Q&A: 7 Things Parents Should Know about AVID
If you’re the parent of an iUniversity Prep student or you’re a prospective parent researching our school, you might already be aware that iUniversity Prep is an AVID campus - in fact, we’re proud to say that we’re the first virtual AVID school in the world!
But even if you’re somewhat familiar with AVID, you might not know exactly what AVID is all about, or how your student benefits from AVID’s instructional strategies. To find out more, let’s begin with a brief overview of the program’s background and purpose:
What is AVID?
Advancement Through Individual Determination (AVID) is both a school-wide curriculum and an elective course that’s designed to help students achieve optimum college readiness. While all schools and school districts teach AVID a little differently, the curriculum is based on a universal program that’s been used in classrooms across the country and around the world for more than 30 years. In fact, more than one million students participate in AVID each year.
AVID teaching strategies have a long track record of proven success - for example, during the most recent data-collection year, more than 38,000 AVID seniors outpaced the national average of enrolling in either a two or four-year college the first year after high school. AVID alumni also exceed national averages in “college persistence”, or continuing on to a second year of college after completion of a first.
Like all Grapevine-Colleyville ISD students, iUniversity Prep students are exposed to AVID concepts across our course catalog. AVID is also offered to iUniversity Prep students on an elective basis in grades six through 12.
What concepts are taught in AVID?
AVID curriculum is driven by the WICOR method, which stands for writing, inquiry, collaboration, organization and reading.
Many AVID teaching strategies center around self-determination, or the idea that students can learn how to access and harness their own willpower for academic success, especially once they’ve developed effective study, learning, and test-taking skills.
Other skills and concepts covered in AVID include:
Critical thinking skills (how to evaluate and process information)
Speaking and listening skills
Self-advocacy (how to appropriately and effectively ask for the things you want and need)
Are all iUniversity Prep students eligible to enroll in an AVID class?
iUniversity Prep students in grades six through 12 are eligible to take AVID as an elective. However, as mentioned earlier, AVID concepts are embedded into our school curriculum across all grade levels and courses. That means that all of our students receive the benefit of AVID instruction, even if they never sign up for an AVID elective.
Is AVID just for students who are having trouble in school?
Not at all. While AVID was designed with the needs of the underserved or underachieving student in mind, all students - including high-performing ones - can benefit from and improve skills through AVID instruction.
What kinds of activities take place during AVID lessons?
As is the case with all of our courses, iUniversity Prep teachers do a great job planning innovative and engaging classroom activities designed to further all of the AVID learning concepts mentioned earlier. These activities can cover just about anything, from a (live or virtual) field trip to a journal-writing prompt to a group research project and much more.
Will AVID help my child get better grades?
While many students find that their grades improve as a result of taking an AVID course, remember that AVID’s primary objective is to help students develop the skills necessary for a successful college career.
What’s the best way to find out more about AVID?
We first suggest you visit the AVID page on our school website, which is here. If you have questions, feel free to reach out to one of your child’s teachers or to contact Ms. Heath, our coordinator of academics.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Dr. Kaye Rogers received her Ph.D. in Educational Administration with a minor in Statistics from the University of North Texas. She earned her Master’s degree in Educational Leadership from Tarleton State University. A life-long Texan, she has taught math and science in public schools and also in Spain. She has worked in public education for over 18 years, where she is committed to innovation and choice for families. She has opened three choice schools and is currently the Director of Virtual Learning at Grapevine-Colleyville ISD, where she oversees their state-wide virtual school and blended schools program.
Learn more about iUniversity Prep and see if online learning is right for your child. Check us out at www.iuniversityprep.org or give us a call at 817-305-4895.
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