Linewize Acquires K-12 Web Filter and Firewall Provider Cipafilter

SAN DIEGO, Calif., March 11, 2022 – Linewize, a division of Family Zone (ASX: FZO), a rapidly growing education technology company, announced today the acquisition of Cipafilter, a web filter and firewall dedicated to educators nationwide. This marks the third acquisition in less than a year making Linewize one of the world’s largest K-12 digital safety providers, serving more than 10 million students globally and offering a suite of capabilities including compliance and filtering, classroom management, real-time monitoring and intervention, online safety education and more. Linewize’s parent company, Family Zone, acquired Cipafilter through the 100% acquisition of shares in Cipafilter’s holding company DerbyTech, Inc. Agreed consideration is $4.5 million in Family Zone shares at the 30-Day VWAP representing 13,116,316 Shares plus an estimated $3.0 million to be paid in cash. 

With an established reputation for quality and loyalty, Cipafilter provides schools with a web filter and firewall technology, in addition to valuable reporting and notification alerts. Having served the U.S. K-12 market for over two decades, the company supports more than 400,000 students. This acquisition perfectly aligns with Linewize’s growth strategy, further solidifying the company as a global EdTech leader. In addition to obtaining an increased client base, Linewize will now have access to more robust engineering and sales teams. 

“This acquisition is a testament to our continued growth. By merging our technology offerings and staff with that of Cipafilter, we are determined to further our mission to protect the digital journeys of students globally,” said Ross Young, executive vice president of Linewize. “Looking ahead, we remain committed to meeting the evolving needs of school districts and keeping students safe in the digital world.” …Read More

Emergent Bilingual Students Using Lexia English Scored Higher than Their Peers on California’s English Language Proficiency Assessment

BOSTON (March 9, 2022) – A 2020 report from the U.S. Department of Education stated that the number of Emergent Bilinguals – also known as English language learners – in U.S. public schools has increased by more than a million since 2000. A recent study on the Lexia® English Language Development (Lexia English) program found that emergent bilingual students who used the program scored an average of 15 points higher than nonusers on the English Language Proficiency Assessment for California (ELPAC) test.

The study focused on 2,034 emergent bilingual K-5 students across 21 schools in a mid-sized northern California district. During the 2020-21 school year, the district used Lexia English as part of a hybrid or remote instruction, primarily in English Learner (EL) or English as a Second Language (ESL) instructional periods.  Across all student groups, Lexia English users scored higher than non-Lexia English users. Compared to non-Lexia English users, Lexia English users scored higher regardless of their gender, race or ethnicity, eligibility for free-or-reduced price lunch, or language spoken at home.

All emergent bilingual students using Lexia English benefited from its culturally relevant pedagogy as well as its support of English language development through academic conversations. By focusing on the assets that each student brings to the classroom and having already mastered one language, they are able to build new language skills in a timely manner. In addition to their overall score being 15 points higher, on average, than peers who did not use the program, Lexia English users scored an average of 18 points higher on the ELPAC’s oral domain than nonusers. These results are consistent with Lexia English’s emphasis on speaking and supporting students’ English language development through academic conversations.…Read More

3 wireless technology trends to track in 2022

2021 was a year of tremendous challenges, but there were also incredible strides made in the world of wireless technology that have changed the way we live, work, and play–all for the better.

As technology evolves, there’s always plenty to be excited about. Today, over 300 million people have access to a 5G wireless network, so it’s hard to believe this innovation became available only three years ago. 5G has been described as a transformative technology, but most transformations happen steadily – they become “trends” that happen over time.

To that end, here are three trends I predict for 2022 that can have a lasting impact on families and businesses across the country.…Read More

IXL, Wyzant and Miami-Dade County Public Schools Partner to Provide Personalized Math Instruction

SAN MATEO, Calif.  — December  7, 2021 — IXL Learning, developer of personalized learning products used by more than 12 million students, announced an agreement with Miami-Dade County Public Schools (M-DCPS) to supply two of its award-winning platforms to the district’s 334,000 students and 17,500 teachers. More than 500 schools will use IXL to supplement math instruction and approximately 20,000 students can access one-on-one virtual tutoring opportunities through Wyzant, the nation’s largest tutoring network. 

Miami-Dade County Public Schools is the largest K-12 school system in Florida and the Southeastern United States, and the 4th-largest district in the country. It strives to provide a diverse community with learning experiences that improve academic achievement, emphasize social and emotional well-being, and enable all students to reach their full potential. To meet its goals, M-DCPS sought rigorous resources that enable educators to recover unfinished learning, track student progress and boost achievement in math. The district also needed tutoring support to help students hone math skills outside of school hours when parents or teachers aren’t available to help.

After a thorough search, M-DCPS realized that a large number of its educators were already successfully using IXL’s powerful platform and that its robust math curriculum was perfect for augmenting daily instruction. In addition, the district deeply appreciated that IXL Learning’s tutoring service, Wyzant, could seamlessly connect its students with experienced instructors to grow their math skills away from the classroom.  …Read More

Texthelp’s Literacy Support Tool, Read&Write, Hits New Milestone of 35 Million Users

WOBURN, Mass., Dec. 3, 2021 /PRNewswire/ — Texthelp, a global leader in literacy and accessibility technology, today announced that its literary support tool, Read&Write, is now used by 35 million people worldwide. Originally, Read&Write was developed to help users with low literacy and conditions such as dyslexia. Since then, Read&Write has been a staple in the company’s suite of products for more than 25 years. The product has become an important classroom and workplace product, supporting Texthelp’s vision of helping all people learn and understand.

Today, Texthelp is also honoring International Day of Persons with Disabilities, an international day of awareness to promote the well-being of persons with disabilities. Texthelp is committed to raising awareness of the barriers that people with disabilities often face. Together, we can make the world more accessible for all.

“Reaching a major milestone with our very first product, Read&Write, on International Day of Persons with Disabilities, is amazing,” said Martin McKay, founder and CEO of Texthelp. “Our team has continued to evolve our products and worked together to help create a world where everyone can understand and be understood. When we first developed Read&Write, our goal was to reach 1 million users. Surpassing that goal has been a great milestone and I’m excited to set our next goal at 100 million users.”…Read More

How scholastic esports helps students’ academic achievement

According to Newzoo, the live-streaming audience for games will hit 728.8 million viewers in 2021 globally. For reference, the NFL is projected to hit 141 million viewers.  Clearly, esports’ popularity is growing exponentially. However, many people are still unfamiliar with esports, especially the emergence of scholastic esports in education.

The utility of game-based learning in education has been known for a long time, but what is beginning to emerge is an understanding of how esports are having an impact in education. Due to the affordances of video games, esports promotes important qualities, forcing students to develop new skills and problem solve in novel situations bounded only by their imaginations.

Teachers who are pioneering esports programs can attest to this. Tyler Hahn, Director of the Cherokee Public Library in northwestern Iowa, has seen that “esports empowers learners to use the convergence [of] games and their own interests as a platform to acquire communication, collaboration, and problem-solving skills needed to thrive in all aspects of life”. His program is focused on developing college and career awareness services for middle school youth through esports and community engagement.…Read More

West Sound STEM Network Expands Partnership with Slooh to Engage More Students in Space Exploration

Washington Depot, Connecticut, October 29, 2021 – Slooh, the only organization offering live online telescope feeds of amazing astronomical events to students, and the West Sound STEM Network recently expanded their partnership to help more teachers and students throughout northwest Washington State engage in space exploration that is aligned with state and national standards. After successfully providing a number of Network member schools with access to Slooh’s robotic telescopes and patented Mission Interface last year, West Sound STEM Network is now expanding the program to reach 250 teachers and 10,000 students. This comes as Slooh works toward its goal of helping one million students nationwide experience the wonder of space from their classroom and home computers.

“Our partnership with Slooh is – and has been – highly inspirational for our teachers and students,” said Dr. Kareen Borders, executive director of the West Sound STEM Network. “Our schools are actively exploring the moon, Mars, and beyond in real time!”

Serving the Olympic and Kitsap peninsulas, the West Sound STEM Network is a public-private regional network committed to building PreK-career pathways to postsecondary credentials and a stronger STEM workforce. The cross-sector network of businesses, school districts, education agencies, higher education institutions, Career and Technical Education (CTE) practitioners and providers, government, military, community, Tribes, library systems, nonprofits, out-of-school providers, and workforce development agencies introduce and link students, teachers, and the community to high-quality STEM resources, such as Slooh.  …Read More

The STEM Careers Coalition Celebrates Manufacturing Day with Resources to Inspire the Creators, Doers, Makers, and Makers of Tomorrow in the Classrooms of Today

SILVER SPRING, MD (Wednesday, September 29, 2021) – Members of the STEM Careers Coalition – the first-of-its-kind national STEM initiative powered by corporate leaders and anchored in schools by Discovery Education – are helping students and educators explore modern manufacturing with no-cost resources designed to celebrate Manufacturing (MFG) Day. With the need to fill 4 million high-tech and high-skill positions in manufacturing over the next several years, MFG Day—which this year is observed on October 1st —helps inspire today’s students to become the creators, doers, and makers leading the manufacturing industry of tomorrow. Discovery Education is the worldwide edtech leader whose state-of-the-art digital platform supports learning wherever it takes place.

Created by The Manufacturing Institute – an association partner of the Coalition – MFG Day empowers communities to explore the world of modern manufacturing. In celebration of Manufacturing Day on October 1st, the STEM Careers Coalition offers educators, families, and students an engaging collection of standards-aligned content that supports learning anywhere. Sourced from industry-leading organizations such as Boeing, Sanofi, Stanley Black & Decker, Microsoft, the Caterpillar Foundation, the American Petroleum Institute, GAF, and the Arconic Foundation, the no-cost resources include:

Manufacturing-Focused Career Profiles
Explore the profiles of manufacturing professionals using the skills they learned in school to become the kind of problem solvers that make a difference. Make the connection from the classroom to careers and find out how all students can make it in manufacturing.…Read More

Oregon Department of Education Names i-Ready® Assessment an Approved Universal Screening Tool for Risk Factors of Dyslexia

NORTH BILLERICA, Mass., September 23, 2021—The Oregon Department of Education (ODE) recently named Curriculum Associates’ i-Ready Assessment to its Approved Universal Screening Tools for Risk Factors of Dyslexia list for the 2021–2022 school year. With the approval, schools across the state can now use the program’s Diagnostic and offline literacy assessment tasks to screen for risk factors of dyslexia and help provide data-driven instructional support to students in Grades K–1. Today, the award-winning i-Ready program serves more than 9.5 million students and 25 percent of all Grades K–8 students in the United States.

“Identifying potential risk factors of dyslexia is critical, both for students and their families,” said Rob Waldron, CEO of Curriculum Associates. “With i-Ready, Oregon educators can be assured they are using a valid and reliable assessment to determine if students show signs of dyslexia so they can deliver specialized reading interventions as needed.”

According to the ODE website, the Department is responsible for ensuring every student who is enrolled at a public school in the state for Grade K or Grade 1 receives a screening for risk factors of dyslexia. The Oregon Administrative Rule further requires the ODE to annually review and update the list of approved universal screeners for risk factors of dyslexia.…Read More

WeVideo Partners with KQED Youth Media Challenges for 2021-2022 School Year

Mountain View, Calif. (September 16, 2021) –  WeVideo, a leading cloud-based, collaborative multimedia creation platform, has joined forces with KQED as an official technology partner of the  KQED Youth Media Challenges, an initiative to help educators across the nation facilitate student civic engagement and media making. The partnership provides 2021-2022 school year Challenge participants with a complimentary six-month  WeVideo for Schools license for use on their submissions through June 2022. WeVideo’s production-proven multimedia platform is trusted by more than 38 million users worldwide, and through the collaboration, KQED Youth Media Challenges participants will be equipped with user-friendly media creation tools, empowering students from all backgrounds and ability levels to share their unique perspectives and stories across a range of topics with their peers and the public.

“WeVideo is committed to providing easy and accessible multimedia creation tools for use across education, business and personal projects. Our partnership with KQED brings our tools to all schools that want to participate in the Challenges, removing technology barriers for traditionally under-resourced schools and leveling the playing field so that students can share their voice and learn essential skills through exploring the creative process,” states Krishna Menon, CEO, WeVideo.

KQED Youth Media Challenges prompt critical thinking and foster civic engagement and are open to middle and high school students across the U.S. With 7 Challenges to choose from, students can explore a range of STEM, humanities and arts topics, and educators can access the supporting curriculum for free. KQED Youth Media Challenges welcome video, audio and graphic arts submissions, transforming traditional classrooms into spaces where students are active creators and producers. With these Challenges, students can build valuable media literacy skills and share their authentic voices beyond their classrooms. All Challenge submissions are published on the online showcase, and select pieces are broadcast to public media audiences on KQED shows and through partners.…Read More