A comment from a reader:
It is alarming that Rocketship can be allowed to grow as it is – they just received city approval for a contested area of public land in San Jose for another campus while they already have 7 running. Rocketship’s strag
Rocketship says parents have a quota for volunteer hours – 30 per year to be exact. The most recent “volunteer” opportunity afforded to me was that I would get 5 hours for EVERY adult I brought with me to this event – that’s why there is always a sea of purple where ever Rocketship tries to “make a stand” at the expense of the public. If public school teachers all had this kind of parent engagement in the children’s actual learning and not the school’s political demonstrations, the children would be much better served. I believe the elected/appointed officials that are placed on the city council and board of education in San Jose are simply being politicians – say or do anything that will get them “cheers.”
Scheduled visits the media make mean nothing. Be a teacher or a student or a parent. I had my son at two of the campuses before I finally pulled him out midyear and placed him in a regular public school. No attention is being made to the numbers of teachers or families who defect from the school. They claim they need 20 more campuses when their current seven aren’t even full! Further they pander to parents as often as they can to “recruit” because they don’t have enough applicants. Their biggest “group” of applicants are kindergartners whom I’m sure are picked up from visiting Head Start Centers throughout Santa Clara County.
The “model” needs to be scrutinized. Rocketship has no model – in the few years they have been in operation they have constantly changed things up because they really aren’t producing the results they expect, they call it “innovation” all while parents have no input or informed of these “changes” until the day before the “changes” go into affect.
With a stripped-down teach-for-the-test curriculum that requires longer days for students and insame amounts of uselss, busy “homework,” you can’t expect to encourage the students to be innovative when art and music fall to the wayside as well as allowing time for constructive chores or freetime during weekends or vacations. My son was one of the top-performing kids in his grade level, and was most diligent with completing the really unnecessary amounts of homework and even he had trouble finishing many times – at 3rd grade! I haven’t been able to have him fold his own clothes or help with dinner preparation which I believe are just as important in character development as any “words” written on cheap paper posted on any of the Rocketship walls.
Even 15 minutes of “tangible Lego time” would help the kids get some enjoyment and encourage creativity. STEM subjects are the pieces that will be needed in most jobs today and in the future. STEAM (A for Art) is the more accurate idea – as art is necessary for innovation and what will prepare children today for in-demand jobs today and in the next decade. We don’t even have to say college. College is absolutely necessary.
Irony: the same companies and executives who support Rocketship operate/live in the affluent counties that have rejected Rocketship from entering their own neighborhoods. If Rocketship’s ideas are really valuable, you would think they would send their own children to those campuses.
Rocketship is just a business reaping public funds at the expense of property tax payers, at the same eradicating public education, and preying on the most vulnerable – the young children of the non-English speaking poor and being detrimental for their futures.
This is a joke.