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High School Registration Nightmare

Original post made by Seriouslyfolks, Foothill High School, on Aug 19, 2009

Has any else experienced the scheduling nightmare that we have with respect to our children getting their class schedules and having them so messed up that the kids (expecially our seniors) are truly concerned about getting their schedules fixed in order to have themselves "college" ready when they need to start the application process. Foothill may not have been the only highschool in this dilemma - but maybe it's because there seems to be a huge disparity between the two high schools and the way that Amador allows students to switch classes - where , at Foothill, it is truly frowned upon, and rarely allowed. Foothill students had to turn their schedule requests in almost 6 months ago - so, how is it that , on the seniors "scheduled" registration day, their schedules were not even printed and available until after 4PM....4 hours after the registration process had begun.... can someone explain the situation, and also provide some understanding as to why our kids have to wait until AFTER two weeks of school has passed before they can switch classes....this is absurd - if they can make the changes now, then WHY NOT? I can't be the only parent who has been extremely frustrated with this.

Comments (19)

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Posted by Foothill Parent
a resident of Foothill High School
on Aug 19, 2009 at 1:27 pm

Nightmare, Yes! I also don't understand the process, Why were there so many scheduling problems was it Data Entry, Computer Glitch? Will the student that missed the first two weeks of classroom instruction not be tested on that material or are the first two weeks of school not really that important?
My child (not a Senior) also had a schedule problem - she was almost in tears, she was totally frustrated because she didn't get the class she requested & needs (in order to attend a UC).
On the first day of registration, the line to have your schedule changed was all the way out the MPR. We were asked, very nicely, to check in with the counseling office two weeks after school started to switch classes because Seniors were a priority, and because she already had 6 classes on her schedule. Meltdown.
My husband felt that waiting two weeks to add a biology class was unacceptable because she would have a tough time of catching up. So we returned the next day to see if we could get the class she needed added to her schedule.
This time, she was told to write down what she wanted to add/change on her schedule, turn it in, and, check back on Monday morning to find out if her request has been approved. We're keeping our fingers crossed. We'll be there Monday Morning with a positive attitude knowing that they really are trying their best to accomodate everyone.
Perhaps Foothill needs advice from Amador on their scheduling process. Don't know if this is possible, but Foothill might want to consider asking volunteers to help out prescreen Senior schedules to make sure they're not missing any classes. Good Luck Seriouslyfolks!

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Posted by Parent of Two
a resident of Val Vista
on Aug 19, 2009 at 3:44 pm

Parent of Two is a registered user.

Not to step on your (well-founded) complaints, but I registered two kids at Foothill this week (freshman and junior) with no problems and with completely full and correct schedules. Granted, we may have been just lucky, but I wanted to make sure that people didn't get the impression that Foothill was completely a KeystoneKops episode.

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Posted by I hear you!
a resident of Vintage Hills
on Aug 19, 2009 at 5:40 pm

At Amador on Monday I waited over two hours in many different lines and when we finally got my daughter's schedule it was also incorrect. The good news is that Mr. Coupe was there and very nicely took the schedule and noted the mistake on it and said that we would get a call in one to two days. Sure enough one day later we got the call and we picked up the corrected schedule today. Although the registration part was a complete disaster I was very pleased the way the scheduling mistake was taken care of in a timely fashion. Mr. Coupe was very pleasant and told my daughter to take a deep breath and that everything was going to be ok. (I think he was also speaking to me too-I was ready to flip my lid!)

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Posted by SteveP
a resident of Parkside
on Aug 19, 2009 at 7:01 pm

SteveP is a registered user.

Parent of Two--you had no problems for 2 reasons (and maybe more): you had no seniors to register and you were very lucky.
There was no explanation given for the scheduling snafu...the volunteers who were tasked with communicating the bad news about senior schedules not being completed on time had no clue why they were not done as expected.
Myabe they'll blame it on the fact they couldn't extort all the money they wanted with measure G's failure and the fund raisers poor results.

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Posted by Set Them Free
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Aug 20, 2009 at 12:41 am

Our two kids went to Amador Valley and registered without any issues. One senior, one freshman, zero parents, zero hassles. They learned so much about self reliance. Try it next year - you may be pleasantly surprised.

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Posted by Really, really!
a resident of Bordeaux Estates
on Aug 20, 2009 at 8:17 am

Kudos to Amador. I registered two seniors yesterday and was in and out in 30 minutes. I was quite a few hundred dollars poorer, but that is to be expected. Great job by the staff and volunteers!

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Posted by Toni, teacher and parent
a resident of Amador Valley High School
on Aug 20, 2009 at 8:23 am

No problems at AVHS, keep in mind this is the first year that registration is being done differently-online. However, I am pleased that with only one child-soph. left at AVHS that the process was smooth and flawless. Thank you to both the staff and the countless PTSA parent volunteers who gave of their time to help the process run all that much more smoothly.

Measure G nah sayers-use a different approach. This is not the venue for your senseless comments.

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Posted by SteveP
a resident of Parkside
on Aug 20, 2009 at 8:52 am

SteveP is a registered user.

Toni, what's a 'nah sayer'? You're a teacher? Talk about senseless comments......

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Posted by Kathleen
a resident of Amador Valley High School
on Aug 20, 2009 at 9:02 am

The registration process at AVHS for our sophomore went smoothly. This is our second child to attend AVHS and, while registration is never a joy, it has never been a negative experience, even with a now-graduated senior. It did take almost 2 hours and cost over $300., but the schedule was correct, all the PTSA volunteers were cheerful and informative, and those with real problems reported being helped quickly. Hats off to Mr. Coupe and team!

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Posted by LNMart
a resident of Val Vista
on Aug 20, 2009 at 9:16 am

Oh my, will the Measure G issue ever die, or must it continue to be inserted in every school issue that comes up by those who just aren't willing to move on?

Re registration; I'm with Set Them Free, we really do a diservice to our High School children by continuing to hold their hands through life's little difficulties, and considering everything they'll need to handle as they enter their adult years, getting their schedules changed within 2 weeks, really is a small issue. This will prepare them for the more difficult issues they're going to have when trying to get courses at the impacted Universities. I have 3 kids in college and believe me they all know how to "add in" to the classes they couldn't get, and they go and sit in classes with the hopes that they'll get a permanent seat in that class. It's their education and they get to handle the hassles.

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Posted by Remember when?
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Aug 20, 2009 at 9:40 am

My brother, sister and I attended San Ramon Valley High in the 70's. Were we the only ones who did not have parents with us at registration? If my memory is correct, I don't recall seeing any parents at "walk through". And, yes, I do remember it being a big, huge nightmare. I think I even recall some tears. But, we had to figure it out on our own. No mom there to dry the tears or lobby for better classes or teachers. But, some how we all received the classes we needed to graduate high school and attend college. I know, I know, times have changed. Everything is tougher now. However, I agree with Set Them Free. Our children can accomplish amazing things, when we let them.

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Posted by question
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Aug 20, 2009 at 10:52 am

For those with concerns about the registration or schedule changes - question:

Were you not able to talk to an administrator that day? Did you follow up and contact one of them via phone or in the office?

Just curious.

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Posted by Registration
a resident of Foothill High School
on Aug 20, 2009 at 11:11 am

My youngest graduated from Foothill a few years ago. Went through 7 straight years of walk-through registration without an issue: schedules were complete and all were responsive. I also found that lines were not long at all.

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Posted by Amador Mom
a resident of Pleasanton Meadows
on Aug 20, 2009 at 11:49 am

I took my child, 11th grade, to registration at AVHS. We stood in line, chatted with friends and enjoyed our time together... she'll be gone soon enough. Half way through she went on to do volunteer duty and I finished up for her then took over to do my volunteer work. She was placed in the same math class that she had last year...oops. She went to the office talked to administration and was told they will call her in to meet with the counselor BEFORE school to make sure the changes are OK. Mistakes happen but Amador (Mr Forbert) was polite and there were no tears or tantrums!

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Posted by Pro-Law
a resident of another community
on Aug 20, 2009 at 12:44 pm

I remember several years ago FHS was anti changing schedules. They said "we don't do that". Pretty unresponsive to requests, and treated people like we were idiots.

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Posted by AVHS parent
a resident of Birdland
on Aug 20, 2009 at 7:43 pm

Yes, at AVHS students had to turn their schedule requests in almost 6 months ago. Last year dd had schedule changes so she needed to be flexible and start at 7 am. This year (senior) she talked with the math teachers and wants to swap one AP for another. We'll see. Officially, there are no schedule changes except for wrong levels this year. My son had one year (jr) where his whole schedule needed to be rearranged.

Lines were long - more so because many came at the beginning instead of their time slot. At Harvest Park one year both kids brought checks and signed forms, got their stuff, etc. and left. Go to high school and parents are required. Go figure! Yes, we filled out the forms and checks in advanced. One form was wrong - prices - but the changes cancelled out. This is the first year forms were not added to the packet - I had printed them out over a week in advanced and then double checked the night before.

I guess CA is so litigious (or I'm showing my age), you sign your life away and then money. It was definitely not so complicated when I was in high school both at a public school on the east coast & private school abroad. I didn't notice a distinction between public & private except foreign language was harder & more competitive at the latter. Those from CA struggled. I also didn't see any surprises from grades to SATs, but daughter's SAT in English is way below the A's she gets at AVHS (son's was even worse). I just hope she can find an affordable college.

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Posted by Mom
a resident of Foothill Knolls
on Aug 21, 2009 at 10:52 am

I had an easy registration at Foothill this year, but last year was a nightmare. My son had a major scheduling mistake and they just kept saying come back tomorrow until I finally called the counselor. She never did get the correct classes she needed. The students in the AP classes apparently all live in apartments in Pleasanton, or perhaps homes in Fremont.

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Posted by John Adams
a resident of Amador Valley High School
on Aug 22, 2009 at 8:03 am

I think Amador registration went very smoothly. We chose not to stand in the very long payment line because we simply didn't buy anything (there was also an option to pay online). Outside of one overly aggressive eScrip pusher who gave us the evil eye when I said "no thanks," everyone was lovely.

Did we get what we wanted? No, of course not. What's going to be a nightmare for students and staff alike will be the first day of school. Note said no schedule changes until then, but no instructions on how to handle changes. Kids will be stuffing into the counseling office, I guess.

Steve, did you say "Nah, I won't vote to raise my taxes?" So that makes you a "nah sayer" I guess.

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Posted by amadormom
a resident of Downtown
on Aug 24, 2009 at 12:46 pm

With my second child new to Amador this year, and the online registration, I was dreading walk-thru this year, but it was not bad at all, about an hour and a half, chatting with friends. Getting the online forms to download was a nightmare, but I put the hi-tech teenagers on the task and it was done. One schedule snafu - not enough seats in the laptop classes, but it's an error we chose to live with. Mr. Coupe was present and as nice as he's ever been, with only three people ahead of us in line. NOTE to parents of seniors who cannot get the classes required, a little-known option available is to take the online class from Brigham Young University....costs a little, get it PRE-approved by the counseling office, and do the work early - don't wait till the last semester...worked for us!

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