Rocketship Education Is Reshaping Charter Schools

Today’s school systems are plagued with inequalities and obstacles for low-income families and communities. Factors such as income and residential location often dictate what school our students will attend. In low-income communities, schools and educational programs often lack the funding and support needed to ensure each students success. The restrictions placed on communities by the school system creates significant achievement gaps for students of those communities. Rocketship Education is a network of public charter schools on a mission to close those gaps and open more doors for students of low-income families.

Rocketship Education focuses on each students wellbeing, entirely. Understanding the impact that outside factors have a childs schoolwork, the network is committed to supporting their students and families. Such was the case when many of the students from Rocketship Education San Jose, California school lost their homes in a flood. The school and its volunteers immediately kicked into action, providing the families with hot food, clean clothes, and a ton of support and encouragement during their time of need.

The school also formed a volunteer organization, the Rocketeers, who raised over $60,000 by networking with Catholic Charities. With their help, 30 families were provided the support they needed as they worked through the tragedy.

Rocketship Education was founded by Preston Smith and John Danner as an alternative learning option for low-income students. On a mission to bridge the gap between quality education and underprivileged communities, the duo opened the first school in San Jose, California in 2007. After receiving praise for exceptional test scores on Californias state assessment, the network quickly expanded, opening six more locations by 2013. Rocketship also prides themselves on being a network of community schools. To stay true to their values, the network heavily encourages parent involvement and healthy parent-teacher relationships. Going the extra mile, teachers, and leaders of Rocketship visit the home of each student during the fall, to gain a better understanding of their family life, and help create the best learning environment for today’s early learner.