Please see the attachment to read the press release in its entirety.

Statement from Mr. Brad Scott, CEO PREP Public Schools:

Knoxville, Tenn. – March 28, 2023 – In response to the letter and corresponding attachments received today from the Knoxville Branch NAACP, the leadership team at Chattanooga Preparatory Schools and Knoxville Preparatory Schools is writing to address the inaccuracies in those documents created by the Knoxville Branch NAACP:

  • A charter school is a public school, not a private school, that operates as a school of choice. Knox Prep will be a public charter school that is free to attend for all boys in Knox County, not just those who live within a geographic zone of the school. Charter schools rely on families choosing to enroll their children in the school.
  • Knox Prep’s success is Knox County School’s success. Charter schools are a "tool in the toolbox" for the public school system, offering families additional options for educating their students. Knox Prep hopes to be a partner and an asset to Knox County Schools.
  • Recruitment and enrollment at Chattanooga Prep and Knox Prep- Students are admitted on a first-come, first-serve basis. Submitting a completed application packet - including the required supplemental documentation - within the priority application period secures a student’s place in line. As mandated by the state of Tennessee, Chattanooga Preparatory School, and Knoxville Preparatory School if approved, will enter a lottery if more completed application packets are received than the number of open student seats available for the upcoming year. Students will be assigned a lottery number based on the order preferences outline below, giving preference in the following order:

o Studentscurrentlyenrolledshallbegivenfirstenrollmentpreferenceandareexcluded from the lottery.

o Siblingsofenrolledstudents.
o Studentsofstaffandfaculty,nottoexceed10%oftotalenrollment.
o Students residing in the LEA service area where the public charter school is located

(Knox County Schools), who were previously enrolled in a public or private school in the

service area during the previous year.
o Students residing outside the LEA service area in which the public charter schoolis located and who were attending another public or private school during the previous


Supplemental application documentation- Part of the application includes required

supplemental documentation that includes the most recent report card, attendance report, and discipline report. These reports are used to help Chatt Prep and Knox Prep faculty prepare for the incoming class but have no merit in their admissions process. The information provided on the incoming students is used to make sure the school has everything in place to adequately support the students for success.

  • Parental engagement- Chattanooga Prep and Knox Prep have no parental engagement requirements but parents are asked to sign a commitment that pledges their support of their child’s success in a variety of ways.
  • Uniforms- ALL incoming 6th graders receive a free oxford, polo, and tie upon acceptance to the school. Uniforms are delivered to the homes of the incoming students in a very special visit from staff, faculty, and board members.
  • Why all boys? Boys thrive under personalized instruction specifically designed to meet their needs and teaching styles that reflect boys’ specific learning styles. Young men in urban areas are disproportionately impacted by poverty and educational inequity. Nationwide, boys are consistently underperforming girls academically and socially. This is a reality not only for boys in K-12, but in post-secondary options as well. There is a great need for higher college persistence rates for young men as whole, but especially young men of color.
  • Charter schools have flexibility to cater their offerings to best suit the needs of their specific student population. This includes autonomy to choose the best suited curriculum, discipline policy, length of school day and school year, extracurriculars, summer programming, and enrichment offerings that are typically decided by the district or state. They use innovation to produce positive student outcomes for specific student groups (in this case, boys).

As part of our continued efforts to engage the Knoxville community and create a school that serves boys in Knox County well, upon approval, Knoxville Preparatory School will host a series of town hall meetings to allow prospective parents and students, educators, business leaders, and community members to come and learn about the school and engage with our leadership team. These town halls will allow our team to continue listening to community members to help us tailor our model to best serve Knox County families.

About Prep Public Schools

Prep Public Schools is driven by a mission to engage young men in a rigorous, yet supportive, learning environment that fosters resilience, promotes academic excellence, inspires leadership, and prepares critical thinkers to become the men of tomorrow. Public charter schools under Prep Public Schools offer a unique and impactful educational opportunity for young men in urban communities. Quality STEM- centered curriculum and leadership development ensure students' future success in a fast-paced world.

Prep Public Schools currently operates Chattanooga Preparatory School in Chattanooga, TN, open since 2018, and have submitted a charter school application to the Knox County Board of Education for Knoxville Preparatory School, intended to open in Knoxville, TN in fall 2024, pending approval.

Other stories you may like