Clearlake Capital-Backed Discovery Education to Acquire DreamBox Learning  

Charlotte, NC — Discovery Education, a global education technology company backed by Clearlake Capital Group, L.P. (together with its affiliates, “Clearlake”), today announced it has agreed to acquire DreamBox Learning®, a PK-12 education technology provider serving more than 6 million students and 600,000 educators nationwide. DreamBox Learning’s current investors Elliott Investment Management L.P. and TPG’s The Rise Fund will retain minority stakes in the company.  Financial terms were not disclosed. 

Headquartered in Bellevue, WA, DreamBox Learning offers the only dual-discipline solution rated “Strong” by Johns Hopkins University’s in both mathematics and reading. Through its high-quality adaptive learning solutions independently proven to accelerate student growth, DreamBox Learning empowers educators with data analytics and content-specific professional development solutions to complement instruction.

“Discovery Education is excited to welcome DreamBox Learning, a brand synonymous with quality, research-based math and reading edtech solutions to our growing family of services,” said Discovery Education Chief Executive Officer Jeremy Cowdrey. “Combining an expertise in learning science with adaptive, effective instructional solutions, DreamBox Learning’s solutions can help students excel regardless of who they are or where they live. Through this latest acquisition, Discovery Education is better positioned to broaden its impact on student success by providing our existing network of partner school systems access to DreamBox Learning’s collection of supplemental math, reading, and professional learning solutions.” …Read More

FCC proposes $200M for K-12 cybersecurity

Key points:

  • The FCC is calling attention to the urgent need for more tools–including funding–to combat K-12 cybersecurity risks
  • A new proposal would allocate up to $200 million over three years to harden cyber defenses and determine the most effective methods to protect schools and libraries
  • See related article: Are ransomware attacks the new snow days?

Federal Communications Commission Chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel is asking her fellow Commissioners to support a proposal that would take further steps to enhance cybersecurity protections to protect school networks.

In a speech before the School Superintendents Association and the Association of School Business officers, Rosenworcel said she would be sharing with her colleagues a plan to create a pilot program to invest in cybersecurity services for eligible K-12 schools and libraries.…Read More

IXL and Fayette County Public Schools Partner to Boost Academic Achievement and Personalize Learning for All Students

LEXINGTON, Kentucky  — IXL, the personalized learning platform used by more than 14 million students, has announced a new partnership with Fayette County Public Schools (FCPS) in Kentucky. As part of the collaboration, the state’s second-largest K-12 school system will now use IXL’s award-winning platform district-wide to boost academic achievement in math, English language arts, science, social studies and Spanish. IXL is used by nearly 40 percent of all K-12 students in Kentucky, accounting for more than 283,000 learners. 

Fayette County Public Schools strives to provide a world-class education and positive learning environment to more than 40,000 students from the Lexington area. FCPS began using IXL to support its special education and English language learner communities, and recently expanded its implementation district-wide after successfully piloting the platform. 

The district highly values IXL Analytics because it provides educators with data that allows them to track student achievement across schools and identify any gaps in knowledge. This information can then be used to quickly intervene and provide students with the support they need to succeed.…Read More

Turnitin AI Detection Feature Reviews More Than 65 Million Papers

OAKLAND, Calif.  Today,  Turnitin announced that more than 65 million papers have been reviewed since the April launch of its new feature that detects similarities to AI writing. The company also announced that of those 65 million papers, over 2.1 million – 3.3 percent – have been flagged as having at least 80 percent AI writing present. Nearly 6.7 million – 10.3 percent – have over 20 percent AI writing present. Tracking the overall detection rate illustrates that generative AI has made its way into classrooms, however, whether this is acceptable or not is determined by educators themselves. 

“In just over three months, Turnitin’s new AI detection feature is being used widely and it is giving educators data they have asked for since ChatGPT first became free to the public in November 2022,” said Annie Chechitelli, chief product officer at Turnitin. “Since the release, nearly 98 percent* of Turnitin institutions have AI writing detection enabled within their Turnitin workflow in at least one of their active accounts.” 

Chechitelli added, “Sharing usage and indication rates is one way that we can help improve understanding of the presence and use of generative AI in their teaching and learning practices. Given the urgency expressed by educators about these challenges and the public’s interest in AI text creation and AI text detection, we are committed to sharing these insights so that we can all begin to understand the trends that are currently shaping education.”…Read More

BenQ Education Partners With ANTON Learning App

COSTA MESA, Calif. — BenQ, an internationally renowned provider of visual display solutions, announced that the ANTON learning app is now available on BenQ Boards. Trusted by over 15 million learners and teachers in over 60,000 schools, the ANTON learning app features learning material across a multitude of subjects, with the goal of making learning fun for students and easy for teachers to create and deliver engaging lessons. This partnership strengthens BenQ’s commitment to providing direct access to the apps and learning software that educators use daily from their BenQ Boards for a more streamlined, future-ready classroom.

“We’re steadfast in our mission to make it as easy as possible for educators to use the BenQ Board while helping students achieve great outcomes,” said Bob Wudeck, senior director of business development at BenQ Education. “ANTON is widely used by thousands of teachers. This is a great addition to the many resources now available in our BenQ Boards and is another step in bridging the gap between traditional teaching methods and cutting-edge technology that will help teachers shape the future of learning.”

The ANTON learning app and online learning portal are part of a standards-aligned curriculum available in multiple languages. Boasting over 100,000 exercises and 200 exercise types, it contains interactive elements, feedback, games, and explanations aimed at supporting and engaging young people in learning. It covers English, math, science, social studies, languages, and music, following set lessons with exercises in each topic. Users are able to select the subject that they wish to focus on and then follow scaffolded exercises developed to help them understand the material. Students can earn coins through their learning to spend on fun games and avatars.  Teachers are able to create classes, assign homework, and track the learning progress of their students. This information can then be used to personalize any learning or to bridge the learning between school and home.…Read More

YouScience® Administers Over 1 Million Certification Exams In The 2022-2023 Academic Year

AMERICAN FORK, UTAH (PRWEB) — YouScience®, the leading technology provider dedicated to closing the growing skills gap between students and employers, is proud to announce that it has administered over 1 million certification exams to high school students across the U.S., during the 2022-23 academic year. With  industry-recognized certifications, students can demonstrate and quantify their skills to share with future employers. This significant milestone illustrates the company’s commitment to bridging the skill and labor gap in the United States and equipping the future workforce with essential industry skills.

The nation faces a  critical challenge in matching available jobs with skilled workers. As industries evolve and technology advances at a rapid pace, traditional education systems struggle to keep up with the changing demands of the labor market. Recognizing this pressing issue, YouScience has developed a  comprehensive solution to empower high school students and ensure they possess the necessary skills for success in the workforce.

With its innovative platform,  YouScience® Brightpath, the company offers students an opportunity to explore their aptitudes, interests, and strengths, providing them with valuable insights into potential career paths. The platform utilizes a unique combination of aptitude testing and career discovery tools, enabling students to identify and align their natural abilities with the skills required in various industries.…Read More

Georgia Department of Education (GaDOE) Names Curriculum Associates’ i-Ready® Assessment a Qualified Dyslexia Screening Tool for Grades K–3

NORTH BILLERICA, Mass.—The GaDOE recently named Curriculum Associates’ i-Ready Assessment as a Qualified Dyslexia Screening Tool for Grades K–3. School districts across the state can now use the program’s online Diagnostic and offline literacy assessment tasks to support with the identification and referral of students who exhibit characteristics of dyslexia. Today, the i-Ready program serves more than 11.5 million students and approximately one-third of all Grades K–8 students in the United States, including approximately 485,000 students in Georgia.

“It is so important that teachers have effective tools to identify students who may be at risk for dyslexia,” said Elizabeth Bassford, vice president of content and implementation at Curriculum Associates. “Now teachers across Georgia can use i-Ready’s single assessment along with its offline literacy assessment tasks to complete the screening and identification process, and develop individualized, data-driven instruction to support each student who will benefit from that specificity.”

All programs named to GaDOE’s Qualified Dyslexia Screening Tool list undergo a comprehensive review and demonstrate that they address—and measure—specific components. These components include phonological awareness and phonemic awareness, sound symbol recognition, alphabet knowledge, decoding skills, encoding skills, rapid naming, accuracy of word reading on grade-level text, and sight word reading efficiency skills.…Read More

Swing Education Raises $38 Million in Series C Funding

SAN FRANCISCO  – Swing Education, an online marketplace that connects schools and substitute teachers, announced today $38 million in Series C funding. The funding round was led by funds advised by Apax Partners LLP (“Apax”), a leading global private equity advisory firm, and by edtech investment firm Reach Capital. The funding enables Swing Education to invest in its growth and better address the nation-wide substitute teacher shortage.

This financing follows a 2018 Series B funding co-led by GV (formerly Google Ventures) and Owl Ventures and a seed round from a consortium that included Social Capital, Kapor Capital, Moment Ventures, Ulu Ventures, Red House Education, and Edovate Capital.

Swing believes that every classroom deserves a teacher, and every student deserves to learn without disruption. Since its founding in 2015, Swing has worked to improve the experience of being a substitute teacher and made it easier for K-12 schools to grow and manage their substitute teacher pools. Swing currently works with over 2,800 school partners and in the 2022-23 school year has supported these schools in filling over one million instructional hours with substitute teachers. …Read More

One8 Foundation Announces $5.7m In Statewide Grants For Districts To Implement Ignite! Reading’s Virtual, One-On-One Literacy Tutoring Program

BOSTON – The One8 Foundation today announced it is providing over $5.7 million in grants to 13 Massachusetts school districts to implement Ignite! Reading’s one-on-one, virtual-powered literacy tutoring for 3,000 first grade students this fall.

The One8 Foundation is expanding schools’ ability to access programs like Ignite! Reading by providing grants to schools that offset the costs of adopting new programs. The 13 districts were selected after fulfilling several criteria, including the use of high-quality literacy materials, alignment to Science of Reading principles, and strong practices related to progress monitoring of students.

Ignite! Reading provides school districts with one-to-one virtual tutoring that teaches every student the foundational skills they need to become confident, independent readers. Ignite! Reading pairs developing readers with expert tutors who deliver daily, 15-minute, Science of Reading-based instruction to target specific decoding gaps. During the last school year, students in the Ignite! Reading program recorded an average of 2.4 weeks of reading progress for every week in the program with no achievement gap for students of color, students with IEPs, multilingual learners or students receiving free or reduced-price lunches.

“We strongly believe in the Science of Reading’s power to unlock learning opportunities and that first grade is the critical point for students to garner the necessary phonics skills they need to unlock independent reading to succeed in school and beyond. That’s why we’re excited to connect school districts serving thousands of students with Ignite! Reading, an innovative and effective model that is transforming literacy outcomes in Massachusetts and across the country. This work has the power to transform the academic trajectory of students who participate, rapidly accelerating their progress to becoming independent readers,” said Joanna Jacobson, a trustee and President of the One8 Foundation.

“We are grateful to the One8 Foundation for investing in evidence-based literacy programs that will supercharge learning outcomes for thousands of students throughout Massachusetts. And we’re thrilled to partner with school districts across the Commonwealth that are eager to deliver results,” said Jessica Reid Sliwerski, Co-Founder & CEO of Ignite! Reading. “With students learning to read at twice the rate that would be expected in a traditional classroom, our one-on-one, high-dosage tutoring model is not just transforming how kids are taught to read, but also how literacy instruction is being operationalized in schools. One8’s support will help accelerate this progress and ensure the students who need this intervention are reading by the end of first grade.”

Ignite! Reading first started working in Massachusetts early in 2022 through a pilot program with Worcester Public Schools. Since that time, Worcester Public Schools has expanded its work with Ignite to reach over 350 students during the 2022-23 school year. Students in Worcester receiving Ignite! tutoring have, on average, progressed at over twice the typical rate of progress for students not receiving tutoring. “This type of highly differentiated support has been totally game-changing for our students who struggle most with reading, allowing them to build their skills and confidence,” said Sam FanFan, Principal at Burncoat Prep Elementary School, one of the Worcester schools that is participating in the program this year.

The following districts were awarded grants:

  • Boston Renaissance Charter Public School
  • Chelsea Public Schools
  • Clinton Public Schools
  • Fall River Public Schools
  • Hoosac Valley Regional School District
  • Leicester Public Schools
  • Milford Public Schools
  • Pittsfield Public Schools
  • Quaboag Regional School District
  • Randolph Public Schools
  • Revere Public Schools
  • Waltham Public Schools
  • Westfield Public Schools

In addition to Massachusetts, Ignite! Reading is currently partnering with schools and districts in Arkansas, California, Colorado, Indiana, Louisiana, New York, Ohio, and Oregon, with further plans to expand nationwide.

About One8 Foundation
The One8 education team identifies, supports, and scales high-impact applied learning programs that engage students actively in their learning and prepare them for success in a rapidly changing, data-rich world. One8 is committed to building a future where high-quality applied learning opportunities, oriented around STEM and 21st century skills, that make learning relevant, stimulating, and rewarding, are a regular part of the student experience, driving impact for all students. Learn more at:

About Ignite! Reading
Ignite! Reading’s mission is to ensure that every student is an independent reader by the end of first grade. The organization was co-founded by CEO Jessica Reid Sliwerski and Evan Marwell, Executive Chairman of Ignite! Reading and CEO of EducationSuperHighway. Ignite! Reading pairs schools with a dedicated literacy specialist and a team of virtual reading tutors, all highly trained in the Science of Reading, who deliver 1:1 daily instruction to students focused on their specific decoding gaps. Ignite! Reading’s data-driven approach, provided by caring and skilled tutors, gives kids the know-how and confidence they need to thrive as fluent readers. The Ignite! Reading program, delivered 15 minutes per day during the school day, takes the burden of differentiated instruction off of teachers and has an impact immediately. For more information about Ignite! Reading, visit:…Read More

Are substitutes the answer to the teacher shortage?

Key points:

  • Substitute teachers are already critical to the school environment
  • Could funds be allocated to help substitutes find a long-term path to teaching?

California is investing $350 million in teacher residencies, recognizing the need for effective teachers, which too many of our classrooms are missing. But this big bet isn’t working. Why? Too many people can’t afford to take on the financial liability to train for the position.  

If we know the approach isn’t working, we need to look toward another solution: Substitute teachers.  …Read More