Marshall ISD’s AVID (Advancement Via Individual Determination) Program, in its third year at Marshall High School, continues to grow exponentially as students experience breakthroughs in performance and college aspirations.
The AVID Program’s annual report, presented during Monday night’s meeting of the MISD Board of Trustees by Dr. Rebeca Cooper, Assistant Superintendent for Leadership and Learning, indicates a steady rate of growth in both numbers and student performance, with the program’s first class of freshmen set to graduate in 2017.
“Our mission at MISD with our AVID Program is to ensure the educational success of all students and to close the achievement gap by preparing all students for college readiness,” said Dr. Cooper while presenting a powerpoint presentation of the program’s growth in MISD over the last three years.
MISD implemented the AVID Program at Marshall High School in the fall of 2013, with an initial class of 30 freshmen. Two years later, the program now includes 122 students with an estimated 175 expected to be involved in the program in the 2016-2017 school year.
Dr. Cooper said plans are in place to extend the AVID Program to Marshall Junior High as an elective class, to further provide benefits of the program which targets students in the academic “middle” when it comes to college readiness. The program is designed to increase the number of students who enroll in higher education, and who succeed in higher education and beyond.
“Research shows that academically well-prepared students are likely to graduate from college regardless of their social background,” Dr. Cooper said.
The growth of the program under AVID District Director Mrs. Shirley Fletcher and AVID teacher Mrs. Sharon Dews has been remarkable. In 2013-2014, 21 of the 30 students enrolled in the program were taking Pre-AP or AP classes. This year, the third year of the program, 104 of the 122 students are enrolled in Pre-AP or AP classes. Five AVID juniors – members of the original freshman class – are now enrolled in college dual credit courses.
To further highlight that accomplishment, 82 percent of current AVID students had no previous enrollment in advanced courses at MHS, Dr. Cooper said.
During the course of the program, AVID students have consistently performed at a higher percentage rate when compared to their peers, in both grades and attendance. In college entrance exams such as the ACT and PSAT, AVID students also have performed at a higher rate than students in the general population at MHS, with a 100 percent passage rate for AVID students on the ACT test compared to 61 percent of non-AVID students.
Dr. Cooper noted that all AVID juniors are registered to participate in the ACT test free of charge, with an ACT prep class being offered to AVID juniors. Thirty-five of the 48 AVID students classified as juniors are signed up for the prep class, Dr. Cooper said.
As of Monday’s presentation, 97.9 percent of AVID III (current juniors) have passed all of the End-of-Course (EOC) requirements for graduation.
Next steps for the program according to Dr. Cooper are to deepen AVID Best Practices school-wide at MHS; continue district professional training through the AVID Summer Institute; increase Summer Institute participation; enhance the AVID program district-wide; attend leadership training for directors; an AVID elective teacher/coordinator workshop; and implementation at Marshall Junior High.
For more information regarding the AVID Program, contact the MISD Department of Leadership and Learning at 903-927-8811.