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Posted: April 5, 2019


In her weekly message, Supt. Reedy recognizes Truman Middle School for becoming an AVID National Demonstration School.

A 7th grade AVID class at Truman.

A 7th grade AVID class at Truman.

In 2009, five APS schools began offering AVID as an elective for under-served students who – with a little extra academic, social and emotional support – could be the first in their families to attend college.

A decade later, AVID (which stands for Advanced Via Individual Determination) has expanded to 29 of our middle and high schools with more than 2,000 students enrolled in the elective. Also, the program is in 19 elementary schools with four more slated to come on board in the fall.

I am proud to announce that one of our AVID schools, Truman Middle School, recently was named a National Demonstration School, one of only two in the state (the other being Capital High School in Santa Fe) and one of only a handful in the Southwest. Congratulations to Truman Principal Michele Torres, Truman’s AVID coordinator Margie Milburn, and district director Amy Mahr. This is truly a wonderful accomplishment!

As a demonstration school, educators from across the nation and around the world will be visiting Truman to see how they have successfully implemented the program not just through electives but across campus. As the AVID center validators put it, “Truman Middle School leadership uses the AVID College and Career Readiness System as the framework for success of ALL students. It is clear all faculty and staff have a vested interest in their students’ future by maintaining high academic and behavioral expectations, by displaying and discussing college and career readiness materials, and by developing a student-centered master schedule that prioritizes equitable access to AVID, rigorous courses, and Dual Language.”

Very nice!

As you know, one of my Big 5 priorities is to successfully prepare all of our students for college, careers and life. Truman and our other AVID schools are successfully meeting that expectation by teaching a variety of skills and attitudes to students who possess a desire to go to college and a willingness to work hard, but may not have the opportunity to be college-ready. Sounds like a lot of our students doesn’t it. 

Through AVID, these students are learning organizational and note-taking skills. They are asking questions, speaking publicly, studying more effectively. They are developing interpersonal skills, working together to solve problems, pushing past their comfort zones. They’re even visiting college campuses. 

Walk into any classroom at Truman or any of our other AVID schools and you’ll see students engaged, collaborating, using agendas, focused notetaking, interactive and academic notebooks, one-pagers, tutorials and more. Kudos to our own AVID department for providing regular professional development opportunities not only for AVID elective teachers but for all interested teachers in AVID schools. If you want to learn more about AVID in APS, follow them on Twitter: @APSAVID. There also was a nice story about the AVID program at Truman in a recent edition of the Albuquerque Journal.  

Of course, you don’t have to be an AVID school to successfully prepare our students for exciting futures. I know this type of creative teaching and loving support exists across Albuquerque Public Schools. Whatever you are doing to prepare our students for success after high school, you are appreciated! Keep up the good work.