September/October  2021

    Dear seniors and parents:

    Welcome to the senior year.  In order to keep you informed throughout the year of the planning process, we will be emailing or sending a letter every one to two months.  The next parent letter will be at the beginning of November.  A monthly scholarship list will available via email, picked up in the counseling office, and posted on our website ---sevier.org/schools/SHS. The list will have a variety of scholarships, including due dates, criteria for the scholarship as well as how to apply for the scholarship.

    Ms. Buffington is our school counselor who took Ms. Mize’s position.  She has over 20 years’ experience as a school counselor and we welcome her to the team.

    The following checklist will keep you informed and up to date about planning the senior year.  Also, we have included a list of dates of various events, college visits and test administrations.

    To do in September and October

    •  Send parent’s email address to

                cheryltroutman@sevier.org  A-G   candibuffington@sevier.org  H-O    bethanyschultz@sevier.org  P-Z   

                We may have your email if you gave it to us at the junior parent night or recently contacted.

    • Review the scholarship list each time it is available-usually every1-2 months. 
    • Use notebook/binder to keep educational information and planning, include:

           Master calendar with test dates; fees; due dates for application and financial aid:

           copies of the completed school applications, and financial aid information  

    • Focus on your top 3-4 school choices and begin scheduling college visits.  Visits to technical schools and cosmetology schools are also included in the 2 excused absences for every senior for college visits.
    • Pick up a college visit form before visiting the school, from the counseling office.
    • Apply to schools that interest you.  Most all schools want you to apply on-line.  There is normally an application fee along with the application.
    • There will be a college fair at Pigeon Forge High School on September 30th. We plan on having a TCAT field trip November 17th. Details and permission forms will be given in a few weeks.
    • Request a transcript through Parchment (students will make an account/sign-up during school in a couple of weeks at the school).                                                                                                                
    • The state is giving a senior ACT retake free for all seniors in the fall.  It is scheduled for Tuesday, October 5th at SHS.  You do not sign up for it-they will sign up at the school. The ACT is a graduation requirement-not specific scores but they have to take it in order to get a regular diploma.

    We suggest that students take the ACT at least 3 times before graduating.  A free, personalized practice test for the ACT (ACT Academy) is found at www.act.org/academy feel free to go ahead and start practicing. Some schools superscore the ACT and use it to determine scholarships.  Some schools do not superscore.  Deadlines for additional ACT and SAT are found in the upcoming dates.

    • Ask teachers for recommendations if requested for scholarships and or school applications.  Pick up a letter request form in the counseling office if needed.  Give them at least one –two weeks notice.
    • Create a fafsa ID now to use as your personal identification and electronic signature when you complete the FAFSA online in October.  Both student and a parent need to have their own ID so both need to create one.  Go to https://studentaid.gov/fsa-id/create-account/launch to create your ID.  The FAFSA is the financial aid form which is used for eligibility as well as the Hope Lottery Scholarship.  If you plan on attending any post-secondary school, you must create a FSA ID and complete the FAFSA
    • A senior parent/student night is September 23rd from 6:00-7:15pm in the SHS auditorium. We will have packets for the meeting in-person or for your teenager to pick up if you cannot attend the meeting.
    • Ask parents to check with their employer to see if they have scholarships.
    • Conduct a free scholarship search using www.fastweb.com and www.scholarships.com.  Once completed, it will give due date, criteria of scholarship, amount of scholarship, and website for more details.
    • Students who think they are in the top 10% must come by their counselor’s office and confirm starting Tuesday, Aug 31st.  We have ranking completed and students need to make sure they have their blue top 10% form signed by parent.  If we still need your blue form your name will be on a list beside the top 10% list with your name on it.   It is the student’s responsibility to let your counselor know if they are trying for top 10% or if they have retaken a class to increase their GPA and/or ranking. Any student wanting to retake a class for a better grade and be considered for top 10% or Valedictorian position must retake the class in the fall if offered as to have their grade calculated in their GPA(must have min of 3.0 GPA at this time) for ranking in December/January. Only those students who have retaken the needed classes as well as the students who are on track for top 10%/Valedictorian position in the fall will be considered for yearbook, valedictorian /salutatorian, etc.

    Let us know how we can help your teenager. We look forward to working with them this year.

    Ms. Troutman   A-G                        Ms.Buffington    H-O                              Ms. Schultz   P-Z


    Upcoming events and dates

    Now   ------Apply for TN Promise at www.tnpromise.gov if your teenager wants to attend a

                       community college or TCAT (2 years free tuition)

    Now   ------UTK admission application is available on line at https://admissions.utk.edu/apply/first-year/- $50.00

                      application fee (We would advise using the VIP portal rather than the Common Application

                       when applying only to UTK).   UTK will notify students early of acceptance if they applied

                       early-usually in October through December.  See info at end of letter regarding UT promise info on


    Now   ------Create your FSA ID and parent ID at www.fsaid.ed.gov to use for fafsa in Oct.

    Aug 31-----Begin confirming top 10%-pick up blue form if name listed beside top 10% form

    Aug 31-----Sept./October scholarship list should be available (parent emails, and picking up in counseling office)

    Sept. 3----- Deadline for registering for the SAT on Oct.2rd Register at collegeboard.org

    Sept 3  ---- Vacation-No school

    Sept.5------ Holiday –No school

    Sept 13-----All seniors will sign up throughout the day for TNP, Parchment-transcript request and possible a few others

    Sept 14-----Parent/Teacher conference 3:30-6:30

    Sept. 17----Deadline for registering for the National test for ACT on Oct 23rd.  Register at actstudent.org

    Sept 23-----6:00-7:15 Senior parent night at SHS in the auditorium--social distancing in place

    Sept. 23----Senior picture retakes after school.  Come sign-up for appt. in Ms. Neun’s room after Sept. 1st

    Sept 30-----College Fair at Pigeon Forge High School-Take students on buses-permission forms will be given later

    Oct. 1 ------First day you can complete the fafsa online-Go to www.fafsa.gov (do not use any site that asks you to pay)

    Oct 2------- SAT test

    Oct. 4-------Report card

    Oct 5--------Senior ACT retake

    Oct. 15 & 18-Fall break

    Oct 28------ASVAB given at SHS--Sign up in counseling office in early/mid October 

    Nov. 1------TN Promise deadline to apply


    The state has designated all Tennessee high school students to work towards being “Ready Graduates” which means that the student demonstrates post-secondary and workforce readiness.  SHS plans are to increase the amount who are “Ready Graduates”.  There are 4 ways that a student can obtain Ready Graduate:

    • score a 21 or higher on the ACT; or
    • complete 4 early postsecondary opportunities (EPSOs);or
    • complete 2 EPSOs + earn an industry certification (on a CTE pathway leading to credential); or
    • complete 2 EPSOs + score a designated score (31) on the Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery (ASVAB) Armed Forces Qualifying Test (AFQT).

    EPSO’s offered at SHS are AP classes, Dual enrollment, dual credit.  The ASVAB will be on October 28th.  If your son/daughter did not meet the 21 ACT composite yet, we would highly recommend taking the ASVAB to try and meet it along with getting the 2 EPSO’s. Feel free to look online for more information:    https://www.tn.gov/education/early-postsecondary.html


    UT Promise Scholarship

    Good afternoon!
    The Class of 2022 UT Promise scholarship application is now open! UT Promise is a last-dollar scholarship for students accepted into undergraduate programs at UT Knoxville, Chattanooga, Martin and Memphis. In order to become eligible for UT Promise, students must apply no later than December 1, 2021.

    For UT Promise eligibility, students must complete the following steps:
    • Apply for TN Promise by November 1, 2021
    • Submit a UT Promise application by December 1, 2021
    • Submit an admissions application their University of Tennessee institution of choice by December 15, 2021
    • Complete the 2022-2023 FAFSA by February 1, 2022 using 2020 tax information. Students can begin completing the 2022-2023 FAFSA on October 1, 2021. 
    • Submit 8 hours of community service to tnAchieves by July 1, 2022. Students can begin accruing hours on November 2, 2021.
    In addition to meeting TN Promise and UT Promise eligibility requirements, students must also be eligible for the Hope scholarship and have a household income of less than $50,000. 

    UT Promise functions separately from TN Promise and can only be used for universities in the UT system. Students must meet all TN Promise requirements, in addition to the college admissions and UT Promise application, prior to enrollment at a UT institution in the fall. Final eligibility will be determined by the University of Tennessee after the July 1, 2022 community service deadline.