As a non-profit school, our continuous goal is to offer a comprehensive and affordable education in the Czech language, history, geography and culture. And so as we move forward in our mission and as we try to expand our programs, our promise is to keep standards hight and prices low, so we can serve our whole community.
We also understand, that not always can parents support all the extra curriculum activities. So our longtime partner Sokol of San Francisco offers scholarships opportunities to all students of Czech School of California, which we are so grateful for.
Sokol of San Francisco’s mission is to provide physical, educational, and cultural programs for all those who are interested in Czech, Moravian and Slovak culture and their history, as well as those who are bonded by common heritage and ethnic identity.
If you are a member of American Sokol or decide to become a member you can apply for the American Sokol Scholarship (connected to Czech School of California). A total of three scholarships of $500 each will be awarded per year.
But this story is about our student Tyra and her mother Kamila Burns, who was awarded with the American Sokol Scholarship. Here are parts of the lovely essay letter, that got Tyra the scholarship:
I, Tyra’s mother, am a native Czech citizen, born and raised in the Czech Republic. Ever since Tyra was born, I have spoken to her exclusively in Czech, rarely using English when addressing her.
My side of the family is entirely Czech, living in the Czech Republic, where we take multi-week vacations in summer. I feel that it is important for the Tyra’s growth, development and identity as 50% Czech to maintain these extended visits. If Tyra is to integrate fully and benefit from her Czech visits, learning the language will be a key factor.
My recent divorce has posed many challenges to my children’s comprehension and advancement in learning Czech. Since the children spend the entire school week with their American father, they have no exposure to Czech during this time. Over the last few months I have noticed that Tyra’s memory retention is suffering from this lack of exposure to the language. Tyra even told me that she did not understand some of the things I was saying, which I have never heard from her before.
My financial situation is very limited at this time. And when it comes to the Czech school, children’s father does not share my sentiment that the language and culture is a vital part of the children’s development and identity. As a result, he refuses to help me in any way with the children’s tuition fees.
I really look forward to be a part of the San Francisco Sokol organization. Collaboration between Czech School of California and Sokol is important because both surely bring many Czech people together in our community, making them feel like they are home.
It is my desire that this essay sufficiently describes the needs of my children, my dedication to their development and identity, our financial needs, and my enthusiasm to become an active Sokol member to contribute to the growth of our Czech community in the Bay Area.
Are you going to be the next one? More information about scholarships can be found here.