The work of Rocketship Education and its fellow charter schools has always caused concern for many quarters of the public and media. An NPR article looking at the inner workings of Rocketship Education has recently become the source of much annoyance for members of the school community and the wider charter school sector. Rocketship Education was established in 2006 after two former public school educators decided the system in and around San Jose, California was failing many children. The success of the Rocketship school system has seen more than 13 institutions open over the last decade and a range of success stories added to the school’s story.
One of the major issues with the work of Rocketship Education has been a lack of understanding about what the group is seeking to do within the community. The piece published by NPR has been attacked by commentators and journalists for a lack of understanding about what the aims and goals of Rocketship Education are. The writer of the NPR article stated her belief in a balanced piece of writing because she interviewed both an unhappy parent and a happy one. Respected education journalist and charter schools supporter, Richard Whitmire believes any discussion about the relative success or failure of a school should include a comparison with local neighborhood schools.
Rocketship Education is undoubtedly a popular charter school system for U.S. families who are seeking new ways of educating their children in a successful way. The article did not address the reasons why the charter school system is so popular or successful, instead, the writer decided to focus solely on the negative aspects of anecdotes told by a single unhappy parent. In fact, the majority of questions raised concerns affecting each and every school in the U.S. based around classroom management issues. Rocketship Education CEO Preston Smith believes the work being completed at the charter school is evolving and addressing the same concerns facing public schools in an evolving way.