Leading American Educator And Journalist, Esther Wojcicki, Joins Award-Winning Edtech Startup Pressto Ai

New York, NY — EdTech startup Pressto AI is thrilled to announce that Esther Wojcicki will be joining the leadership team as the Chief Academic Advisor. Wojcicki brings a plethora of experience to the role, ranging from journalist and educator to speaker and author. As Chief Academic Advisor, she will be guiding pedagogy, building a teacher task force, and creating a library of exemplary lessons for students. Having built the best student journalism program in the world, Esther and Pressto are together distributing her exemplary lessons to millions of students.

“Using AI to develop new and useful tools that help teachers improve their students’ education is at the core of empowering a successful next generation, and Pressto is doing just that,” says Esther Wojcicki, Pressto Chief Academic Advisor. “This means adapting to how we approach teaching overall to remain relevant with the times, so students not only learn the skills needed, but also become intrinsically motivated to learn more in all subject areas.”

Wojcicki is widely heralded as the one of the most successful parents, educators and journalists in the United States. She created a high school journalism program that changed the lives of thousands of kids, inspired Silicon Valley legends including Steve Jobs and raised three daughters – YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki, Fulbright Scholar Janet Wojcicki, and 23&Me Founder Anne Wojcicki – each of whom have become distinctively successful.…Read More

gener8tor and ECMC Group’s Inaugural OnRamp Education & Workforce Innovation Accelerator Cohort Addresses Learning & Labor Challenges with Creative, Tech-first Solutions

Each Startup in the Accelerator Will Receive a $100K Cash Investment, Three-month Coaching Program & Other Resources

June 17, 2021 — MINNEAPOLIS, MINNESOTA — gener8tor, a concierge startup accelerator program, and ECMC Group, a Minneapolis-based nonprofit organization with a mission to help students succeed,  have selected five startups to participate in the inaugural OnRamp Education & Workforce Innovation Accelerator. The 2021 cohort includes BeeReaders, ChalkTalk, Paragon One, SimiDigi and SkillCat.

“We’ve seen a robust influx of new startups and leaders in education and workforce industries that have introduced solutions to make resources more accessible, streamlined, tech-enabled, and cost-effective,” said Eddie Olson, Managing Director of the OnRamp Education & Workforce Innovation Accelerator at gener8tor. “Our new cohort showcases a class of visionary founders who have leveraged their industry knowledge and built customized technology to help tool and match trade companies with skilled workers, offer customized curriculums to aid busy teachers, empower a new generation of Spanish-speaking students and improve employment accessibility, among other impressive tools.”…Read More

imagiLabs raises $300k pre-seed to further bridge the gender gap in coding

imagiLabs (www.imagilabs.com), the all-female founded startup that makes coding more accessible to young girls, has raised $300k (€250k) in pre-seed funding, allowing it to further equip the next generation of working women with critical coding skills.

Angel investors participating in the round include Eros Resmini, Founder & Managing Partner at The Mini Fund and the former CMO of messaging platform Discord; David Baszucki, CEO of gaming giant Roblox; members of Atomico’s Angel Program; and Propel Capital, the investment arm of Stockholm’s leading tech incubator Sting. 

A number of high profile proponents of gender equality in technology participated in the round. The financing will be used to maintain imagiLabs’ significant international growth and to continue to foster an engaged community of young girl coders, who use the imagiLabs apps to learn from each other, share coding tips and designs, and build relationships.…Read More

Tech Startup Debuts Revolutionary Distance Learning Platform in Partnership with NYC School

AuraNexus has partnered with the Marymount School of New York to debut its EdTech interactive video platform providing students and teachers with personalized learning at scale. The technology is the first of its kind to pair video with vocal recognition, delivering much-needed innovation within the education industry grappling with COVID-19.

As the pandemic continues to uproot conventional learning models, schools throughout the country are looking for new and effective tools to provide students with a virtual classroom experience. The need for such tools led AuraNexus to develop proprietary technology geared to address the issues with distance learning and to strengthen the way students interact and communicate with their teachers. Through user-led, voice-activated conversational video, the platform takes pre-recorded video content and leverages artificial intelligence (AI) to enhance engagement and retention. Students now have the ability to “talk” to their teachers 24/7.

The company was co-founded by Andrew Kimmel, a network television producer ( The Bachelor, Dancing With the Stars, The Great Christmas Light Fight) and former Head of Live Video for BuzzFeed News, as he looked to create a new medium to make viewers active participants with videos. “With the rise of vocal recognition technology, there is still a lack of human-to-human interaction to go along with it. In having a real person respond directly to user questions, it gives the experience of a real conversation – something that isn’t available with chatbots or animations, but is desperately needed at this time,” said Kimmel.…Read More

What are this year’s top trends at SXSW EDU?

Connecting leaders across the learning lifecycle and around the world, SXSW EDU serves as a melting pot for the latest approaches to education. From more than 1,500 proposals received in PanelPicker to applicants for our startup and design competitions, we review a diverse array of content aligned to some of the biggest trends today. What follows is a curated list of the top 10 trends impacting teaching and learning as exhibited in the programming at SXSW EDU 2019. At a high level, this year’s trends represent a human-centered approach to empowering both the educator and student to define their own learning pathway.

AI, XR, & Blockchain: A New Era in EdTech
The advancement of emerging technology is laying the foundation for a new age of learning. With virtual worlds being built to extend the classroom and embedded AI to better track student development, experiential technology provides a new level of immersion. Though still in the early days of direct application in education, blockchain promises to establish a new digital infrastructure to authenticate knowledge acquisition and track a lifetime of learner competencies. Collectively these new applications of tech are shifting its role in the classroom.

Related sessions:
AI Enabling Personalized Learning at Scale
Blockchain: Hype or Enabler for K-12 Data Privacy
Education Meets Blockchain and the Sharing Economy…Read More

Beware of ransomware: Here’s how to protect your district

A new, disturbing pattern has cropped back up that is reminiscent of some nasty behavior from the early days of Internet nefarious exploits: targeting schools and students and the innocent. Ransomware attacks have been making headlines in recent months—particularly as a threat to K-12. Both Roseburg (OR )Public Schools and Leominster (MA) Public Schools were two of the latest victims of cyber-abuse.

A history of hacking
21 years ago, I got a call at my first internet security startup company (Signal 9 Solutions, later acquired by McAfee) asking for help; a woman’s son had cognitive challenges and disabilities, and she thought he was the victim of hacking. She had seen a news piece about cyberhacking, and she thought this might be a case.

At the time, we focused on enterprise sales and cryptographic solutions, but we had accidentally invented the personal firewall for telecommuting, put a beta version of this new standalone personal firewall on our website, and started a forum talking about it.…Read More

Building a “startup culture” in schools

For most, start-ups and school districts couldn’t be more different, EdSurge reports. One is constantly changing, trying new things. The other is stuck in time, mandating a one-size-fits-all solution for unique situations.  In the Albemarle County School District, we see things a bit differently. At Albemarle County Schools in Virginia, we’ve come to support both district and school-level “skunkworks” innovation and design teams. By encouraging an entrepreneurial mentality in our schools, we are constantly exploring new kinds of learning spaces and pedagogies.  We are integrating digital technologies in meaningful ways and expanding the portfolio of customized, intra-district program options…

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