Rocketship Education, a group of charter schools in the Bay Area, Milwaukee, Nashville, and Washington D.C, are continuing to push forth unique solutions to the problems that plague many inner-city communities. Rocketship Education’s goal is to offer quality, economically sustainable education to underprivileged areas. But their mission extends far beyond that. Rocketship wants to create an educationally ecosystem where what the students learn in school “seeps into” their home life. Essentially, Rocketship wants a holistic learning experience, where students not only are taught subject area matter, but also practical life skills that allow them to navigate any aspect of the post-secondary life. Rocketship currently serves 15,000 students, with 85% of them being low-income. To accomplish their goals, Rocketship Education focuses on personalized learning, talent development, and “parent power.” The first two are perfectly in-line with Rocketship’s intention of bringing out the best of every student, even if their talents have yet to surface in a school setting. The last area might be the most important, however, as it establishes Rocketship Education’s absolute intention of involving the entire community with the education process. Unlike other schools, which sometimes try to keep parents out of the process, Rocketship actively involves parents, sometimes even bringing them in for things like teacher interviews. All in all, Rocketship is dedicated to doing something truly unique in education, and their latest emphasis with the start of the new year is a continuation of this philosophy.
With the start of 2018, Rocketship Schools are making sure to give lagging students a chance to catch up to the rest. As the new year starts, students are given opportunities to finish assignments they never managed to, relearn key concepts important for future learning, and simply re-engage with the flow of the classroom. By helping students back into the “groove of things,” Rocketship hopes to increase student engagement. Students tend to be defeatists when they fall behind, but with every chance in the world to seize their education again, they are more likely to apply themselves fully. To accomplish this, Rocketship School’s teachers make an effort to teach skills like time and task management. This is the type of learning that transcends the classroom, and students who slowly get a better grasp of managing what they need to get done in the classroom are likely to see the same benefit in their home life. Hopefully, Rocketship’s attempts to emphasize a new start this year will pay off, and the schools will have another great innovation to help their nobel mission of improving local schools.