My name is Melanie Osborne, and I have five daughters, four of them are quadruplets.
I remember back when my oldest, now a high school senior, was in the seventh grade, her sisters were in the third grade. I knew my oldest, Allaura, was not getting what she needed in the setting she was in (traditional public school), and I was concerned. I just knew that she needed more. I felt she was underserved, because she likes to be pushed and it just was not happening.
At the same time, some of her sisters were starting to fall behind.
I wanted to send them to North Raleigh Christian Academy, but as a single mom, it was out of my reach. We simply could not afford it. When I spoke to the admissions office at NRCA I said, “How does a mother, who is a single parent with 5 kids, how would I get my kids into your school?” She told me about the Opportunity Scholarship Program, which through state scholarships helps provide tuition assistance to families like mine.
“We applied for the Opportunity Scholarship and we got picked. That was phenomenal, and it has been life changing.”
We applied for the Opportunity Scholarship and we got picked. That was phenomenal, and it has been life changing. I could see a difference in my children within months of being at the school. My oldest daughter was pushed. She got to learn more, had more classes like Latin and Physics. She was in clubs she never thought she’d be in. She got to pursue public speaking, things that I wanted for her and I knew she needed.
This all happened because I was able to get access to the school that I knew could meet her and her sisters’ needs. One of her young sisters has special needs, and we have the Children with Disabilities Grant for her as well. This has not only been live changing, but it has been a life saver.
Ready for the best part?
Allaura is going to college; she’s going to Harvard in the fall on a full-academic scholarship. This has been her dream since she was 5 years old. She has worked for that dream and having school choice for my family through the Opportunity Scholarship has helped make that dream a reality.
I cannot wait to see how the dreams of my other four daughters become reality thanks to the scholarship as well.
“Every parent should be able to do what’s best for their child because as a parent you know what is best for your children.”
For our family being able to choose our choice of school, that met our needs – it has made a world of difference. Every parent should be able to do what’s best for their child because as a parent you know what is best for your children. I ask people across our state to support these scholarships, and I urge our lawmakers to keep this program going for kids that currently have it and to expand it to reach more families across our state.