Local News

AVID Program Praised For Getting More Students To College

Posted March 8, 2005 4:38 a.m. EST

— As North Carolina works to figure out how to fund an education mandate from the courts, a Wake County Superior Court judge is looking for programs that work. One program that is making a difference is now being held up as a model across the state.

After five years in the AVID program, which stands for Advancement Via Individual Determination, senior Karysha Reid is on top. She has already been accepted at two colleges.

"The AVID program has taught me how to advocate for myself and it's also helped me to learn to survive in the real world," she said.

"I participate in class a lot more now. I used to be quiet in class and not care. I used to be fine with just Cs, but now I'm getting As and Bs.

Nine years ago, the Chapel Hill/Carrboro school district pioneered the program in North Carolina. Sixteen school districts followed. The program takes mostly minority students with average grades and teaches them everything from how to study to how to fill out college applications.

"The goal is to make students understand they, too, can have a piece of the pie, which is to be successful," program coordinator Joanne McClelland said.

In Chapel Hill, 100 percent of the students who go through the AVID program are accepted to four-year colleges. Durham and Cumberland counties already have the program. Wake County plans to add it in 23 middle schools in the fall.