AVID: The Greatest Support System in Education

Blake Harwell, AVID Tutor and Senior at San Diego State University

Last week, President Obama took to the podium in a joint session of Congress to update the American people on where the United States stands. His very first words exclaimed, “Today in America, a teacher spent extra time with a student who needed it and did her job to lift America’s graduation rate to its highest level in three decades.” The president touched on a very important cornerstone within the field of education. For students to be successful, they need to learn in an environment where they can be effectively supported and challenged. Over the past 12 years, I have had the privilege to see how AVID creates that foundation of support as an AVID student, as an AVID tutor, and now, as part of the newly formed AVID Alumni Association.

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Opportunities Matter  

By Corey Hardiman, AVID Alumnus

As a young man from the horrifying streets of Chicago, to a soon-to-be Morehouse man—I am reminded of what America has to offer when we work hard as individuals and as a country to create opportunities. Hard-working people should have opportunities in America. President Obama reinforced this sentiment a week ago in his State of the Union address.

Our country has to reshape the job market to enable my generation to push for an education through hard work, so we can graduate and have great opportunities in our very own communities. We, as a country, cannot progress if we cannot set aside our political ideologies and understand that affording each and every citizen in America the opportunity to succeed is a priority.

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AVID: A Game-Changer

By Sean McComb, English and AVID Teacher, Patapsco High School & Center for the Arts

Sean McComb is the 2014 Maryland Teacher of the Year and one of four National Teacher of the Year Award finalists.

The AVID program forever changed the trajectory of my teaching career with two words: voluntary participation.

I traditionally teach students English, by certification and assignment. Those courses begin with an understanding that the students have to be there and they have to pass in order to graduate. I was asked to take over a fledgling AVID site as both the program and I were completing our first year at Patapsco High School & Center for the Arts. With AVID, I had to operate under a new paradigm. I would have to create an academic environment so supportive and appealing that students would choose to return to it for four consecutive years.

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In the Classroom: Setting House Rules

By Craig McKinney, AVID Teacher and Staff Developer

With more than 4,900 schools adopting AVID, we thought it would be fun to share what’s going on in AVID classrooms across the country.  Here is what one school is doing. What are you doing to enrich your classrooms?  Share your ideas and best practices in the comment section below.  Need more space?  Contact us and we may feature your AVID idea in a future blog.

“Since I’m the first person to pass ‘Go’ with a roll of double sixes, I get to send one person of my choice to jail.  I choose you!”

“What?  That’s not a rule!”

“Well, that’s how we play it at our house.”

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College Tours: Searching For the Perfect Fit

By Albert Jimenez, AVID Student, Valley Center High School

Talking to my mother in September, I brushed off the topic of college visits—labeling them as an unnecessary waste of time. I felt that the only important factor in choosing schools was academic ranking. Nevertheless, I was dragged by mother’s intuition to the east coast to look at campuses. As soon as I set foot on the first campus, my opinion changed.

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