Against Community Wishes, State Approves Rocketship Mt Diablo
Contra Costa County is getting something it does not want — a Rocketship school. The State Board of Education today approved Rocketship’s charter school petition that board members admitted was flawed. Board members stated that although the petition was flawed, it could be fixed with technical amendments. One board member, Patricia Ann Rucker, stated that the petition was deeply flawed and went to say that she was going to hold Rocketship accountable by asking them to promise to do better in the future (given that she wouldn’t be on the board when they return for a renewal). We have documented numerous times when Rocketship broke promises to the public in the past. It’s hard to imagine Rocketship behaving differently this time.
It is particularly sad that Rocketship has brought its divisive politics to another community. Rocketship came to San Jose, to the Washington community 6 years ago, and sewed division into a formerly united community. They quickly replicated into other communities with a toxic mix of ultra aggressive recruiting and half truths about local schools. It’s sad that they might export the same noxious rhetoric to another community.
Contra Costa County will need to organize and communicate the real truth about Rocketship. Folks in Milwaukee Wisconsin organized early against Rocketship and did a fantastic job of limiting enrollment by simply communicating the truth about Rocketship in a widely distributed flyer. If Rocketship moves forward in Contra Costa County, the community will need to do the same there.