Preston Smith co-founded Rocketship Education in 2007, its first school year being housed in a church in San Jose. Smith, the current chief executive officer of Rocketship Education, has taught in low-income, impoverished, troubled areas for the past two decades, having served as its CEO since early 2013. During this time, he’s picked up on several tidbits of pedagogical info that every educator should have access to. Here are a few of them.
Teachers’ backgrounds are matched to that of the schools they teach in. For example, if one of Rocketship Education’s locations in Nashville, Tennessee – aka the Music City – has 50% black, 20% Asian, 10% hispanic, and 20% white students, teachers are selected in these proportions. When classrooms’ teachers’ backgrounds match those of students, they learn more effectively and behave better in class.
Teachers also visit student’s homes each and every year. Seeing as Rocketship heavily values individualized learning, visiting their places of residence helps form these lesson plans more effectively.
Rocketship Education’s administrators aren’t scared to roll back plans that were once expected to perform well, like the school’s former flex model. If these plans don’t work well at all schools, they should be rolled back.
Rocketship Education was created by John Danner and Preston Smith in 2007. Like most other organizations and businesses created in the Bay Area, home to some of the world’s leading entities, Rocketship Education is by no means short on innovation. The group of public charter schools is one of the first in the United States of America to implement technology in its everyday activities, even further, on an individual level. While students spend most of their time at school in traditional classroom settings, those that include each and every student in lectures that focus on classes as a whole, individual students are provided with tablets, desktops, and laptops that feature individualized learning programs to help them hone their respective skill son what matters most. As kids in low-income areas, those that Rocketship Education’s 18 facilities are located in, aren’t often privy to quality educations, this line of schools is helping change the tradition of bad areas getting bad schools.