What’s Right With Our Schools: Chatt Prep 300

CHATTANOOGA. TN (WDEF) – Chatt Prep revived a powerful back to school tradition earlier this month. At the Chattanooga 300, men from throughout the community greeted the students as they walked into their new collegiate gymnasium.

Montrell Besley is the Director of Community Engagement for Chattanooga Preparatory Schools.

He says, “Today is just to show, to give our young man some encouragement about going into the first day of school. Our boys are going to school a whole week earlier than Hamilton County. So we figured out a way over the last few years to give them encouragement and show them the community supports them.”

Belsey continues, “It shows that we can build this community together. Just like Mayor Kelly said you know one Chattanooga. That is what Chatt. prep is, it’s one Chattanooga. We are the living example of what one Chattanooga looks like. So it is a blessing just to have all of our people from different walks of life, different economic backgrounds just coming together. As the saying you know Chatt Prep and being in support of our kids in our community.”


LaDarrius Price supports the school.

He says, “It’s so important that they understand that they have support no matter what demographic they come from. We are part of their village whether they realize or know us personally or not. We’re just here to support them, to love on them, to rub on them just let them know that we are here. We have a presence in our community and we are going to support them all the way through and see them all the way through and everything that they are doing.”


Besley adds, “Because of Covid, our seventh grade class that you seeing walk through this time, this is the first year. So we did a virtual 300 which is not as on site and physical as being here at the 300 this year. So it just looks totally different so they were kind of surprise. They haven’t really seen what the 300 looks like. So the only ones who have actually seen it or the ninth grade and eighth grade. So it’s like a big surprise for the seventh and sixth graders this year.”


Noah Taylor is an 8th grader at Chatt Prep.

He says, “It’s actually, it’s actually, well to be honest it’s kind of fun. And, and it helps me throughout the year.”


Parent LaTonya Rucker adds, “To me it motivates them and relaxes them. You know a lot of them the first day are nervous and afraid. So I am here to relax them and they could just laugh at me. Ha ha.”


Besley concludes, “This is an amazing feeling. It’s like, it’s like magical. We like to we like to tell people that Chatt Prep is a Disney world of schools and that is exactly who we are, it’s just a magical feeling. It’s an amazing feeling just to see community members who can actually come together and get to have a conversation just like to see people doing now just having conversations enjoying the day.”



Categories: Chattanooga, Education, Local News, What’s Right With Our Schools