There is a network of charter schools on the rise in our country that has the vision of expanding the availability of quality schools for students in poorer neighborhoods. It is called Rocketship Education. These schools serve grades kindergarten through fifth grade.
Founded in the San Francisco Bay area in 2007, Rocketship has charter schools in four regions of the United States, with plans for more. Parents, teachers and administrators are working toward the dream of eliminating the achievement gap between students who have access to schools in affluent areas and those who live in financially distressed communities.
John Danner and Preston Smith founded Rocketship charter schools in California in 2007. There are more than fifteen schools in that region. In August 2016 the most recent Rocketship was launched in Washington, DC. There are also schools in the network in the Nashville area and in Milwaukee.
The program uses traditional teaching methods as well as adaptive technology to help make every student a successful learner. The facilities are well thought out for maximizing use for student learning. Parents are engaged and involved in helping hire the best and most passionate teachers. These committed parents and outstanding educators are helping low-income children and learners of English find and negotiate the path to a college education.
Parents seem to take their involvement in the schools seriously. They examine teaching candidates and sit in on interviews. Parent input can be enough to sway the offer of a contract to a candidate. Not only do the teachers need solid educational credentials, but they also need to have an attitude that will help them encourage and lead the students to love learning. Charter schools must accept applications from any student in the district, but often hope to make a difference in local low income housing areas. Parents who are involved say that they want their children to have better school outcomes than they have themselves.
Rocketship has a strong vision, the support of communities, high standards and innovative, state of the art buildings. The plan and dream is to have a brighter future for all citizens when it comes to successful education.