OHS revalidated as AVID National Demonstration School

Odessa High School leadership and students learned that they have been revalidated as an AVID National Demonstration School.

The announcement was made in the OHS library after a visit by national AVID officials Tim Bias and Ellen Nickerson. Top district officials also were on hand.

“I’m very pleased with the dedication and commitment by both the OHS AVID Site Team, leadership and the students in working to reach the highest honor of being an AVID National Demonstration School for three more years,” Ector County Independent School District AVID Director Dianne Mata said in an email. “It takes an entire team to make this happen. They certainly shined in all areas their instruction, systems in place, as well their leadership and culture of the school. I am very proud of their determination and hard work to continue being a model site for AVID.”

AVID, which stands for Advancement Via Individual Determination, is a college preparation program aimed at at-risk students. Bias and Nickerson reviewed the good points of the AVID program and what can be improved upon.

AVID helps students with organizational skills, time management and note taking, among other things.

Bias said the strategies at OHS are well used and the scheduling is student centered. He said the campus leadership at the campus and district level provides good support to the program.

He added that he also was impressed with the culture and level of hospitality he and Nickerson experienced. Nickerson said they were greeted by mariachi music when they arrived Tuesday morning.

With the revalidation, Texas state Director of AVID Patrick Briggs said OHS will remain an AVID national demonstration school for another three years.

OHS AVID Coordinator Naomi Fuentes said AVID representatives look through student data and determine whether the campus should still hold the title of a national demonstration site.

Fuentes said the designation is prestigious because there are few high schools in the country, especially the size of OHS, that have national demonstration site status.

Fuentes said she was breathing a sigh of relief after the visit.

“I love how the entire school came together to make this happen. I’m glad it’s over, but now we have to prepare for growth and more amazing things for our students here at OHS,” Fuentes said.

Nickerson said it’s now up to the campus to keep improving. She said she would like to see the percentage of boys in the program increase.

She added that they want to ensure students are prepared for the highest level of rigor when they graduate and make sure they are prepared to take the next step in life. Nickerson also challenged teachers to bring more students into tutorials and increase focus on note taking so they show what students are learning and the learning process, and she wanted expectations to be consistent from classroom to classroom.

Fuentes said there are about 370 students in the AVID program at Odessa High, but she said there are probably a little more now.

Odessa High School Principal Mauricio Marquez talks about the campus being recognized again as an AVID National Demonstration School.

Ruth Campbell|Odessa American

Just The Facts
  • Overall according to 2016 Texas Education Agency information, ECISD Superintendent Tom Crowe said 61 percent of George H.W. Bush New Tech Odessa Students are attending a two- or four-year school and 84 percent of those have a 2.0 GPA or higher and no remediation.
  • Fifty-five percent of students from OHS are attending a two or four-year college. Some 82 percent of those students have a 2.0 GPA or higher and no remediation.
  • Fifty-six percent of Permian High School students attend a two or four-year college and 88 percent of those have a 2.0 GPA or higher and no remediation.
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