My name is Jonathan Jean, and I am a senior at Victory Christian Academy. I attended public schools from K-5 until my 6th-grade year when I started attending Victory. The biggest difference I noticed between public school and Victory were the class sizes. At Victory, the class sizes are a lot smaller, allowing teachers to provide more one-on-one help. At my public school, if I were struggling the teacher could not stop teaching to help me. They have to focus on over 20 students at a time and sometimes I was left behind.
At Victory, nobody would get upset if I needed an extra explanation, and the teacher took time to explain the problem to me. This applies to any student who needs extra help, and it matters so much. Having just two minutes where the teacher is able to explain something in a way we understand can directly impact test scores and college possibilities.
I can really feel that the teachers and coaches want me to succeed. If someone gets a bad grade, the coaches will get onto them and make sure they get their grades up so they can play. The teachers will even stay after class to help students catch up. And if we need extra time to work on things due to personal issues, they will allow it. I can feel that the faculty cares about me and that motivates me to work even harder.
Another thing I really appreciate about Victory is the unique environment. People here are like family and they make every effort to make you feel comfortable. There is not a lot of unnecessary drama created by cliques since everybody gets along. I never feel like I have to watch my back. Having that feeling of security and compassion really matters to have the best learning environment.
If it were not for the Step Up for Students scholarship, I would have never been able to attend Victory Christian. My mom is a single mom of four, and I am the oldest. She has always wanted the best for me. So, when I told her that I wanted to go to Victory she immediately started to look for scholarships. She did not want to get my hopes up saying, “We’re going to try to get you to Victory.” But then I got in! The scholarship paid the majority of my tuition costs. I really owe a lot to my parents and Coach Stewart for always looking out for me and my best interests.
The gateways that have been opened up to me because of Victory have been immense. I received a full-ride athletic scholarship to play football at Rice University in Houston, Texas. There, I will major in criminal justice. I think that these gateways should be available to all students. There are a lot of smart kids who live in a bad environment, sometimes their public schools do not work for them. Sometimes they need to step into a new environment so they can experience new things and grow. With the Step Up for Students scholarship, they will most definitely grow.