Letters to the editor: March 5, 2008

Cheers for effort at FWHS

Thank you for your recent article by Margo Horner highlighting the AVID program at Federal Way High School and their recent designation as an AVID National Demonstration School (Feb. 29).

It is an honor and an accomplishment shared by the Federal Way High School administrative team, teachers, students, parents and the AmeriCorps academic coaches.

There are many things that make the Advancement Via Individual Determination program at Federal Way High School a success. But the key factors are great teachers, outstanding leadership and the community that has been developed that shares a common vision of academic excellence and what students can accomplish.

AVID at Federal Way High School is about the relationship the students develop with their teachers over the years, and the relationships the students develop with one another.

It is about their dedication, hard work and high expectations for one another.

The AVID program at Federal Way High School is one of excellence due to the leadership and passion of principal Lisa Griebel, assistant principal Jerry Warren and Karin Weberg, the AVID coordinator.

Mr. Warren helped bring AVID to the district and has been involved in leading and supporting AVID since it began. Monda Holsinger, the AmeriCorps coordinator, has been a strong supporter of the program for five years and works very hard to ensure the quality and excellence of the AmeriCorps academic coaches that are a critical part of the program in Federal Way Public Schools.

It is also important to recognize the support of the AVID program by the Federal Way School Board and Superintendent Tom Murphy. AVID has expanded to all secondary schools over five years. That requires vision, planning and stable funding to build the program in Federal Way to the level and quality we have.

AVID is a program that has had great success in preparing students for college for 27 years. Few AVID schools achieve National Demonstration School status. Federal Way High School is the first high school in the state of Washington to achieve the National AVID Demonstration School designation. Congratulations to the administrative team, staff, students, AmeriCorps Academic Coaches and parents at Federal Way High School.

Christine Baker, AVID district director, Kent

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