College Counseling

Can you make the time to take a one, two, or three-day trip with your child to visit colleges? Check out this DVS College Visit trip guide!




To access Da Vinci Schools’ Naviance Family Connection website, please click on the link below:

Naviance Family Connection – Da Vinci Science

Family Connection (FC) is an online counseling program that will greatly aid in your college search. All Da Vinci students and parent/guardians will have a personal account. Below you will find the most utilized features:

Resume Builder: Much like in school, it is important to collect and document all work and progress made beginning in the ninth grade year. This feature allows students to log their club and community service hours, work experience, summer programs, college courses, athletic or special interest activities, and any award.

Colleges I’m Thinking About: As early as the spring of their junior year, students will begin to compile a list of potential schools that they are interested in. This list will continue to grow or edits will be made as the student becomes more educated on what the college or university has to offer.

Request Transcripts: At some point during the college application process, the student will be required to submit their transcript. Students applying to a UC or Cal State school will self-report and upon acceptance send the transcript. The student will be able to request their transcript from Da Vinci’s registrar office through FC under the “college” tab. Any student who has attended multiple schools, thus having several transcripts must contact their former school and request a transcript sent to the college or university. It is not the responsibility of Da Vinci but rather the student.

Recommendation Request Process: Asking a teacher or staff member to write a recommendation is a big deal because you are asking for an individual’s time and insight. A student cannot give the recommender a few days to write the recommendation. The student must provide lead time and complete the questionnaire (see below) along with following the specific steps listed under the “my planner” tab.

Letter of Recommendation, Student Questionnaire: When a student asks a teacher or staff member to write a recommendation it is best if the recommender understands the student both in the classroom and out. The student questionnaire provides fodder for the teacher to write a convincing, compelling essay of recommendation on behalf of the student. The student will find this under the “about me” tab.

Letter of Recommendation, Parent Questionnaire: Again, the more information provided the better the recommendation. Parents can offer a fresh perspective about their student and this information can help shape the recommendation. The parent will find this under the “about me” tab as well.

There are two types of recommendations: As stated above, recommendations play a critical role in the college application process. The most common recommendation is the Teacher Evaluation but students will also be required to submit a Secondary School Report (SSR). The Teacher Evaluation is self-explanatory where the student requests a recommendation from a former teacher whom they believe can give a compelling stamp of approval. This stamp of approval does not need to come from a student’s favorite teacher but may also be from a class in which the student struggled but persevered. The second type of recommendation is the SSR found in the Common Application (see distinction between applications). The SSR requires a recommendation to be written by someone who knows the student in the school setting but doesn’t necessarily know them academically. This is completed by advisors, club mentors, counselors, principals and so on. This person should be someone who can illuminate the student’s growth over time.

It is important to thank your teachers after your recommendation has been written and submitted.