At Rocketship Education they say that when it comes to schools it becomes very personal. Nobody wants their child attending a school where the unofficial motto is “good enough”. The leaders of a school and teachers have a huge responsibility to students to educate them to the best of their ability. There are moving parts to a school that people in the field of education don’t always agree with one another on so they have different approaches. This includes classroom management, the use of technology, and intervention.
Managing a classroom is a balancing act. Teachers need to set clear rules in their classroom and there are also school-wide policies that need to be followed. Each classroom needs to have good rules in place are else chaos can quickly ensue. At Rocketship Education they follow the best practices that are used in other charter school systems across the United States. The classrooms are highly structured but, at the same time, they don’t want to be overly militant as that is going overboard. Where to draw the line is always pretty difficult and even the former US Secretary of Education said they struggled with this issue.
How much technology is used in the classroom can also be a challenge. At Rocketship Education each student uses up to 80 minutes a day doing different programs on their computers including ST Math and Lexia. They follow a “lab rotational model” where some students work in the computer lab and other students use this time for an intervention.
Intervention is also something that schools need to balance in order for it to be effective. Students receive support for subjects they find challenging while others are coached to address problems they are having. There are questions surrounding how many non-certified staff members should be involved in intervention versus how many teachers should be engaged with this as well. It all depends on what role someone assigns to teachers.
Rocketship Education is based in Redwood City, California. They were founded in 2006 and they mainly teach children from low-income homes. They operate charter schools in three states plus the nation’s capital.