540 Families Celebrate Unanimous Vote for Rocketship Fuerza
by Maricela Guerrero, Principal, Fuerza Community Prep
Last night 540 families found out their school is a reality. I’m proud to share the Santa Clara County Office of Education trustees voted unanimously in support of our newest Rocketship school: Fuerza Community Prep, which will open this fall off Jackson Avenue.
“I get to come home and tell my little girl that her school is opening!” parent leader Lety Gomez told me after the decision. “The unanimous vote will help people realize that parent voice does make a difference. As engaged parents living in the community fighting for what’s right, it’s great to know our hard work is totally worth it and they do listen.”
Lety is one of hundreds of steadfast parents who have endured four long and passionate board meetings. Four nights of rooms packed by parents asserting their voice and advocating for their kids and community. Our families exhibited ganas and gusto for their new school for the last few months and I’m honored to stand alongside them as a Rocketship Rocketeer.
“I do not believe we are at a point in our history as a country where we can afford to let our kids be victims of a bankrupt system,” Board President Leon Beauchman said before the vote. “We have good teachers out there but we need more innovation in our system if we are going to be able to provide our kids with what they need to be successful. Tonight, I will be voting to give parents choice because they know what’s best for their kids.”
Our families voted to name our school Fuerza because it means “power” or “force.” That power has been realized in the County’s 7-0 vote in favor of Rocketship. But parents also include Community Prep in our new school’s name because we are striving for a community partnership with Alum Rock to create great educational opportunities for all kids.
“My hope is that Alum Rock does see the benefits of charter schools and works with them to continue excellence in its trajectory,” said Trustee Grace Mah before voting.
It has been a long road for our families, students, and the community. Since December our families have endured countless challenges and obstacles to make Rocketship Fuerza Community Prep a reality.
Their sense of urgency and ganas illuminated our path and propels us forward. We worked together because we realized that our school community is the product of the collective and its sum is greater than that of its individual parts. Rocketship Fuerza families took on the most difficult challenges and worked together with each other and the entire community to find the best way to surpass them. And they did. I am very proud and honored to lead Rocketship Fuerza Community Prep to success and beyond!
Con ganas, fuerza, y corazon,
Take a moment to send a thank you e-mail to the SCOEE Trustees for their leadership and support of more great school choices for parents.
Maricela Guerrero recently was the Principal of Rocketship Mateo Sheedy. Under her leadership, students at Rocketship Mateo Sheedy earned a remarkable 925 API. In subsequent years, Maricela has led her staff to continue making incredibly strong gains for the students at Mateo Sheedy. Maricela was a founding teacher at Rocketship, were she taught second, third and fourth grade. Prior to Rocketship, she was also a founding teacher at L.U.C.H.A., where she taught third and fourth grade. An elementary teacher since 2001, Maricela has taught grades first thru eighth grade in the Alum Rock Unified district. She received her B.A. in Latin American Studies with minors in Education from the University of California, Santa Cruz and a Master’s Degree in Education from the University of Phoenix.
Published on June 19, 2014