An AVID speech

Chiefess Kamakahelei Middle School teacher Giancarlo Graneto spoke last week at the Honolulu Convention Center to more than 900 educators at the annual AVID Summer Institute. He was one of only 11 teachers nationwide selected to have the opportunity to speak, and the first teacher from Kauai to speak at an AVID Institute.

Giancarlo is in his 13th year teaching at Chiefess Kamakahelei Middle School. He shared the story of what made him become an AVID teacher, what he likes about the program, and how it helped him make a bigger difference in his students’ lives.

“I was moved to become an AVID teacher after I saw students share their stories of accomplishment with tears in their eyes at my first AVID Institute,” he said. “I wanted to be part of a program in which kids proudly stand on stage and say, ‘Because of AVID, I am the first person in my family to graduate from high school.’ Or, ‘Because of AVID, I am the first person in my family to attend college.’”

AVID works to close the achievement gap by providing educators with strategies that ensure students have the opportunity to succeed.

Summer Institutes are AVID’s annual professional learning events where educators from across the nation are trained in AVID strategies.

During Summer Institute, student and educator speakers share their stories to show how AVID has changed their lives and their careers for the better.

“AVID has helped me increase student learning by enhancing my ability to create and foster a team atmosphere in the classroom,” Giancarlo said. “AVID transformed my class into a partnership between my students and I. This year we became an AVID family.”

Dr. Sandy Husk, CEO of AVID, notes the significance of being selected as an AVID Summer Institute speaker.

“Hearing the stories of our speakers is always the most moving and motivating part of the training,” Husk said. “These speakers are chosen from nearly 1,000 speech entries, and the educators and students selected represent the very best examples of the how AVID impacts lives every day.”

Bill Arakaki, Kauai Complex superintendent, said it was an honor to have Graneto selected to speak at the 2016 AVID Hawaii Summer Institute.

“We are very proud of his commitment and dedication to the students and families on Kauai,” Arakaki said. “He has a great story to tell about his experiences in supporting students to be college and career ready, which has benefited our students tremendously.”

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