It is difficult to adequately define the tremendous difference School Choice has made for students and families at Meredith-Dunn. Simply stated, children who would never have had the opportunity to have their learning differences effectively addressed have been given an opportunity to learn to read, to do math, to write a story, etc. But perhaps most importantly, School Choice has empowered struggling students to understand that they can be competent and can succeed. Many parents understand what their children need but do not have the resources to provide it. School Choice has been a lifeline to them. In essence, School Choice provides opportunity for individuals- children and parents who just want a chance.
At Saint Nicholas Academy, we have families who have English as a second language and currently an immigrant family working toward citizenship. School Choice Scholarship grants mean everything to them. They want their children in a safe environment where the administration is dedicated to helping them navigate through the intricacies of forms, bureaucracy and cultural differences that are vague to them. This year the children of our immigrant family from Tanzania became citizens. The parents did not and I asked why. The answer was that it was most important for them and it is expensive. So the parents planned to take the oath at another date after they save up the money. Both parents work different shifts at a fulfillment center. The oldest daughter babysits her three younger siblings. These children speak their native language, French and English. However, reading and understanding English is different. This is true of our Vietnamese families, most of whose children are second generation immigrants. In many cases these children enter Saint Nicholas with little or no English language abilities. Other ethnic groups represented are: Chinese, Bosnian, Puerto Rican, Pilipino, and Guatemalan. The School Choice administration works closely with our families in helping them navigate through the application process.There is no other proven successful method in raising the standard of a family or changing their future’s outcome, than by educating the children. Thank you for all that you do to make a difference in the lives of our families.