By now many of you have heard that we’re adding five unbelievable edtech startups to our campus for our Winter ‘17 Breakthrough cohort, and this week was the kickoff. The Breakthrough Program, one of two accelerators here at LearnLaunch, focuses on post-seed stage companies in one of the most critical growth phases of their life.
Former LearnLaunch Accelerator member Skookii makes it simple for schools to collect payment electronically for field trips, lunches, fundraising, athletics, clubs, and after-school programs, all at no cost to users. Since fully launching in May, 115 schools and youth organizations in Arizona have signed on, with hundreds more poised to follow suit, including some of the state’s largest district schools. Partnering with the Arizona Rural Schools Association this past summer also provided an avenue for increased clientele.
LearnLaunch, along with co-host MIT Office of Digital Learning, unveiled today the full agenda for the upcoming Across Boundaries Conference, to be held on February 2-3, 2017 at the Hynes Convention Center in Boston. With a theme of “Personalizing Pathways to Learning and Careers,” the conference will bring together professionals from across the edtech sector, to discuss critical challenges toward moving education practice forward, to play with cutting- edge products, and to learn from leaders in the field.
As noted on the site of former LearnLaunch Accelerator company Education Modified, “the collective memory of a student’s teachers—past and present—is one of the most valuable resources available to [his or her] future success in education and beyond.” Yet with the unique challenges facing special education teachers and thus the incredibly high resignation rate within five years, that resource could very well be unavailable to future educators without the right tools.
LearnLaunch Accelerator, the leading education technology startup program, today announced the first cohort of its second Fund, LearnLaunch Accelerator II, as well as the expansion of its investment staff. Five early-stage education technology companies will participate in LearnLaunch’s Breakthrough program beginning on January 9th. Companies receive up to $120k in financing as well as an intensive two-month personalized curriculum designed to stimulate company growth and assist in raising capital.
This holiday season, members of the LearnLaunch community will celebrate across the globe, in body and in spirit. Whether we are hiking in the California desert, eating tamales (yum) or bloody beef (…less yum) with Texan family, or welcoming the New Year Colombian-style with grapes and red underwear, we will all be sending up our wishes for peace on earth. One other thing we all have in common: specific wish lists of edtech gifts, for giving and for getting. Read on to find our recommendations and our favorite gift-giving traditions.
Insights on Software Piloting in an Urban School District: MassNET’s 5 Principals for Successful Implementation
MIT-created edtech startup Authess, a member of LearnLaunchX Accelerator’s spring 2015 class, has created a product that submits candidates or current employees to complex, open-ended, job-specific problems rather than personality or aptitude tests. They believe their complex analyses of people’s actions in real-world scenarios will provide employers with the best indicator of how efficiently and competently one will perform in a given role, not just how well someone tests or how suitable his or her background is. Their product—based on machine learning and data analytics—can broaden opportunity, close skill gaps, and reduce organizational risk.
What’s the Achilles’ heel of many edtech entrepreneurs? They’re brilliant and successful.
It’s not their fault, of course. Through a combination of natural ability, hard work, and outstanding support, they’ve come to excel in their chosen areas. But this means they may be unaware of what it’s like to be an average college student in the U.S.—and even less knowledgeable about the students who stand to gain the most from educational technology.
In a recent Xconomy article about Boston’s booming EdTech cluster, noted venture capitalist Jeff Bussgang rightly points out that Boston has all the right ingredients for a thriving EdTech sector. The 400+ EdTech companies and 20,000+ industry jobs clearly support that premise. But, Bussgang sanguinely concludes, “there’s been no breakout edtech company in Boston.”