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In support of Palo Alto Unified School District's (PAUSD) vision to "support all students as they prepare themselves to thrive as global citizens in a rapidly changing world," PAUSD's secondary schools have partnered with AVID National Organization. 

AVID’s mission is to close the achievement gap by preparing all students for college and career readiness in a global society.


Advancement Via Individual Determination (AVID)

  • AVID secondary is an approved elective course for grades 6-12 taken during the school day.
  • AVID is at all of the PAUSD middle and high schools.
  • Students are selected based on an application and interview process.
  • AVID elective students learn organizational and study skills, work on critical thinking and asking probing questions, get academic help from peers and college tutors and participate in enrichment and motivational activities that make college and careers attainable.
  • AVID students are typically required to enroll in at least one of their school's most rigorous academic classes, such as Honors or AP.
  • AVID secondary improves students' self-image as well as helping them to become academically successful students and leaders and role models on their campus.


  • AVID's curriculum is based on rigorous standards developed by middle and high school teachers in collaboration with college professors.
  • WICOR methodology - Writing, Inquiry, Collaboration, Organization, and Reading
  • AVID instructional strategies engage students and scaffold instruction to make challenging content accessible


Tutors are essential to the success of the AVID elective class as tutors facilitate student access to rigorous curriculum.  Tutors are role models of successful college students and are certified through a 16 hour training series.

College Visits

AVID students visit several colleges each year.  The campus tours and educational experience help students make real-life connections to the college experience and ensure a belief that college is an achievable goal.

More Information

The AVID Referral Process includes teacher recommendation, student application and interview and parent input. Contact your school counselor, go to AVID's website, or visit the district's AVID web page for more information.