“I started working when I was 14 years old,” says Juan Guerrero. “I didn’t finish high school, so I work as hard as I can to give my children every opportunity possible. When we heard about the AAA Scholarship Foundation, we knew it would change our children’s lives as well as ours. My wife and I knew it was going to give them the opportunity for a better life.”
Juan and Jelen Guerrero are the parents of four beautiful children – Krystal, Paola, Genesis, and Juan Jr. Juan works incessantly as a construction worker, while Jelen is a stay-at-home mom. The two are adamant about giving each of their children the opportunity to receive a quality education, especially since they were unable to finish high school themselves. “My parents needed help financially, so instead of finishing high school, I went straight to work,” Juan explained. Working in the scorching heat takes a toll on you, but as a father, Juan’s motivation is being able to give his children the chance to chase their dreams, regardless of how impossible they may seem. Unfortunately, as we all know, opportunities usually come with a price tag. While Juan and Jelen would love to send their children to a private school, they simply could not afford it. So, they made the most of the public school their children were zoned to attend.
Juan and Jelen’s children were grateful to be able to attend school in general, but it didn’t necessarily mean they were excelling the way they knew they could. Growing up with Spanish as their primary language, it was hard to adapt to a primarily English-speaking classroom, especially for Krystal. When Krystal was in the 3rd grade, she started to see first-hand how difficult the language barrier made learning. Juan and Jelen could see how this was impacting their daughter’s grades, as well as her overall attitude about school, so they decided to move her to another public school for the fourth grade. Krystal was optimistic that this would be the school she would be victorious at, but to her dismay, it was quite the opposite. When Krystal asked her teacher for help, instead of taking the time to show her step-by-step, they would tell her to “ask her classmates.” This only agitated Krystal. She knew how hard her parents worked to give her and her siblings a more promising life, and she didn’t want them to ever feel as if they had failed her. But asking her classmates for help only confused her, and she didn’t want to worry her parents since they had just transferred schools.
At such a young age, Krystal had the desire to learn and succeed but kept feeling held back. Being the eldest only added to the pressure; she felt responsible to make sure that her siblings were getting the help they needed with their homework. This put Krystal even further behind with her schoolwork. Her siblings looked up to her and mimicked her emotions, so when she was unhappy or not doing well in school, their experiences were the same. Juan and Jelen couldn’t stand to see their children so defeated and overwhelmed, so they decided to take matters into their own hands and search for scholarship opportunities that would allow all their children to attend a school that was ideal for them.
As Juan and Jelen began the search for a better-suited school for their children, they came across what seemed to be the perfect one – Robert F. Munroe Day School. This school had everything they were looking for: enthusiastic teachers, extracurricular activities, and above all, a love for learning. Another added benefit was that the faculty was extremely helpful with pointing families in the right direction to find and apply for scholarship programs. They never want a family’s financial situation to be the deciding factor in their choice for education. When the two were informed about the AAA Scholarship Foundation, Juan and Jelen immediately felt as if their luck was about change, and a few months later, when they received their packet from AAA congratulating them on qualifying for a scholarship, they knew it had.
Now with their children attending Robert F. Munroe Day School full time, it has been a true blessing for Juan and Jelen to see them longing to wake up in the morning and go to school. Juan can’t express enough how much this scholarship has helped his children academically. Prior to attending their parent-selected school, his children were doing their best just to get by. Now, they’re hungry to learn and not afraid to take on a challenge. “They have the opportunity to really be something at this school,” says Juan. “I can’t thank AAA enough for making this possible.”
“On my first day at my new school, I felt so welcomed because everyone was so friendly,” says Krystal. “In every class when I ask for help, my teachers explain it step-by-step until I get the hang of it, and they always go out of their way to ask if I need any help.” Not only is Krystal happy that she is receiving the attention that she needs in the classroom, but her younger siblings are entering an environment that will encourage them to learn and ask questions. “I am so happy that my baby brother will have a great education at a young age, and that my sisters will also get the extra help they need.” Krystal and her siblings have improved in numerous ways – they are no longer timid to ask questions in class and they encourage each other every day to be the best possible versions of themselves. All four of the Guerrero children are involved in extracurricular activities, such as volleyball, baseball, and theatre. Krystal is confident that this school is the stepping stone to her very bright future. She has high aspirations of attending the University of Florida and studying medicine in hopes of becoming a doctor one day. “With the help from the AAA Scholarship Foundation, I am positively sure I will reach my goals.”
“I just want to say that I am so grateful that my family has been chosen to get into a better school,” says Krystal. “This opportunity has impacted our lives now and forever. I will never forget what AAA and the people donating money have done for me and my family. I can never thank you enough and just know you’re changing lives.”
About AAA Scholarship Foundation
The AAA Scholarship Foundation awards scholarships solely to qualifying low-income, disabled and/or displaced students. The typical AAA Scholarship student is an ethnic minority living with a struggling single parent/caregiver in a high crime community. More than 90.6 percent of AAA scholarships are distributed to children at or below 200 percent of poverty. Many children are either below grade level, failing at their previous school or both when they receive a scholarship. Parents, who find their children in these circumstances and are concerned about their future, look for viable options. They seek an atmosphere that challenges their child and will reverse inadequate learning, social patterns and the potential lifelong negative impact. They wish to change their child’s learning environment, acquaintances and the unfortunate predictable outcomes associated with school failure.
AAA Scholarships are funded in Arizona, Florida, Georgia and Nevada by corporations that redirect a portion of their state tax liability to the AAA Scholarship Foundation in exchange for a dollar-for-dollar tax credit. The AAA Scholarship Foundation is one of the only approved 501(c)(3) nonprofit scholarship organizations exclusively serving qualifying low-income, disabled and/or displaced students through these tax credit scholarship programs in multiple states. AAA Scholarship Foundation provides your company with the convenience and efficiency of a single-solution for participating in multiple state tax credit scholarship programs. For more information, or to learn how your corporation can participate in the program, visit www.AAAScholarships.org, or contact Kerri Vaughan at firstname.lastname@example.org or 888 707-2465 ext. 730.
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