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AAE Charter Schools Blog

Melissa Pratt

Melissa Pratt

Professional Programs Manager

Melissa Pratt is the professional programs manager in AAE’s Washington D.C. office. In this role, Melissa assists with a wide variety of projects, including office management, specialty recruiting programs, and research. Melissa also spearheads professional development initiatives and oversees the AAE Foundation National Teacher Scholarship & Classroom Grant program.

Monday, 21 January 2019 21:32

Schools ‘that fit’ Week


It wouldn’t be hard to look at the 2019 calendar, see that Martin Luther King, Jr. Day falls during National School Choice Week, and incorporate beautifully accurate and still timely quotes to suggest that his message of civil rights included educational rights – specifically school choice rights. I get it. That’s exactly what I set out to do. Many of us truly believe the educational advantages of the wealthy, the privileged, top 10%, whatever you want to call them, should be available to everyone when it comes to parental choice. Many home buyers select homes based on their ‘good’ school districts. Some make the financial decision, even the financial sacrifice, to send children to private schools. What about that magnet school your son or daughter is qualified to attend? Aren’t you going to apply and take advantage of that public school option? And don’t forget the tutors we might seek out to give our children every advantage when it comes to their education. These are decisions many of us weigh.

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Tuesday, 12 June 2018 17:42

Planning for NCSC 2018


 Post by Rena Youngblood, AAE's Director of Charter School Services


This week I have a few important decisions to make before boarding my flight to Austin, Texas, to attend the 2018 National Charter Schools Conference. Things like whether I should squeeze a sweater into the corner of my suitcase just in case the convention hall temperature is set to freezing which happens all too often. More importantly, however, I have to scan over 100 sessions being presented by experts across the country and decide on which ones to attend. All of this in between meeting friends I haven’t seen since last year’s conference, hearing keynote speakers that always motivate me to stay in gear for the next 12 months, and scheduling time with AAE members, charter association staff from partner states, and meeting new colleagues who share the same mission for equitable educational options for all students.

Tuesday, 27 March 2018 19:28

Recap of the 2018 GCSA Conference

It was wonderful meeting many of you at the 2018 Georgia Charter School Association Conference! The annual conference brought together many currently engaged in Georgia’s charter schools and provided opportunities for networking, learning, and engagement between charter school leaders, teachers, board members, advocates, and community stakeholders.

Wednesday, 24 January 2018 19:18

Why AAE Celebrates National School Choice Week


The Association of American Educators (AAE) supports and serves thousands and thousands educators and staff at all types of schools, including public district schools, public charter schools, public magnet schools, private schools, parochial schools, independent schools, and online schools.


A new report may be able to answer that question.  In September, the Thomas B. Fordham Institute, a think tank in Washington, D.C., released a report that looked into chronically absent teachers.  Their finding?  Traditional public school teachers miss more school than charter school teachers.

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