AVID stands for Advancement Via Individual Determination and extends beyond just a program to the “hows” and “whys” to teaching, learning, and supporting students.

AVID: Advancement Via Individual DeterminationAVID’s mission as a national organization is to close the opportunity gap (the differences in opportunities presented to students – support, access to resources, highly-effective instruction, role models, culturally-relevant instruction, and high expectations) by preparing every student for college readiness and success in a global society. Students in the program are often those who will be the first of their family to attend college and are from groups traditionally underrepresented in higher education. Using an inquiry-based and student-centric program that introduces such concepts as  Cornell note-taking and Socratic seminars the program goes beyond the classroom requiring students to participate in their schools and take part in community service.

Desert Sands Unified School District’s goal to achieve the program district-wide is a commitment to aligning district resources and supporting quality, sustainable K-12 schoolwide implementation for the purpose of reducing variability so that all schools have access to and success with rigorous instructional experiences.

AVID: Advancement Via Individual Determination

DSUSD School Board President Gary Tomak participates in an AVID Socratic Seminar.

As DSUSD implements the college readiness system, it becomes so much more than best practices or strategies. District-wide college, career, and life skills become the foundation of an invigorating culture. A culture that supports students with rigorous coursework, as they learn organizational and study skills, develop critical thinking, learn to ask probing questions, receive academic help from peers and college tutors, exposure to college opportunities through college field trips, and participate in enrichment and motivational activities to make their college dreams reality.

DSUSD dedication to supporting our educators and providing professional development opportunities was evident at AVID summer institutes in Anaheim, San Diego, and Tampa this summer. Sites were able to send 164 administrators and staff members to various strands intensive three-day trainings. The summer institutes provide annual professional learning created to help educators learn the latest in methodologies and strategies to successfully implement the first rated national college readiness program in their schools.

AVID: Advancement Via Individual Determination

Senior Director of Elementary Curriculum, Instruction, and Assessment Michael Wilhite meets with parents about the AVID programSenior Director of Elementary Curriculum, Instruction, and Assessment Michael Wilhite meets with parents about the AVID program.

#DSUSDisAVID for 2020 currently thrives in all four of our comprehensive high schools:  La Quinta, Shadow Hills, Indio, and Palm Desert. At the middle school level, all seven have implemented AVID school-wide in addition to offering the elective and are currently piloting the AVID Excel Program that supports the needs of our English language learners and opening more doors to college and career readiness. At the K-5 level, Abraham Lincoln Elementary School implemented AVID school-wide, training all teachers on site and receiving their certification from AVID Center. This year three additional elementary sites, Dr. Reynaldo J. Carreon Jr., James Monroe, and Martin Van Buren joined our DSUSD Advancement Via Individual Determination family implementing schoolwide AVID.

The vision in Desert Sands is to impact instruction districtwide, to increase rigor in every classroom, and to improve student achievement for all students.  Advancement Via Individual Determination is not just a series of high leverage strategies but a way of being, of doing education that promotes rigor for every student and not only opens doors but keeps them open.

Top Photo Caption: Students from the Advancement Via Individual Determination program at Palm Desert Charter Middle School were presented their success at an event featuring all DSUSD AVID schools.

(Resource www.avid.org)