Pupils for Profit

AVID in Need of Tutors


Photo Courtesy of Ty Cathey

Since the beginning of COVID-19, the number of tutors for the AVID program has dropped off. “We can’t really even do tutorials without tutors; it’s really just asking a friend for help,” AVID student Camdyn Davis said. “I’d really like to have tutors because when we had them it was always really easy to learn stuff I didn’t know.”

Ty Cathey, Reporter

Students now have the potential to earn $15 an hour or community service hours for tutoring their peers.

The AVID (Advancement via Individual Determination) program, since the start of the pandemic, has seen a lack of tutors and has been limited to the help of other students in the program. Before the pandemic, AVID had one to two tutors for a class, making learning and college applications go smoother.

In order to fill the gap, students are being offered the opportunity to have a small job as an AVID tutor. 

“We have bumped the pay to $15 an hour, which is competitive as many of the campuses in LISD have no tutors, us being one of them,” Dean of Instruction Jennifer Colman said. “Another thing we’ve looked at is utilizing AVID students or students in advanced classes who need community service hours for their organizations that require them.”

AVID’s goal can be described as helping students to be successful in college, as well as get into college. Tutorials is a system where students ask questions about any subject, and in many cases, other students will help them understand the topic, but when the other students can’t help, a tutor will assist them in understanding. This year and last year, there’s been little to no tutors, which puts a deficit on a large part of the course.

“AVID was really different because we didn’t have any tutors so it was harder to get our work done, but we could focus on college a lot more,” junior Logan McGrath said. “It’s nice to work on college applications and be prepared, as well as understand all of the steps, but not having the opportunity to work on stuff in tutorials really sucks.”

While being a college student or even just a student with a heavy schedule, it’s not always possible to be at campus and help tutor, but tutors are allowed to use Zoom during the tutoring periods to be here virtually. This is especially helpful to a college student who, for instance, goes to college a long distance away from the high school.

“We have done it where people can show up on campus, but we’ve also done it to where people can use Zoom and Zoom in and you are still paid, which is lovely,” Instructional Coach Michelle Lux said. “This can even be during your normal school day as a college student. [For example], let’s say you have a hole in your schedule between 10:00 AM and 12:00 PM; You’d be able to Zoom in and tutor here on campus.”

Having older students in the same class helping is a possibility as well, where a senior with an off period would be able to attend an AVID period with people in grades below them.

“Strictly on a volunteer basis, we’d look for students who are looking for service hours or maybe looking to develop their subject knowledge on certain subjects,” Colman said. “I did talk to some students about that and as it currently is, it didn’t seem to generate much interest to them.”

Tutors are a key component in AVID Tutorials as most students are taking the same classes and likely struggle with the same course material. The program is most likely to go in the direction of current students or returning college students Zooming in to help tutor.

“If there is a way that we can get tutors that go here set up during DEN, I would love it, because when I taught AP US History, and we were studying for the AP exam, we would get students who were really good at the writing component and find times to pair them with students who need help,” Lux said. “Once we find out the students who need it in AVID and the students who are willing and able to do it, it’ll be very successful.”