What Investors See in a ‘Highly Fragmented and Under-Teched’ Early Childhood Education Market

With widespread lockdowns and closures last year, the critical role that schools and child care centers play in supporting children may never have been clearer. As it turns out, society is not as productive when working parents don’t have child care. That fact is not lost on investors who foresee greater demand for early-education programs … Read more

SchooLinks Raises $7M to Take on a Giant in K-12 College and Career Planning

Going after an industry giant in K-12 college and career planning wasn’t what Katie Fang originally had in mind when she started SchooLinks in 2015. Back then, it was a website where high school students and parents could research college options. Such services were a dime a dozen, she quickly learned. Three years later, she … Read more

Coursera’s IPO Filing Shows Growing Revenue and Loss During a Pandemic

This afternoon, Coursera filed its S-1 paperwork, offering a first look at how the Mountain View, Calif.-based online education provider is faring as it prepares to go public. And the numbers reveal both increasing growth and losses during a year of great disruption to schools and businesses impacted by the pandemic. Coursera reported $293.5 million … Read more

GSV Ventures Raises $180M Fund in Search of Global Edtech Opportunities

With an investment fund, a conference and a constellation of advisory services, GSV may be the closest thing to an omnipresent brand in education investing. But even after over a decade of making and facilitating deals, the Chicago-based firm still sees other untapped opportunities and areas for growth. Specifically, across the ocean. “We’ve been spending … Read more

A New SEL Program Finds Its ‘Way’ to Schools, Survival and $1.5M in Seed Funding

Patrick Cook-Deegan once wanted to build a school, one focused on helping high school students find purpose through attending to their mental health and well-being. It would be based in Palo Alto, Calif., which was rattled by clusters of suicides among the city’s teenagers. The school board turned down the idea. But Cook-Deegan found other … Read more

Newsela Raises $100M to Challenge K-12 Textbook Publishers, Eyes Acquisitions

Business news is packed with unicorns, and Newsela is the latest in education to join the herd after reaching the vaunted billion-dollar valuation. That status comes courtesy of a $100 million investment led by Franklin Templeton and existing investor TCV. Owl Ventures, Tao Capital Partners, Chan Zuckerberg Initiative and Waycross Ventures also contributed. Newsela, founded … Read more

Codecademy, an Early (and Now Profitable) Pioneer of Coding Education, Raises $40M in New Funding

Money has flowed into the edtech sector over the last twelve months. Bumper funding rounds and freshly minted unicorns are grabbing headlines, but there are questions about how long current investment appetite will last. Unlike other edtech startups seemingly on the fast track to big checks, Codecademy has been in the business for over a … Read more

Interplay Raises $18M to Build a Lynda.com for Essential Skilled Trades

Toilets remain one of humankind’s most ingenious engineering feats. But while the most advanced bidets can wash themselves (along with other parts), they can’t fix themselves—yet. Plumbing is just one of many good-paying skilled trades that remain in high demand but which have largely been glossed over by the education technology industry, says Doug Donovan, … Read more

Longtime Edtech Investor Reach Capital Raises $165M for Third Fund

Investments in U.S. education technology startups reached a record $2.2 billion in 2020. Across the globe, that figure surpassed $16 billion, marking a 32-fold increase from 2010. Few investors have watched, and fueled, the growth of the edtech industry as closely and consistently as Reach Capital, one of a handful of venture firms that has … Read more

Digital Courseware Provider Top Hat Gets $130M and a New CEO

Another balding founder of a tech company is passing the baton off to a successor. No, this is not the same shellshock as Jeff Bezos’ resignation letter, nor is the company anywhere as big as Amazon. But it could prove just as disruptive in the world of education publishing, where technology startups have been steadily … Read more