A response by NPR for what many are calling a hit piece on the reputation of charter school Rocketship education has been non-existent. Staff and supporters of the charter school demanded an answer from NPR, and the article’s author Anya Kamenetz for various discrepancies in the article titled “High Test Scores-But At What Cost?” In the piece, Mrs.Kamenetz comments on the high-pressure classrooms, strict bathroom rules and the number of unsatisfied parents. Many supporters of Rocketship Education point out that Mrs.Kamenetz did not fully immerse herself in the classroom nor bothered to see the bigger picture of current challenges. As one administrator put it, “much like Obamacare, the piece is deep but narrow.”
Rocketship Education is based out of the San Jose Bay Area with an additional three locations across the country. Although Rocketship Education is very similar to other charter schools, Rocketship has been able to stand out of the crown through the use of technology in the classroom. The goal of Rocketship education is to close the achievement gap between students in wealthier areas of the community and students who are less fortunate. The school was founded in 2006 and since then has been able to reach and education over 18,000 students.
Another area that supporters of the school did not take quite well is the use of the word “company” within the NPR article. The word company to those not familiar with Rocketship Education can come across as if they are in it for a profit when in fact half of their funding is provided by the taxpayer and any additional funding is collected from private donors. Mrs.Kamenetz defended herself on Twitter by saying that she is proud of her work and the comments giving to her were from an interview between a satisfied parent and an angry parent. Supporters are still attempting to theorize why the article was written the way it was, was it mean as an anti-reform zeitgeist or merely to create controversy and therefore exposure, we may never know.