Rocketship Education was created by Preston Smith and John Danner in 2007. Preston Smith first went to the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and earned a bachelor’s degree in Latin American Studies. In 2001, he began teaching in San Jose, California and quickly realized that kids growing up there today, compared to his childhood in the area two decades prior, didn’t have the chances they once had to succeed in their academic careers and lives in general.
Today there, are eighteen locations spread across the United States, in California, Wisconsin, Washington DC, and Tennessee. Most are concentrated in the Bay Area, home to boatloads of innovation Rocketship Education is nothing short of.
In 2009, Smith moved from Founding Principal and Regional Director to Chief Achievement Officer. In 2013, the current President also earned the title of CEO. With ten years of experience, he today knows much more about helping Rocketship Education succeed.
As all eighteen facilities belonging to Rocketship Education’s lineup are in disadvantaged neighborhoods, students want teachers that match their culturally-diverse bases of enrollment with teachers sharing backgrounds like students’ environments when growing up. Parents are even brought along on interviews to evaluate potential candidates, as they care about the quality of education their children receive more than most others, even administrators.
Most kids in grades kindergarten through fifth don’t switch classes, as some schools feel it could overwhelm students. Rocketship Education aims to stimulate children at early ages; school days are split into four quarters, three popular subjects, one individualized learning through technological applications. Many schools don’t have the funds to purchase the latest technological devices and software for learning.
Even if schools have top-notch tech, many don’t integrate it successfully daily in classrooms. Rocketship Education has proven itself as a pioneer in using technology to teach students using individualized lesson plans,
Rocketship Education was created to bring top-tier educational experiences to students in disadvantaged areas. Many of its locations routinely score higher on standardized state tests than both private and fellow public schools.