• An Overview of PHS AVID

    What is AVID?

    AVID, Advancement via Individual Determination, is a system that prepares students for college readiness. This means that the AVID students don’t just graduate with the credits needed to attend college. They have a skill set that will help them succeed in the university setting. The AVID system helps students succeed in academically challenging classes through effective instruction campus wide and tutoring provided in the AVID elective class. “While many folks talk about what should be done to prepare students for college, AVID is doing it and has been for over 30 years." (www.avid.org)

    The AVID system is designed to help all students; however, we focus on students in the academic middle.  These students are passing their classes and have the desire to go to college, but they aren’t challenging themselves in the classroom. At PHS, our expectations are high and we have found that with the support of AVID, our students rise to the challenge. Our success rate speaks for itself; PHS has graduated 101 AVID students in the past four years. Of those students, 100% have applied to 4-year colleges or universities and over 80% of them were accepted. This year PHS will graduate 39 AVID students: 36 seniors and 3 early graduates. Six of the AVID students are in the top 10% of the graduating class. All of them have applied to college and over 50% of them have already received multiple acceptance letters.

    The  AVID Student

    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. At PHS, our AVID population represents the diversity of the entire campus. AVID pulls these students out of their unchallenging courses and puts them on the college track: acceleration instead of remediation.

    The AVID Elective

    The PHS AVID student is enrolled in one or more Pre-AP or AP classes, as well as the AVID elective class.  These students are enrolled in the most rigorous of classes and have a unique support system through AVID. In the elective class, they learn organizational skills, note-taking strategies, critical thinking and questioning methods, and receive help in tutorials. The students work on team building and motivational activities, as well. We research colleges and universities and probe the interests and talents of our students to find the right fit for post-secondary education.

    The AVID Curriculum

    The AVID curriculum runs on the WICOR method: writing, inquiry, collaboration, organization, and reading. Our AVID elective class creates a “toolbox” of skills in each of these areas to better prepare the students for the rigors of college. One may find examples of AVID strategies throughout the campus at PHS; our faculty believes in the AVID mission of “preparing all students for college readiness and success in a global society.”

    The AVID Faculty

    At PHS we have an active Site Team, a cohort of faculty who work with the AVID Coordinator to share strategies across the campus. This team consists of Administrators, Counselors, AP teachers, department heads, and faculty who embrace the AVID experience. We provide Professional Development training for the campus staff and promote using AVID strategies and best practices to most effectively guide students through the curriculum. Each summer, teachers travel to AVID Summer Institute to learn more about helping students navigate the rigors of high school and prepare for college.

    The AVID Tutor

    Tutors are essential to the success of the AVID elective class, where they facilitate student access to rigorous curriculum. As students from colleges and universities, tutors receive formal training and also serve as role models. The student to tutor ratio is no more than 7:1, which means your student will get personalized help by their peers and tutors to help with their advanced classes. AVID students who continue their education in college often return to the program as tutors.

    The AVID Parent

    AVID parents encourage their students to achieve academically, participate in AVID parent nights, and volunteer at monthly site team meetings.  It is imperative that parents maintain regular contact with the AVID coordinator to support the learning and growth that will lead to their student’s college readiness.

    For more information, please visit http://www.avid.org/

    Thanks for taking the time to consider applying to PHS AVID.


    Kim Winn, PHS AVID Coordinator