GCSA is celebrating its 10th anniversary at the Georgia World Congress Center this Thursday and Friday and will feature more than 40 exhibitors and charter schools leaders, teachers and parents from around the state.
Both Sen. Chip Rogers (R-Woodstock) and Kelly Marlow, who was elected in July as the school board representative for the newly redrawn Post 1 will be given awards for their dedication to charter schools.
Rogers will receive the Charter Impact Award while Marlow will be awarded the Power to the Parents Award, as she is a parent of two children at Cherokee Charter Academy in Canton.
Marlow said the award recognizes a charter school parent who has gone above and beyond all others to support, defend, and help proliferate quality charter school choices in the state of Georgia.
“I am a proud supporter of public school options and it is my sincere honor to receive this award on behalf of all hard-working volunteer parents and guardians across Georgia who spend countless hours working to help make our public schools the educational well-being centers of our communities,“ Marlow said.
Rogers said he is honored that an organization committed to empowering students and parents through educational choice has recognized his efforts.
“I look forward to continuing these efforts so that Georgia is recognized as the national leader in educational freedom,” Rogers said.
The awards ceremony will take place Thursday from noon to 1:30 p.m.
In addition to the handful of other awards, the Coca-Cola Foundation will also award $50,000 to the Charter School of the Year, which will be announced at the ceremony.
The conference is scheduled just 30 days before Georgians cast their vote on a constitutional amendment that would create a state commission charged with considering appeals by public charter schools that have previously been denied by their respective local school boards.
In a release by GCSA, the group’s CEO Tony Roberts said Georgia parents, especially those who can’t afford to move to ‘better’ school districts, “(demand) the right” to have more public school options.
“The educational status-quo has obstructed the growth of quality charter schools in our state, which is why this amendment is so important,” Roberts said. “Our conference will be focused on strategies to educate the broader community about the innovations and achievement of public charter schools and their power to change children’s lives.”
All 314 public charter schools in Georgia are tuition-free and operate with more freedom from state and local regulation than traditional public schools, according to the release.