Five Things the First Ten Years of Rocketship Education Taught its Co-Founder and Contemporary President, Preston Smith

Ten short years ago, Rocketship Education was founded in Redwood City, California, with its first location holding the relatively similar title of Rocketship Mateo Sheedy Elementary School. In July of 2007, the month RSED – short for Rocketship Education – was incorporated in the state of California, Preston Smith was appointed the Founding Principal, in addition to Regional Director. He held these positions for 23 and 31 months, respectively, before working as CAO – Chief Achievement Officer – for 40 months prior to naming himself Chief Executive Officer and President in February of 2013.

Today, RSED houses just short of an impressive 4,000 students across its eighteen locations: twelve spread throughout RSED’s home state of California; three in Nashville, Tennessee; two within the nation’s capital, Washington DC; and the most recent installment in the constantly-wintery community of Milwaukee, Wisconsin. RSED is arguably best-known for its pioneering in tech-heavy personalized education plans, helping it excel in the competitive field of education.

Having endured several hardships throughout his decade-plus of operating his now-successful educational creation, Smith was privy to innumerable lessons. Here are five of those lessons, of which he shared on The 74 Million’s website just a month-and-a-half ago, in August:

Parents are highly recommended to allow their child(ren)’s teacher to visit their home. Considering Rocketship Education is high on personalized learning, looking around one’s place of living helps teachers understand how skilled they are with technology, whether they’re actually struggling regarding material assigned to their individualized plans, and much more.

Further, parents interview incoming candidates. Sometimes such parents are brand new to the school, ranging to spending all six possible years with the institution (K-5).

Teachers are asked to be flexible in changing their presentation of material and homework assigned. As RSED is all about personalized learning, every voice matters exponentially more relative to other schools.

Another important parental involvement includes them being recommended to discontinue enrollment at any school if they’re not teaching their respective children well enough.

Lastly – surely not least important, that’s for sure – parents are encouraged to be proud of RSED’s incorporation as a public school.

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