News Release: ROCKETSHIP EDUCATION EXPANDS SUCCESSFUL ST MATH PILOT IN 2012-13
Leading K-5 Public Charter Announces Expansion After Successful Pilot Years with MIND Research Institute’s Blended Math Program
Palo Alto, Calif., September 4, 2012 — Rocketship Education, a leading non-profit public charter school system, will begin using the non-profit MIND Research Institute’s ST Math® program with all students in grades 2-5 across its seven schools in San Jose this fall.
Rocketship Education started piloting the ST Math instructional software program with third graders in Spring 2010. Rocketship’s schools, which serve students who are 90 percent low-income and 75 percent English Language Learners (ELL), saw immediate success with the program. By 2011, the charter network brought JiJi, ST Math’s penguin, to grades four and five. This fall, they will use ST Math for all students in grades 2-5 across seven campuses.
Rocketship leverages ST Math in its Learning Labs as part of the Rocketship Blended Learning Model, which allows its educators to provide 1:1 individualized instruction, team mentoring and self-paced learning time. Through this approach, approximately 90 percent of Rocketship’s lowest-performing students move out of the bottom quartile within a year and the majority of Rocketeers achieve three years of academic growth for every two years in school. ST Math is a critical component that has helped Rocketship achieve these extraordinary results.
Rocketship staff was initially unsure about the level of the engagement or interest the program would draw for their students. Now, Rocketship has confidence that the program is a positive solution for its students.
“As a former math teacher who relied heavily on manipulatives and visuals, I am ceaselessly impressed with how ST Math similarly presents material in a way that builds rich and flexible understandings,” said Andrew Elliott- Chandler, Principal of Rocketship Si Se Puede. “This is not rote practice, this is real number sense.”
“We have been very impressed with the level of engagement and motivation that followed piloting ST Math,” said Aylon Samouha, Rocketship’s Chief Schools Officer. “After a year of success, ST Math engages students in math learning in a way that drives real results.”
ST Math uniquely tackles math learning challenges with visual games and logical reasoning. For a charter network with a large ELL student population, this approach overcame learning barriers to improve the rate of learning for many students.
MIND also worked extensively with Rocketship to ensure the ST Math program worked within Rocketship’s Blended Learning Model. Since students often access their online programs outside of the classroom, all pro- grams must be able to be utilized without the classroom teacher directly facilitating.
“MIND Research is pleased to bring its digital math content to Rocketship Education’s students and teachers,” said Andrew R. Coulson, President of the Education Division at MIND Research Institute. “We believe our visual, conceptual, game-based introduction of math concepts without any language barrier is a perfect fit for Rocketship’s mission to eliminate the achievement gap, and it’s our objective to help Rocketship achieve even higher school performance.”
About MIND Research Institute
The MIND Research Institute is a neuroscience and education research-based, non-profit corporation. MIND applies its distinctive visual approach to illustrating math concepts and building problem-solving skills as the basis for innovative, research-proven math education programs for elementary and secondary schools. MIND’s programs currently reach over 479,000 students and 16,000 teachers in more than 1,375 schools in 26 states. For more information, visit www.mindresearch.net.
About Rocketship Education
Rocketship Education (www.rsed.org) is the leading non-profit public school system for low-income elementary students, eliminating the achievement gap by building a national school system of K-5 charter schools. Rocket- ship has pioneered the transformative Rocketship Public School Model, which combines teacher development, parent empowerment and individualized learning to improve student achievement. Rocketship’s goal is to elimi- nate the achievement gap between low- and high-income communities across the country, allowing Rocketeers to succeed alongside their more affluent peers. Rocketship currently serves over 3,700 students, of whom nearly 90 percent are low-income, through seven charter schools in San Jose.