The totality of a student’s success is of the highest importance. An often overlooked but major part of that success is the parent experience. It is that experience that the built-in community where members support one another is found.
Ensuring family stability allows for a more fulfilling academic experience. No one knows that more than Dulce, the mother of Cesar, a Rocketship Education student in San Jose, California. She was recently interviewed about her effort to recover from massive floods that significantly impacted her area. “I never thought it would be Cesar’s school who would be there supporting us in our darkest moments,” Dulce said. “Without the help of Rocketship Education, we wouldn’t have any of this.”
Chaotic situations, natural disasters, and an uncertain future can all work to unsettle a student. Any parent will agree that the deeply ingrained spirit of togetherness during times of trial or tribulation can make things astronomically better.
Elements of the academic and educational experience can be incredibly difficult for parents to endure on their own. In many schools across America, children are sent to school to learn and parents have very little interaction with teachers or instructors. Perhaps there is a quarterly parent teacher conference or a yearly open house, but schools like Rocketship Education are trying to change that.
In the case of Dulce, Rocketship Education donors laid the foundation for a feeling of security so that Cesar could continue to learn uninterrupted. The community surrounding Dulce and her family, rooted in the academic experience and association with Rocketship, led her to feeling secure and stable. It goes without saying that if this supportive infrastructure had not been in place, Cesar may have felt anxious and his academic performance may have deteriorated.
Dulce’s appreciation shines through in her interview. “I want to thank the Rocketship donors for helping us when we lost everything,” she said. “For giving us nights where we could rest, knowing our children were safe and sound. Above all, thank you for the spirit behind your generosity.”
While home may an important place for a child, the place where they are educated is where they spend most of their waking hours. Their experience at school will play an integral role in their future. It will determine their social prowess, academic ability, and future prospects. If parents are unable to depend on a solid and structured educational experience, they and their children are placed at a significant disadvantage.
At Rocketship Education, the parent-teacher relationship is not only a priority. It’s a sacred bond between a mom or dad or both and the person they depend on to teach their child and keep her or him safe. This unique and mutually fulfilling partnership helps each party to become more aware and contribute to insight that allows for the development of the child to her or his utmost potential.
Rocketship Education teachers and instructors take their approach to teaching and forming bonds with parents and students very seriously. These professionals and parents exchange important information and data about how the child experiences a classroom setting. If a child is struggling socially or academically, Rocketship Education staff inform parents and work toward a solution. The experience is tailored to the student, and parents and teachers unite to ensure the best possible outcome.
Whether it is keeping parents aware of a syllabus or a project, Rocketship Education works to integrate the educational experience into the child’s home. This way, the work educating the child never really ends — it seamlessly continues from the classroom to the living room. Parents then have the opportunity to interact with the parents of other Rocketeers to exchange ideas and strategies to obtain the best possible results for their children.
It goes without saying that the best approach is for teachers and parents to speak to one another in person, but creating an email routine is quickly becoming a preferred method of communication. This method between Rocketship Education staff and parents only strengthens the tight-knit community that is so crucial to its educational mission. The spirit of constructive criticism is conducive to helping the child achieve success in and out of the classroom.
Another Rocketship Education example of staff prioritizing the parent experience is when Founding Principle James Robinson published an op-ed in The Tennessean to make parents aware of the importance of understanding growth scores to more fully comprehend the progress of their children: “To all Nashville public school parents. I urge you to ask about your child’s growth scores on MAP, no matter where they fall in terms of proficiency,” wrote Robinson. “Paying attention to where your child is headed, and not just where he’s at right now, will help you be a stronger advocate for his learning and long-term success.”
The cooperation between parents and those that teach their children is quintessential to a positive and successful academic experience. If a child is struggling at home, school can be a place where they have refuge and a milieu of positivity — and vice versa.
Rocketship Education is working to bridge the gap between education and stability that Cesar and far too many other children have to endure.