Counseling & Advising

SHC school counselors and college advisors are dedicated to ensuring that all of our students maximize their potential so that they are empowered with habits of mind, skills, and information to make educated choices for the present and future.

Incoming students are assigned a school counselor who works with them through graduation. During their junior year, students are also assigned a college advisor who will guide them through the college research, application and financial aid processes. School counselors meet with students individually to get to know them and to offer guidance tailored to their specific needs. Counselors also hold regular group meetings to provide information relevant to grade-level social and academic development, curriculum options, and college preparation and planning. College advisors provide students and families with information via group meetings and, starting in the spring of junior year, individualized planning.

Understanding that the developmental stage of adolescence can be challenging, SHC school counselors work to ensure that the transition from adolescence to adulthood is as smooth and as fluid as possible. To support a student's transition from secondary school through collegiate matriculation, parents are invited to discuss any issues or concerns they may have regarding the academic, personal, emotional or spiritual development of their child with their child’s school counselor. Parents are also strongly encouraged to meet with their student’s college advisor in the spring or summer prior to the senior year.

SHC students have access to the Testing Center and the Academic Support Center (ASC). The Testing Center facilitates extended time testing and make up assignments missed because of illness, retreats or athletics. The ASC facilitates a successful entrance to a college preparatory curriculum, as well as access to peer tutoring for occasional academic assistance. Some ninth graders are assigned to a Study and Organization Skills course hosted by the ASC; the additional structure and support of this course facilitates success in the student's other courses and co-curriculars. All ninth graders are able to stop by the Academic Support Center for Math Mondays, Writing Wednesdays, or tutoring from the ASC instructors or peer tutors. 

Counseling Department Mission

Sacred Heart Cathedral’s Counseling and Advising Program provides parents and students the academic guidance they need to navigate a challenging college prep curriculum commensurate with the individual student’s gifts, talents, and aspirations in order to make the transition from secondary school to college as seamless as possible. In addition, school counselors guide, support, encourage and nurture students to advance emotionally, socially and spiritually from adolescence to adulthood.

Counseling Department Goals

SHC school counselors and college advisors assist students to:

  • Make mature decisions guided by the Gospel and teachings of the Catholic Church.
  • Develop relationships with others predicated upon respecting the dignity of each person.
  • Discern and practice appropriate personal and social behavior.
  • Achieve personal and academic goals that lead to success.
  • Navigate technology for college planning and ascertain collegiate options.
  • Identify and pursue post-secondary opportunities commensurate with individual interests, talents and abilities.

Our Counseling & Advising Model

We offer a specialized and comprehensive approach to serve SHC students and families. School counselors and our Academic Resource Specialist serve students from the time they enter until the time they graduate from SHC. Beginning junior year, school counselors are joined by college advisors who guide students through the increasingly complex tasks of college research, application, and financial aid process.

Separating these roles allows school counselors to be more available and responsive to the academic, spiritual, and social-emotional needs of students while allowing college advisors to provide students and families with individualized planning throughout the college admissions process.

College and University Placements



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Serving All Our Students

Academic Success Center (ASC)

We recognize that our rigorous college preparatory curriculum can prove daunting, especially for incoming students. To foster academic skills and confidence, SHC designed the Academic Success Center. Some ninth graders will be assigned to a Study and Organizational Skills class which meets in the ASC, and other students opt to stop by for occasional assistance with a single assignment or concept. The ASC is located on the first floor of the La Salle campus, and is open regularly during white collaboration periods and after school. The ASC is staffed by experienced SHC faculty and California Scholarship Federation (CSF) peer tutors.

Testing Center

The Testing Center, located on the first floor of the La Salle campus, provides a supervised site for students to complete assessments that require additional time or to make up work that they missed due to absences (whether for illness, athletics, or immersion trips). The Testing Center is open from 7:30am to 3:30pm each school day.

Students with Learning Disabilities

SHC provides educational support services to students with specific, documented learning disabilities and/or attention deficit hyperactivity disorder to help ensure that that all SHC students are fully integrated into our college preparatory environment. Our dedicated counselor, experienced in supporting students with LD and ADHD at the secondary and collegiate level, collaborates with teachers and school counselors to determine reasonable accommodations to meet individual needs. Although curriculum is not modified, students may receive accommodations and assistance with developing self-advocacy skills and strategies that stress independent learning and prepare them for a positive college education. Accommodations may include extended time for testing; alternative testing; arranged note-takers, readers, and scribes; access to assistive technologies; and professional referrals.

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