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AVID Elementary is now available at 23 schools.

College-focused AVID program expands to elementary schools

October 31, 2017

The study skills and college-preparatory program AVID, a popular elective in both high school and middle school, has expanded to 23 elementary schools. And the students love it!

“My favorite thing about AVID is that it helps me plan for my future and helps me get ready for college when I grow up,” said Kirsten from Caitlin Rodriguez’s class at Seminole Elementary.

“AVID is helping me prepare for college by teaching me to be more organized and productive,” said Louis from Sandra Guadalupe’s class at Davis Elementary. “I feel it will make a difference in my learning and then I will be able to have any career I want when I grow up.”

Ciara at Davis loves her huge AVID binder, a staple of the program that promotes organization.

“It lets me be extremely organized and prepared,” she said. “I have a notebook and folder for every subject, like a red notebook and red folder for reading. I also have more desk space because my papers are not all over my desk.”

Academic Programs Supervisor Jazheel Lenegar-Brown said organization may be the most obvious benefit during the start of AVID Elementary: “Schools are encouraged to prioritize what they want to focus on and many have chosen organization or mindset as their ‘big rock’ for the first semester.”

But there are others advantages, too. AVID is research-based and its curriculum and strategies are aimed at improving both motivation and student achievement. Guadalupe said she has noticed a change in her classroom at Davis.

“I absolutely love AVID,” said the veteran teacher. “The program has helped me to establish a truly powerful and positive learning space for my students. It has empowered me with a plethora of ideas and tools. The students are given the tools for success and walk into the classroom prepared and ready to learn. They are loved, respected and held to high standards. I am proud to be part of a very motivated and happy AVID family.”

In her classroom at Davis, students pass daily reminders about getting ready for college, including a black graduation robe and photos from Guadalupe’s own commencement. Her student Ilia has noticed the changes around the room.

“My favorite thing about AVID is that my classroom is an awesome place to learn,” she said. “It's colorful and there are lots of positive signs and posters everywhere I look. I feel happy all the time and I also believe I am intelligent. I know I can reach any dream I have for my future.”

In Rodriguez’s classroom, students recently collaborated on a research and writing assignment, which Savannah loved.

“My favorite thing about AVID is synergizing,” she said. “If you don’t work together, sometimes you can be wrong and through life you have to work together.”

Rodriguez, meanwhile, prefers how the AVID program has planted a seed in many of her students’ minds.

“AVID orients the students to starting thinking about going to college,” she said. “Usually in elementary school, college is not the biggest focus. I think it is wonderful that we are starting that conversation with the students. It gives them the opportunity to think about their future and what steps they need to take in order to be successful.”

Her student Celeste predicts AVID will do just that.

“AVID,” she said, “will prepare me for college because I will know all the strategies for being a successful student and then get a job and live my life.”

AVID is currently offered at 23 Title I elementary schools: Alexander, Cannella, Chiaramonte, Clair Mel, Cork, Cypress Creek, Davis, Ippolito, Kingswood, Knights, Lee, Lewis, Mango, Mendenhall, Oak Grove, Ruskin, Seminole, Schmidt, Temple Terrace, Thonotosassa, Trapnell, West Shore and Yates. The program also has been in place at several K-8 schools: Rampello, Roland Park and Tinker.

AVID stands for Advancement Via Individual Determination. To learn more about AVID, click here.

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