AVID Center

At a Glance

National Office: 
9246 Lightwave Avenue #200
San Diego, CA 92123
Phone: 858-380-4800

Dr. Sandy Husk
People Served: 
Year Founded: 
Tax ID: 

Focus area(s):

Teacher & Principal Training
K-12 Reform
College Access


AVID, Advancement Via Individual Determination, is a global nonprofit organization that operates with one guiding principle: Hold students accountable to the highest standards, provide academic and social support, and they will rise to the challenge. AVID’s kindergarten through higher education system brings research-based curriculum and strategies to students each day to develop critical thinking, literacy, and math skills across all content areas. For more than 35 years, AVID has prepared students for college and career readiness and success in a global society. 

Impact and Outcomes

AVID impacts over 1.2 million students in grades K–16 each year.
AVID is implemented in more than 5,700 secondary and elementary schools and higher education institutions in 44 states and 16 countries/territories as of the 2015-2016 school year.
Most AVID students are underrepresented minorities: 51% are Hispanic and 17% are African-American. Nearly 64% qualify for the federal Free and Reduced-Price Lunch program. Many AVID students do not have a college-going tradition in their families.
77% of 2015 AVID seniors reported taking at least one rigorous course, such as AP®, IB® or Cambridge®, with 65% taking the corresponding exam.
92% of 2015 AVID seniors reported plans to attend a postsecondary institution: 61% to a four-year college and 31% to a two-year institution.
AVID graduates persist into year 2 of college at higher rates: 85% for AVID students overall versus 78% for U.S. overall—which is remarkable considering AVID’s population is largely comprised of students typically underrepresented in higher education.
AVID provides over 60,000 training units to educators each year on how to implement the AVID system and utilize its research-based instructional methodologies in all classes.

Mission & Goals

AVID’s mission is to close the achievement gap by preparing all students for college readiness and success in a global society. AVID has proven to be one of the most effective ways to impact the trajectory of student success in post-secondary work—especially those who are underrepresented in college.


Starting with the founder’s vision in 1980, AVID has evolved from one high school elective class to the comprehensive, schoolwide AVID College Readiness System impacting students from kindergarten through college graduation. AVID helps students develop a vision for their future and gain confidence in their abilities as they learn the academic and life skills they will need to move forward in school and life.


AVID Center is committed to scaling the system schoolwide and districtwide in targeted regions and urban centers in order to achieve its goal of serving two million students annually by 2020.


Learn more at www.avid.org.


AVID is inherently a grassroots system dependent on the commitment and leadership of teachers and administrators at each school and within each district to ensure system implementation at the highest level of fidelity. Success using the AVID College Readiness System is measured by student achievement in key data points and the culture shifts on each school campus towards equity, access to rigorous coursework, and college readiness for all students.

AVID Center provides the system tools, professional development and on-going support, coaching, and motivation to educators at each school and within districts. At training events and through online presentations, AVID Center also provides access to a network of educators implementing its system across regions of the United States to share best practices and successes.

The AVID College Readiness System impacts all students through three programs:

AVID Elementary is designed as an embedded sequential academic skills program in each grade level K-8 for a schoolwide effect that brings a greater awareness of the path to college while building skills such as organization, critical reading, writing, and inquiry.

AVID Secondary provides academic support and enrichment to students via the AVID Elective course and by implementing AVID instructional methodologies, curriculum resources, and best practices in content area classes across school campuses to create a schoolwide college-going culture.

AVID for Higher Education offers a holistic, integrated college-success system designed for students with the determination to succeed and for campuses committed to promoting student success.

AVID system components include:  

  • The creation of an AVID site team that writes an annual site plan, implements the program, provides peer support to its members, and trains and models to other teachers on site
  • A staff member from the district or higher education institution designated as AVID District Director, who allocates time to oversee program implementation to ensure quality
  • Academic support and instruction to students delivered by teachers trained in research-based AVID methodologies known as WICOR (Writing, Inquiry, Collaboration, Organization, & Reading)
  • AVID curriculum materials and resources incorporating WICOR strategies and best practices developed and tested over 30 years
  • AVID structure and activities that promote a sense of AVID family for the students, engage parents and the community, and create campus-wide college readiness
  • Exceptional professional development for educators, including the annual three-day Summer Institute; regional trainings in AVID methodologies; and ongoing coaching, support, and resources including online seminars
  • The comprehensive AVID data collection and certification system demonstrated to give districts and schools the data they need to support students and make improvements.


AVID Center currently works with over 5,700 schools. The organization has over 35 years of experience building and embedding its college readiness system in school districts of all sizes in communities of varying socio-economic and population levels. AVID today impacts more than 1.2 million students per year in 44 states and 16 countries and provides nearly 40,000 educators with proven, real-world strategies to accelerate student performance each year.

AVID significantly closes the achievement gaps between groups of students. About 92% of AVID students complete course requirements for admission to a four-year college or university, compared to 36% nationally. The proportions of AVID students who completed these course loads were nearly consistent for each sub-group of students, with a gap of only 3 percentage points from the highest performing to the lowest. That gap nationally is 28 percentage points.

The academic success of AVID students helps close the achievement gap in other ways as well (AVID Center, 2015; U.S. Department of Education, Institute of Education Sciences, National Center for Education Statistics. (2013); California Department of Education, 2008; Texas Education Agency, 2014; CREATE, 2000, 2002; Mehan et al., 1996):

  • AVID students are more likely to take algebra in eighth grade—55% of grade 8 AVID students compared to 48% nationwide. Students who take algebra in eighth grade are prepared for more advanced coursework in math and science in high school. They are more likely to attend and graduate from college than eighth graders who do not take algebra.
  • Underrepresented students participating in AVID are much more likely to take Advanced Placement (AP) tests; while only 24% of African American students across the U.S. take AP tests, 58% of African American AVID students do so; while 37% of the nation’s Hispanic students take AP tests, 69% of Hispanic AVID students take them.
  • AVID students are more likely to graduate from high school; 99% of AVID high school seniors graduate from high school.
  • At least 78% of AVID high school seniors are accepted to two- or four-year colleges. Minority students who participate in AVID are much more likely to enroll in a four-year college. Over half (56%) of the African-American students who participated in AVID enrolled in four-year colleges, compared to a national average of 41%, and 47% of the Latino students who participated in AVID enrolled in four-year colleges, compared to the national average of 30%.
  • AVID graduates’ high enrollment and persistence rates in college are relatively stable across multiple graduating classes as demonstrated below.



AVID Graduates 2010 n=22,600

AVID Graduates 2011 n=27,766

AVID Graduates 2012 n=32,987

Enrolled in college first academic year following HS graduation







Persisted by enrolling in 2nd year




Persisted by enrolling in 3rd year




Persisted by enrolling in 4th year




  • AVID graduates persist in college at rates that outpace peers and national cohorts. Noted above, 88% of the AVID graduates of 2011 who enrolled in college within the first academic year after high school persisted into their second year. This figure is much higher than the national first to second year persistence rate of 77%, reported by the National Student Clearinghouse (2015 Persistence-Retention Snapshot Report).
  • Persistence into the second year of college is relatively stable across ethnic groups and students of low socio-economic status as demonstrated below.

Class of 2011 College Persistence Into Year 2 by Student Group (Fall-to-Fall)

  AVID research, data and references can be found on Research page on its website. 

Growth Plan

First and foremost, AVID is serious about closing the achievement gap. AVID Center's goal is to strengthen the impact and quality of the AVID system by making it more accessible and affordable, implementing in more school sites, and impacting more students. AVID seeks to impact two million students annually by 2020.


AVID is a cost effective solution to helping students and turning around school culture. Below are examples of ways that foundations, corporations, and individuals can invest in AVID’s mission:

  • Investors can support their local schools directly with donations designated for AVID to fund tutors, college trips, and teacher training.
  • Investors can impact communities by partnering with AVID to deepen and expand the system throughout a district, city, and region with AVID in grades K–16.
  • AVID Center has the capacity to scale its system quickly and effectively so that investors can impact multiple schools, districts, and communities when investing in AVID expansion.

AVID Center is a global nonprofit headquartered in San Diego, California with division offices in Dallas, Texas; Denver, Colorado; and Orlando, Florida. AVID has approximately 250 employees and a cadre of over 400 experienced professional development and coaching consultants providing training and support to schools.

AVID Center operations and program services are funded through earned income from membership fees; professional development registrations for training events including AVID’s 12 Summer Institutes held in 11 cities; and sales of curriculum materials. Grants from foundations, corporations, and government entities provide restricted funding for projects, program expansion, and trainings.

Strategic priorities for AVID Center are as follows:

Priority 1: Expand AVID Implementation by increasing the number of AVID secondary schools and school districts while retaining current AVID school sites.

Priority 2: Deepen AVID Implementation to reach more students through AVID Schoolwide so that every teacher and every student use AVID methodologies and strategies to teach and learn.

Priority 3: Expand the AVID Elementary pipeline in grades K–8 in current AVID sites and add more elementary schools to create full K–12 feeder patterns in districts.

Priority 4: Increase access to AVID training and resources through technology and digital resources to reduce costs for schools by reducing the number of off-site training days.

Growth Goals

AVID Center has received indications of significant interest from many schools and districts that would like to implement the AVID College Readiness System if they could obtain the funding to cover the first three years of start-up costs. The following growth goals are estimates based on the state of funding available to school districts:

  • Add at least 350 new secondary sites each year
  • Add at least 250 new elementary sites each year
  • Retain at least 95% of existing sites each year in all states.

Location of Sites

National Office: 
9246 Lightwave Avenue #200
San Diego, CA 92123
Phone: 858-380-4800
List of locations

To make a contribution to a program site:

  1. Click on the "Make a Contribution Now" button and include the name, city and state of the program you would like to support, in the "notes" text box on the organization's donation form, if available.
  2. If a "notes" or "designation" box is not available, write the city and state on your check in the "notes" section or call the national office to designate your contribution to a local program site.

Locations in the following states:

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Major Funders

AT&T Foundation

BelleJAR Foundation

Bush Foundation

Citi Foundation

College Spark

Michael & Susan Dell Foundation

Draper Family Foundation

Florida Partnership/College Board®

Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation

Rosalinde and Arthur Gilbert Foundation

Houston Endowment

JPMorgan Chase Foundation

Meadows Foundation

Meyer Memorial Trust

James F. & Marion L. Miller Foundation

Nike Social Innovation Fund

Orange County Community Foundation

Oregon Community Foundation

I. A. O’Shaughnessy Foundation

Ralph M. Parsons Foundation

Platinum Equity

TG Philanthropy

U.S. Department of Education – i3 Development grant

Wells Fargo Foundation