AVID Overview

  • What is AVID?

    Advancement via Individual Determination (AVID) is designed for middle and high school students in the middle who have the potential to succeed in a rigorous academic program if given both opportunity and support. AVID students are enrolled in rigorous courses (Pre-AP, Pre-IB, International Baccalaureate (IB), Advanced Placement (AP), enroll in magnet schools, and/or dual credit) and given academic and motivational support to successfully complete a challenging college preparatory course of study leading to four- year college enrollment. The program includes a regularly scheduled elective course which helps students improve academic and organizational skills, tutorials designed to increase higher-level thinking and success in rigorous courses, and motivational activities, guest speakers, and college and career exploration to focus students on college attendance. The program provides a redefined peer group focused on academic success; a team of teachers, counselors, and administrators dedicated to supporting AVID student academic progress; and a parent involvement component.

    AVID is based on 11 research-driven program essentials, AVID Essentials, which, when implemented according to program guidelines, show a college acceptance rate of 95% among AVID graduates nation-wide, a population of students which ordinarily would be unlikely to attend college.

    The Mission of AVID

    The mission of AVID is to ensure that ALL students, and most especially the least served students who

    1. will succeed in rigorous curriculum;
    2. will complete a rigorous college preparatory path;
    3. will enter mainstream activities of the school;
    4. will increase their enrollment in four-year colleges;
    5. will become educated and responsible participants and leaders in a democratic society.
    6. To enroll students in honors and advanced classes and to support them in being successful in a rigorous college preparatory program of studies.
    7. To help students develop the study habits and academic skills needed to succeed in college preparatory courses and college.
    8. To foster positive attitudes toward school and higher education.
    9. To help students become knowledgeable about colleges, develop a plan to get into college, research financial aid plans and scholarship programs, and apply to a variety of appropriate colleges and universities.
    10. To achieve enrollment in a four-year college or university upon graduation from high school.
    11. To ensure that the presidents and admission officers of public and private colleges and universities are aware of AVID and the caliber of AVID students.

    AVID's systemic approach is designed to support students and educators as they increase school wide/district wide learning and performance.

    El Paso ISD AVID Campus Websites


    • Bassett Middle School
    • Canyon Hills Middle School
    • Guillen Middle School
    • Henderson Middle School
    • Magoffin Middle School
    • Terrace Hills Middle School

    Who makes up the AVID site teams in a school?

    Each AVID school has a team that consists of an administrator, the AVID classroom teacher(s), a guidance counselor, and subject area teachers from each of the core areas. These site team members serve as advocates for AVID students and the AVID program and provide a collegial support group working to ensure the program's success.

    Principals provide instructional support and recognition, allocate resources to the AVID program, and ensure that the school's schedule and organization take into account the needs of the program. AVID teacher/coordinators teach the AVID classes and work with other teachers to monitor student progress and, with the support of the site team, oversee tutors, arrange motivational and enrichment activities, coordinate parent programs, and arrange for speakers and college tours. AVID teachers serve as site team coordinators and are responsible for overseeing the program and for sharing techniques with colleagues.

    Guidance counselors, working with AVID teachers, use AVID criteria to screen and select candidates for the program. They ensure that AVID students are placed in college preparatory classes. They assist the AVID teacher in monitoring the achievement of AVID students and in disseminating information about the program. Additionally, they assist the AVID teacher in securing guest speakers, arranging field trips, and conducting parent meetings.

    Subject area teachers from English, math, social studies, science, foreign language, and other subjects are trained in AVID program techniques, which they incorporate into their classroom instruction. They work with the AVID teacher to monitor student progress. A teacher from each core subject area serves on the AVID site team as an advocate for the AVID program and a liaison to the school community.

    Tutors, recruited from colleges and universities, are trained in AVID strategies including writing, reading, inquiry, and collaboration. They have an important role in challenging and supporting students and providing support to the AVID teacher.

    The AVID Student Profile

    AVID targets average students who have the potential to succeed in a rigorous academic program if given both opportunity and support. It is not a remedial program for failing students, nor is it a program for gifted students who are under-performing. Candidates for the AVID program are identified by counselors, teachers, parents and/or students themselves according to the following criteria:

    Ability–academic potential to succeed in college preparatory courses


    1. GPA of 2.0-3.5 in regular on-level classes
    2. Passing scores on State Assessments
    3. Enrollment in rigorous academic courses (Pre-AP, Pre-IB, IB, AP, Dual Credit)

    Desire and Determination


    • Desire to attend college
    • Willingness to undertake demanding preparation for college
    • Good attendance record
    • Appropriate classroom behavior and few or no discipline referrals
    • Willingness to give up another elective in order to reach their goals

    Membership in an under–served group

    1. Students in the middle who are receiving no other services
    2. Students who may be the first in their family to attend college
    3. Students who may be from groups historically less likely to attend college

    What kind of commitment do the students make to the AVID program?

    The AVID program requires hard work and perseverance and is effective only if participation is voluntary. Students must sign a contract agreeing to:

    • Enroll in AVID as an elective class.
    • Enroll in a rigorous course of study.
    • Study at least one to two hours a day and complete all assignments.
    • Maintain an organized AVID binder that includes class notes, study material, assignments, and completed work.
    • Participate in AVID tutorial groups.
    • Assist teachers and students in maintaining a positive learning environment.
    • Participate in AVID field trips and activities.
    • Take the PSAT and SAT or ACT in high school.
    • Apply for scholarships and/or financial air in the senior year
    • Apply to several colleges and universities in the senior year.

    Are students ever dismissed from the AVID program?

    Although AVID attempts to address a number of the issues that can get in the way of school success, there are occasions when students are not successful in the AVID program and the required college preparatory courses. Students may be removed from the AVID program if they are not fulfilling their contractual agreement and are not meeting with success in the AVID program. The AVID teacher and the AVID counselor discuss concerns with the student and his or her parents. If improvement is not seen in the student's performance and/or attitude, the student may be removed from the AVID program based on the following criteria:

    • Student does not do homework, keep an AVID notebook, complete assignments and/or prepare for classes.
    • Student is no longer enrolled in college preparatory classes (for example, a middle school student drops algebra or foreign language).
    • Student is a chronic absentee.
    • Student has disciplinary issues.
    • Student qualifies for services that more appropriately meet his/her needs.

    What role do parents and guardians play in AVID?

    The involvement of parents and guardians is a priority in AVID. AVID parents and guardians want their children to succeed and are an integral part of the learning team. As part of admission into the AVID program, parents and guardians are informed of the rigorous AVID curriculum and are required to sign a document of commitment to support their student. Parents and guardians are kept informed about program events and expectations through newsletters, telephone calls, and parent meetings.

    Parent/guardian meetings help build a strong adult peer group through which parents and guardians can encourage one another, share information, and become more involved in the overall school program.


    One of the pillars of the AVID program is the tutorial groups where students are supported in their rigorous coursework through the help of college level tutors. It is not a place where students do homework or have others review class content if they were absent or not paying attention. Students should be prepared with their notes, completed or partially-completed homework, and completed Tutorial Request Forms. The goals of a tutorial are:

    1. To teach students the skills needed to work collaboratively to solve problems.
    2. To empower students to answer their own questions by posing questions, which helps students to think more deeply about what they are learning.
    3. To guide students in high-level discussions as a means of developing vocabulary, enhancing discussion skills and fostering thought processes which enable students to succeed in their classes.
    4. To reinforce writing skills through review of notes, learning logs, essays, etc.