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Rocketship Education Tackling the Achievement Gap

With the current achievement gap in the education sector in the US, it will take years to standardize quality education. Currently, there are about 14,000,000 students in the country served by about 14,000 schools that differ in quality. About 33% of students from minority communities fail to graduate high school.

Rocketship Education commits to creating transformational schools that can bridge the gap. As such, they use the one student unique needs model to advance education at a personalized level. Rocketship schools employ a rotational model that has five approaches; whole group learning, targeted learning, team learning, small group instruction, and online learning.

In the whole group learning mechanism students are taught together with their peers either in the classroom or community circles. Rocketship has leverage online learning to enable students to learn at their own pace. Thanks to adaptive online learning program, students who struggle with catching up can now use it for extra practice. The other advantage of online learning is it equips students with skills such as research, writing and multimedia presentations. With the target intervention learning, teachers can make time for students that need extra help. Rocketship education gathers data on all its students that allow monitoring of progress. As for team learning, the teacher provides the basis for student interaction and collaboration to share knowledge and cultivate social skills through group projects.

The teachers at Rocketship pursue excellence and are vested in creating future leaders. Under Rocketship’s rotational model, two teachers rotate in a classroom each day. The teachers are hired based on merit and skill and exposed to training while at Rocketship. Parents are allowed to engage as much as possible. Rocketship understands that the parents are more likely to change their community. The parents actively participate in the hiring process of teachers. Also, they are required to attend specific events within the school yearly. The school also organizes home visits to the student’s’ home to build a rapport between the guardians and the teachers. Rocketship uses parent engagement as a means of advocating for quality in education. Once the Rocketeers graduate from fifth grade, the parents are expected to demand quality at the next school.

The Rocketship Education model is innovative and different. Other schools can follow in their footsteps as the country moves towards achieving quality and equality.

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