Counselors are currently meeting with students individually to finalize their course selections for next year. However, please continue the discussion about what courses they will be selecting for next year, especially if they are taking multiple Honors or AP courses. Students will be extremely limited in the capacity to drop Honors/AP courses once the next school year begins.

Madison High School‘s staffing (deciding what classes will be offered and who will be teaching them) is based strictly on students’ course selections, so these selections are extremely important! This staffing occurs in mid-April, so once course selections are finalized, decisions on whether to actually offer that class are made based on the number of students who actually signed up for it. Courses that are under enrolled are deleted and not offered! Students are then reassigned to their alternative class selection.

Changes to the student’s course selection will be on a space available basis after April 7, 2015, so it is very important that you work with your son/daughter to make the most appropriate choices.
During this academic advising period, ending on March 27, counselors are heavily involved working with students, and therefore it will be difficult to accommodate you with a face to face meeting during the school day. However, please feel free to email or call with questions.


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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:
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.


Summer Programs/Enrichment/Volunteer and Job Opportunities are available online.  
Job Shadow Success for 13 JMHS Students The Tysons Regional Chamber of Commerce (TRCC) Youth & Education Committee once again sponsored a job shadow program throughout the month of February and 13 JMHS students participated in this wonderful opportunity.  Students had the unique experience to shadow a business professional in a career field that was of interest to the student.  Look out for this student opportunity next year!


12th Grade Information

Scholarship Opportunities, Applications and details are available in the Scholarship Database in Family Connection.

Local Scholarships: Vienna Women’s Club, deadline is March 17th.  Vienna Volunteer Fire Department Auxiliary College Scholarship Application, deadline is May 1st.

School Based Scholarships: 

Free Workshop:  FAFSA:  What’s Next Program:  Northern Virginia Community College, Woodbridge Campus, March 7 from 1:00pm-3:00pm, sponsored by The College Place.  Learn about updating the FAFSA, Student Aid Report, understanding the financial aid award letter, accepting student loans, formal and informal financial aid appeals and institutional payment plans.  RSVP to Kevin Jenkins at or 703-878-6133


11th Grade Information

College planning for Juniors (Part 2)- March 26, 2015
In January, we had Junior Parent/Student night (part 1), in which several college representatives gave us a general overview of the college admissions process. Concurrently, the counselors met with their junior students in the Career Center to review in more detail the college admissions process. Now it’s your turn. On March 26 at 7:00 pm, junior parents will be able to get a more detailed overview of the college process from their student’s counselor. This is an important evening, and for parents only.
The College Search Process:  Spring is the perfect time for Juniors to plan to visit some colleges as they continue to research colleges. Spring break would be an ideal time to do this.
Boys and Girls State 2015

The Counseling office is currently accepting nominations for Boys or Girls State, a week long study of government and the operation, laws and procedures employed in the Commonwealth of Virginia.  We will identify outstanding young men and women of the junior class who possess and demonstrate leadership, character and honesty and an interest in Virginia government to represent James Madison High School at the 2015 Boys State and Girls State conventions. 
Boys State will be held June 21-27, at Radford University in Radford, Virginia. 
Girls State will be held June 21-27, at Longwood University in Farmville, Virginia. 
If your junior student is interested in the program, please encourage them to see Mrs. Coogan for an application as soon as possible. 
Applications are now available and are due Friday, March 13th, to Mrs. Coogan in the counseling office. 

National Association for College Admissions Counseling (
is the umbrella organization for paving the transition from high school to college. Save this link and make their web site a part of your college exploration. There is a special section for students and parents.
Northern Virginia Regional College Fair,
Wednesday, April 1 from 6:30pm – 8:30pm at the George Mason University Patriot Center.  A list of participating colleges can be viewed at

College Results Online ( allows you to:
Examine overall graduation rates and see how those rates have changed over time, learn about universities' records graduating diverse groups of students
Compare the graduation rates of similar institutions - colleges and universities that share many characteristics and serve similar student populations
Family Connection -Remember that there is an extensive college handbook in Family Connection. Set aside some time every week to become familiar with the many documents housed there for your perusal.


10th grade information
Sophomore College Planning Workshop for Parents and Students
This is an introduction to the college admissions process for our sophomore parents and students. It will take place on Thursday, April 23, 7:00 p.m. in the Auditorium. Our guest speaker, a college admissions counselor, will provide valuable information about:  factors that influence college admissions decisions, preparing to apply for college, campus visit information, timelines and decision making in the college application process.  This is a very well-received program that you won't want to miss!  See you then!

Thought for the month…..
The majority of us lead quiet, unheralded lives as we pass through this world. There will most likely be no parades for us, no monuments created in our honor. But that does not lessen our impact, for there are scores of people waiting for someone like us to come along; people who appreciate our compassion, our encouragement, who will need our unique talents. Someone who will live a happier life merely because we took the time to share what we have to give.
Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around. It’s overwhelming to consider the continuous opportunities there are to make our love felt.
Leo Buscalgia



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 warm!






Gambo signature





Bob Gambarelli
Director of Student Services