Rocketship Education is a charter school network that is based in Redwood City, California. It is run on a non-profit basis and has schools in Redwood City, Concord, and San Jose in California. It also has schools on the east coast including in Washington D.C., Milwaukee, and Nashville.
At Rocketship Education they take a different approach to learning than conventional schools do. The most important one is recognizing that every student is unique. They learn in different ways and some need more help than others do understanding material. Due to this at Rocketship Education they make use of a mix of traditional instruction combined with tutoring opportunities and technology.
Another way that Rocketship Education is different is that parents play a much bigger role in the operations of the school and their children’s education. Parents are shown how to advocate for their child which is a skill they will have in their tool belt after their child moves on to middle and high school. Another way they’re different is that they invest heavily in their teachers and their advanced training.
Rocketship Education was established by John Danner and Preston Smith who were entrepreneurs in the field of education. They wanted to address the needs of low-income communities, especially those who primarily only spoke Spanish. One of the founders, John Danner, had been a software engineer so he thought up ways that technology could be used to effectively teach children and treat each of them individually. At the time Preston Smith had been a principal at one of the better schools located in San Jose. He had noted that parent involvement made a huge difference in educational outcomes and also noted how empowered teachers were better at their craft.
So far there are 12 Rocketship Education schools across the United States. They are planning on opening more over the upcoming years. They teach more than 8,000 students in the United States. Their schools educate children PreK-5. More than 85% of the children come from low-income households and despite this the schools have high achievement scores. Each year 90% of the students return to the school after the summer break.