Investing in Our Children

October 01, 2021

Herrera children at St. Brendan School

Above photo from 2020: Gabriel (8th grade), Alondra (3rd grade)

Living the faith was always important to the Herrera family. Jennifer and Jorge Herrera encouraged all three of their children to serve at St. Brendan Catholic Church from a young age.

Choosing to send their children to Catholic school was a more complicated decision. Marques, the eldest son, completed his education in the public school system. But when the Herreras enrolled their youngest, Alondra, in St. Brendan Catholic School’s pre-K program, they experienced an immediate difference.

“We started seeing that it was very important to us to have our children be able to express their religion and their faith in their daily lives,” said Jennifer. “All the families are so close-knit. I feel like my child is more than just one of many. Everyone in the community works together. It doesn’t matter what grade my child is in—all the teachers know them and all the teachers help them.”

After enrolling Alondra in pre-K, the Herreras realized they wanted the same experience for her older brother, Gabriel, despite the cost of tuition. “One of the biggest things in our minds as parents was whether or not we could afford it,” Jennifer recalled. “But we prayed about it and we got a little more information about the resources available, and we made it happen.”

Both Gabriel and Alondra received Fulcrum Foundation grants from the Tuition Assistance Grant Program (TAP) to attend Catholic school. Now, Gabriel is a student at Archbishop Murphy High School and Alondra is in fifth grade at St. Brendan.

“Enrolling them in Catholic school was a huge thing for our family,” Jennifer said. “Financially, we wouldn’t have been able to afford it without the help of Fulcrum and grants from the school. But we have faith that Catholic school is where our children need to be. Going through the pandemic was such an eye-opener. We were so grateful that our children were in Catholic schools.”

To all parents considering Catholic education for their children, Jennifer advised, “Pray about it. Put it into God’s hands. Don’t be afraid to ask for help—it can be hard, but it’s so important. Investing in our children’s future is the most important thing we can do.”

Fulcrum’s TAP applications open October 1 for the 2022/23 school year. For more information, contact Susan Ocoma, programs director, at susan.ocoma@fulcrumfoundation.org.