The first Rocketship school was established ten years ago in a San Jose church. They are continuously learning the best ways to serve their communities and students. Rocketship is a non-profit, national network of charter schools for public and elementary education. They provide excellent schools for low income communities. The most important lessons Rocketship has learned to date are described below.
Personalized learning is about tech, understanding the interests and needs of the families and students and making yearly home visits to the families. The relationship between the family and Rocketship is critical to educating the students.
The focus of Rocketship is elementary education. The K-12 system creates the demand for quality public education. John King stated systems focused on equity are not happening fast enough. More energy must be devoted to creating the necessary demand.
The parent leadership program holds the leaders accountable, demands political attention, and enables the public schools of the highest quality to thrive. Offering nothing but elementary education means the parents must advocate, organize and engage in middle and high schools of high quality. Parents must be in the driver’s seat regarding public education.
All kids are welcome at Rocketship regardless of creed, class, race or ethnicity. Diversity is valued and kids should not need to leave their community to have access to a great school. The diversity of the teachers is just as important as the diversity of the students.
Every school should be good enough for all students to attend. There must be equality in education for every child.
Students with disabilities must be included in a meaningful way. This is a great help to these students. The also enables the other students to develop and discover their own remarkable potential.
The flex model creates a open and dynamic learning environment. This taught Rocketship the value of real time coaching, the student agency, weekly goal setting, continuous learning and actionable feedback.
The mindset of the educators must match the mindset of the school. The teachers must strive to master their skills and embrace feedback. This improves the outcome of the school and strengthens the adult culture.