Rocketship Public Schools Reviews | Glassdoor

Rocketship Public Schools Reviews

Updated August 10, 2018
97 reviews

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3.0
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Preston Smith
47 Ratings

97 Employee Reviews

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Pros
  • "Brilliant, hard-working and driven peers" (in 14 reviews)

  • "great mission and strong commitment to students and families" (in 5 reviews)

Cons
  • "Absolutely no work-life balance; doesn't seem to be a priority" (in 17 reviews)

  • "Long hours with essentially no work life balance" (in 15 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. Featured Review

    "Great Place to Work!"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Rocketship Public Schools full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    - Brilliant, hard-working and driven peers!
    - Managment is dedicated to helping you in your short-term and long-term personal goals.
    - Pay! Pay is much stronger than competitors in my area.
    - Instruction is guided, but has become SO flexible! Teachers have autonomy to bring the JOY into their classrooms.

    Cons

    - Long hours (but the pay and impact makes it worth it)

    Advice to Management

    Keep on developing and investing in strong managers! Seems like most negative reviews are due to manager-managees relationships.


  2. "Tutor"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at Rocketship Public Schools part-time

    Pros

    Help children get to potential

    Cons

    Lots of time put in

  3. "Hard work"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Rocketship Public Schools full-time

    Pros

    Good pay, dedicated teams, amazing families

    Cons

    Long hours, continuous shifting of expectations and objectives, little to no work life balance, under qualified upper management

    Advice to Management

    Hire people who actually care about students and teachers. Not one or the other.


  4. "n/a"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at Rocketship Public Schools full-time

    Pros

    Inclusion focused program special education program.

    Cons

    No work time for teachers and long school hours.


  5. "Teachers"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Rocketship Public Schools full-time

    Pros

    Curriculum Support
    Pay for Performance

    Cons

    Long Hours
    Relationships across the network


  6. Helpful (1)

    "Great Mission, No Balance"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Rocketship Public Schools full-time

    Pros

    Meaningful work, mission-driven, smart and collaborative teammates.

    Cons

    Absolutely no work-life balance; doesn't seem to be a priority.

    Rocketship Public Schools Response

    Jun 4, 2018 – Senior Director of Talent

    Thank you for your feedback and your service to our Rocketeers. We hear you, and we've made big changes to our lesson planning process for the 18-19 school year, among other improvements, to help... More


  7. Helpful (2)

    "Great Philosophy, but Execution is Too Perfect"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Teacher in San Jose, CA
    Former Employee - Teacher in San Jose, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at Rocketship Public Schools full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Every aspect of the schools is so well-designed and so well-thought out. The professional development was a lot more helpful than when I worked at district schools. At least at Mateo Sheedy, the environment of the staff attitudes was very positive.

    Cons

    *Treats teaching like a science more than an art, which isn't how teaching always works.
    *There is more work than is able to be done in a reasonable amount of time during the day. I would estimate on average, teachers have to work 60-70 hours per week in order to do everything asked of them.
    *8-9 hour school days with only a 20 minute recess each day along with a 40 minute PE twice a week

    Advice to Management

    Figure out how to relieve a lot of burden off of teachers.
    Increase the quality and quantity of recess.

  8. Helpful (1)

    "Preaches, but doesn't practice, "students first""

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - 5th Grade Teacher in Redwood City, CA
    Current Employee - 5th Grade Teacher in Redwood City, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I have been working at Rocketship Public Schools full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Pays well, staff is young and energetic, which can be fun and inspiring - everyone is "in it together," giving it their all every day. Consistent coaching and high expectations from administration is helpful and leads to lots of growth for new teachers.

    Cons

    Lack of behavioral support, high emphasis on test scores can lead to unsafe and unhappy classrooms. Combined with an overall lack of experience from staff, it can be a really tough place to work. Don't feel like network's heart is in the right place - they place good test scores above the safety and happiness of students and teachers.

    Advice to Management

    Invest in curricular changes that engage and empower students. Invest in experienced teachers and experience ISE and support staff that can help them.

    Rocketship Public Schools Response

    Jun 4, 2018 – Senior Director of Talent

    Thanks for your review and your service. I'm glad you find our coaching model helpful, but I'm sorry to hear your frustrations. Test scores are important to us only as a measure of individual student... More


  9. Helpful (1)

    "Enrichment Coordinatoor"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Enrichment Coordinator in San Jose, CA
    Current Employee - Enrichment Coordinator in San Jose, CA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Rocketship Public Schools full-time (More than 8 years)

    Pros

    Under-credential teaching opportunity , community based work closely with families and staff to create and facilitate a fun play environment.

    Cons

    full time but not enough pay because you are a none credentialed teacher

    Advice to Management

    Keep on doing what you are already doing , your training tolerance and performance makes me a better employee


  10. Helpful (9)

    "A sad mess of a network"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Teacher
    Current Employee - Teacher
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I have been working at Rocketship Public Schools full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    - There are great people here who are truly dedicated to providing kids the best education possible., despite the selfish intentions of the network
    - Families who want the world for their children and are willing to partner with you to get it.

    Cons

    Before I start, I just want to say that it is a travesty what is going on in this network and all the lies that they tell these families who are so ready to believe them because they really want what is best for their kids. This network is a joke in the charter world. They aren’t innovative as they would like you to believe, but just unbelievable cheap and money hungry. Preston, the CEO, is the worst of them. He feigns listening and caring, but nothing changes. Money is the only priority, regardless if the kids and staff suffer consequences. This mentality affects everyone in the network, especially the kids.

    - As a teacher, you are worked to the bone. On average, you work 12 hours per day (M - F) and at least 8 hours over the weekend. If you make 60k per year, you are really making about $14 an hour working at Rocketship. The other school districts have higher pay with less hours (like 40 hours a week). Given this, there is no reason to work here unless you want to be overworked and underpaid.
    - The school leaders and their management are so inexperienced and don't know how to manage staff and their schools. People are promoted so quickly because people are constantly leaving. No one actually knows what they are doing. At the end, the kids suffer the most.
    - What are you doing, you may ask? Making tons of copies (there are no textbooks), re-writing poorly created lesson plans, and doing whatever is the ‘flavor of the week’ from school leaders. They will tell you that you will get lesson plans to work from, but they are truly the lowest quality that I’ve ever seen. They’re written by people who have 2-3 years teaching experience that barely know what they are doing. The network is so cheap that they allow this to go on even though kids are always underperforming.
    - Kids are seen as money bags. They stuff kids in your room because they want more money. Imagine having a room of 32 Kindergarteners with no teacher aid and numerous behavior issues, all with no support from admin. This is normal at a Rocketship school. These kids spend nearly 9 hours a day at school, but only get one 15 minute recess, which explains the behavior problems. Kids with severe behavior problems are constantly coddled rather than disciplined. They are afraid to do this because it makes them look bad. Its a safety hazard to have kids intentionally throwing pencils at other kids’ faces or trying to stab their classmates. This happens all the time, leaving teachers afraid in their own classrooms. Admin leaves these issues all to you, so if this happens in your room, its your fault. Parents complain, but nothing gets done.
    - The data here is bad, really bad. They lie and say that they are doing all of these things to improve outcomes for kids, but kids are always pushed through to the next grade level, whether they have the necessary skills or not. They are quick to blame you for your students’ shortcomings, even if they have been in the same school for years. Their test scores are on par or below the neighborhood schools. Don’t promise that you can do more when you clearly can’t.
    - All they care about is test scores. There is no joy in teaching because you are teaching to the test. If you really want to do what’s best for kids, this not where to do it. This is not what an education is supposed to be. Kids only learn math and literacy. They spend at least 2 hours a day in front of a computer screen. They don’t get the chance to do anything creative or fun. Kids are taught to be robots and expect the minimum of what is supposed to be a solid education.

    If you decide to join this network in any capacity, this is what you are signing up for. If you are still thinking about it, read these other reviews. They are not exaggerating. Join at your own risk.

    Advice to Management

    Even with all the internal feedback you get, you refuse to change. You are doing a disservice to the community you claim to care about and serve. I have no advice for you because you wouldn’t take it anyway.

    Rocketship Public Schools Response

    Jun 1, 2018 – Co-Founder/CEO

    I’m sorry you’ve grown frustrated by your experience at Rocketship. Can we do better? Absolutely. But few schools do better than Rocketship when it comes to serving our communities.

    Rocketship is... More


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