Advancement Via Individual Determination (AVID)
What is AVID?
AVID, Advancement Via Individual Determination, is a college readiness system for elementary through higher education that is designed to increase schoolwide learning and performance. The AVID College Readiness System (ACRS) accelerates student learning, uses research based methods of effective instruction, provides meaningful and motivational professional learning, and acts as a catalyst for systemic reform and change.
AVID is an elementary through postsecondary college readiness system that is designed to increase school wide learning and performance. AVID focuses on the least-served students in the academic middle. The formula is simple: raise expectations of students and, with the AVID support system in place, they will rise to the challenge. AVID targets students in the academic middle - B, C, and even D students - who have the desire to go to college and the willingness to work hard. These are students who are capable of completing rigorous curriculum but are falling short of their potential.
“While others talk about what should be done to prepare students for college, AVID is doing it. For more than 30 years, the AVID College Readiness System has helped thousands of students, many of whom are overlooked and underserved, rise above the obstacles they face to achieve academic success.”
AVID began in 1980 by Mary Catherine Swanson, then-head of the English department at San Diego's Clairemont High School. The federal courts issued an order to desegregate the city's schools, bringing large numbers of inner city students to suburban schools. While applauding the decision, Swanson wondered how these underserved students would survive at academically acclaimed Clairemont High. Her answer was AVID, an academic elective. But it's more than a program - it's a philosophy: Hold students accountable to the highest standards, provide academic and social support, and they will rise to the challenge.
AVID in North Kansas City Schools
In the spring of 2011, the North Kansas City Board of Education approved bringing the AVID program to all of our secondary schools. Building administrators hired AVID coordinators and invited interested teachers and counselors to join them at the AVID Summer Institute. We now have over 500 students enrolled in the AVID elective course and every secondary school is using AVID strategies across their buildings.
For one period a day, students learn organizational and study skills, work on critical thinking and asking probing questions, get academic help from peers and college tutors, and participate in enrichment and motivational activities that make college seem attainable. The AVID curriculum is driven by the WICOR method, which stands for Writing, Inquiry, Collaboration, Organization and Reading.