Public school systems are a mixed bag in the United States depending on where you happen to live. If you are in an affluent suburban area consisting of families with higher incomes, then chances are that the public schools will reflect this in terms of student accommodations and graduation rates. However, low-income neighborhoods do not have the benefits that come from having money, and the effects are usually devastating for students who fall prey to crime, drugs, and abject poverty. For these students, the best choice parents can make for them is to enroll them early in a charter school like Rocketship Education where their full potential can flourish.
Rocket Education is a non-profit elementary system designed to enrich students by offering an integrated teaching model taking full advantage of both the classroom and technology. The school teaches pre-k to 5th grade and relies on donations, investments, and grants for funding. The teaching model at Rocketship Education is broadly broken down into either STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) or the humanities, but integrates the two wherever possible so students get a well-rounded education that will help them excel as they move on to higher grade levels. The education process is also individualized as much as possible to the student’s particular strengths and learning styles so as to not let them fall behind as is the case so many times in the public school system.
Critics of non-profit charter schools like Rocketship have pointed out a couple avenues of attack that, on their face, seem like valid complaints, but when scrutinized further turn out to be void of substance. The first of these complaints is that charter schools are too rigidly formatted and that this is unhealthy for students. The crux of these arguments seem to rest on the fact that students are spending too many hours on schoolwork, there is too much pressure based on expectations of success, or that there is too much discipline. However, if you look at any successful public school model in the country you will find a similar educational structure, so how it is not beneficial for one as opposed to the other is unclear.
The other main complaint comes from characterizing charter schools as companies more worried about profits than education. However, charter schools like Rocketship Education are explicitly non-profit ventures that don’t really fit the definition of “company” that critics are using. Therefore, this critique seems to rest on a vacillation of the definition of “company” that is either accidental or merely political in nature.