AVID Helps Make College A Reality

Wednesday, June 19, 2019

All parents have aspirations that their child will do better than they have in life. While some parents may have the financial means to send their child to college, others may think college is out of reach.  PVSchools is helping to make the reach to college a reality for many elementary, middle and high school students with the Advancement Via Individual Determination (AVID) program.

AVID is a college readiness program designed to increase the number of students who enroll in four-year colleges and to close the achievement gap. The program is intended for students in the academic middle - B, C and D students - who are often under-represented and will be the first generation college students. “These students are capable of completing rigorous curriculum but are falling short of their academic potential. Often times, they will be the first in their families to attend college and many are from socioeconomically disadvantaged families,” said Laura Anderson, coordinator for AVID Elementary and Secondary.

AVID trains teachers to use proven practices in order to prepare students for successes in high school, college and career. The intent is for teachers to prepare and encourage students to take Advanced Placement (AP) and Honors courses and move on to be successful in college. AVID elective teachers and core content area teachers use AVID resources aligned with the curriculum standards in their subject areas. All of the students in an AVID school benefit from the training received by the teachers, counselors and administrators.

At the elementary level, AVID strategies are embedded throughout the school day rather than a separate class. Writing, Inquiry, Collaboration, Organization and Reading to Learn (WICOR) strategies are taught. “When students advance to the middle school, they are prepared and well organized, take Cornell notes and have a mindset to attend college,” said Ms. Anderson.

At the middle and high school levels, the AVID College Readiness System works to ensure students are college ready by equipping them with skills, academic behaviors and college knowledge necessary to succeed at every level. “AVID help students develop a vision for their future, gain confidence in their abilities and take ownership for their learning and AVID elective classes specifically address these skills,” said Ms. Anderson.

In 2005, PVSchools implemented the AVID program at four schools. Today, the AVID program has expanded to seven schools, including Aire Libre Elementary, Palomino Intermediate, Greenway Middle, Shea Middle, Vista Verde Middle, North Canyon High and Shadow Mountain High. North Canyon is also an AVID National Demonstration School, which less than 2 percent of the 4,500 AVID schools receive this designation.

A Snapshot of PVSchools AVID Statistics:

  • 97 percent of students who have taken an AVID elective for three years graduate high school
  • 95 percent of students who take AVID apply to a four-year college or university
  • 85 percent of those students who apply to a four-year college or university are accepted
  • 71 percent of students have submitted applications for FAFSA or State Financial Aid
  • 100 percent of AVID student complete the high school requirements for college entrance requirements

During the 2014-15 school year, PVSchools had:

  • 200 middle school students take AVID as an elective
  • 400 high school students take AVID as an elective
  • AVID strategies are used school-wide and affect many more students


Avid Site Coordinator, Helen Begay
Principal, Andrea Morici
You can also contact the school to discuss AVID opportunities at (602) 449-5300.