(Little Rock, Ark.) – More than 200 educators gathered for a two-day AVID training at Mills High School in Little Rock. From principals to teachers to counselors, these educators will learn how to shift their school culture to a more equitable, student-centered approach.
AVID, Advancement Via Individual Determination, prepares all students for college, careers and life. There are only a handful of school districts in Arkansas that currently use the AVID approach to education. Pulaski County Special School District will officially launch AVID in the 2019-2020 school year district wide.
During this two-day training, more than 175 educators from PCSSD were joined by trainers from AVID as well as representatives from five other school districts in the state. Little Rock, Jacksonville North Pulaski, Forrest City and Pine Bluff school districts were all invited to attend. PCSSD is the only school district in the state to offer the national AVID training. There were nine different training sessions taking place each day divided among groups for elementary, secondary and counselors as well as individual subjects like mathematics, social studies and history.
“Our first AVID Training was a tremendous success! Positive comments were heard from our teachers, administrators as well as the AVID National Staff Development Team. [They] praised our professional staff for their professionalism and thrust for learning,” said Dr. Janice Warren, Assistant Superintendent of Equity and Pupil Services. “Even our business/community partners praised us and thanked us for including them. One partner was amazed and returned the second day just to be a part of the excitement.”
Local businesses and community groups attending to learn more about the AVID implementation. Nearly a dozen representatives from Donaldson Scholars, Joshua Intervenors, McAlmont Neighborhood Watch, PARK (Positive Atmosphere Reaches Kids), Pfeifer Camp, Pulaski County Youth Services and TENDAJI attended the training.
AVID continues to gain popularity across the nation as more than 7,000 schools in 47 states implement its structure. 94% of AVID students complete four-year college entrance requirements, 75% are from low-income households and 56% have parents who did not attend college. This approach to learning provides opportunities for all students, and especially those who may not have considered higher education as an option after graduation.
“It’s exciting to see this group of professionals work toward getting our young people college-eligible and that every child gets the right to choose and not have their lives chosen for them,” says Dr. McNulty, PCSSD superintendent. “This is the beginning of an amazing pathway to equity and excellence.”
AVID is a nonprofit organization that provides educators with proven, real-world strategies to accelerate the performance of historically underserved students so that these students and all students across the entire campus succeed in college, career and life.