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Urgent advice needed regarding National Merit Scholarship...

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This is son #3, but it is our first time through the PSAT/National Merit Scholarship so please bear with me. This son is also my first to attend public high school full time since his freshman year. He got his NMS notification in the spring & turned in his potential college choices. But he has not yet received the mysterious "packet."


Question #1: Should we expect he will receive a packet since his PSAT score is 5 points above the Michigan cutoff?


Question #2: Michigan requires its public high school students to take the ACT, so he has not taken the SAT. I just saw on the college board website that the SAT is required to move forward in the competition. Is it already too late? Or can he take it this fall? Or is he already out of the competition because somehow we did not realize that this was required? I will feel so bad if we screwed this up due to sheer ignorance, but we need to know.




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Actually, there is a deadline on the SAT testing, but you're not too late! This year's group of seniors must take the SAT by the December 2010 administration. The rules for advancing to finalist standing are here.


If your ds hasn't received his packet yet and he's sure he made the cutoff, I would definitely contact his school. He'll need to fill out some paperwork and write an essay in order to advance to finalist standing. His school counselor will also have forms to fill out and a recommendation letter to write. The whole packet has to be sent back to the National Merit office by October 13.



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Call the school and/or NMS to be sure you get good answers. A good resource is the hs2coll Yahoo group, where they discuss the finer details of NM forms every year. Even if your kiddo is in school (and I gather he is?), it is wise to get the info from experienced moms, as the guidance counselors aren't always quite as savvy as the average hs2coll mom!


(Link to the hs2coll group is on my "homeschooling high school" page.)




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I really appreciate the heads up on the new rules and the link for further information. Yes, my son is in his senior year at public school & we are having to work with a brand new principal and a brand new guidance counselor, so I don't anticipate this process going smoothly. My 2 older sons graduated from homeschool and sometimes I regret sending this one to public high school. But I guess every decision has its pros & cons.

Thanks again!


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