Edtech company ClassEDU launched this month and secured $16 million in seed funding for some very pandemic-friendly education software.
The startup was cofounded by prominent D.C.-based entrepreneur Michael Chasen, cofounder and former CEO of Blackboard for 15 years. ClassEDU will use the fresh funding to bring its edtech software product, Class for Zoom, to market. Class for Zoom adds some everyday capabilities for educators, such as taking attendance, curating quizzes and grading.
“As the father of three school-age kids, I have a front row seat to how challenging remote learning is,” said Chasen, who led Verizon-acquired mapping startup SocialRadar and drone tech company PrecisionHawk after his time at Blackboard, in a statement. “That’s why we designed Class for Zoom to feel and work like an in-person classroom, and to bring back the happiness of school to teachers and students.”
Through the coronavirus pandemic, Zoom has been growing not only as a professional meeting tool, but as a remote learning platform. ClassEDU gained financial support for Class for Zoom from a portfolio of education investors, including some of Zoom’s own financial backers: Santi Subotovsky, a Zoom board member from Emergence Capital; Jim Scheinman of Maven Partners; and Bill Tai, Zoom’s first committed backer.
Other investments for this seed round came from GSV Ventures, Revolution’s Rise of the Rest Seed Fund, SWaN & Legend Venture Partners and Jessie Woolley-Wilson of DreamBox Learning.
“Revolution’s Rise of the Rest Seed Fund is thrilled to back a D.C.-based company that is tackling one of the nation’s biggest problems today,” said Revolution Chairman and CEO Steve Case. “The widespread adoption of online learning tools is likely to outlast the COVID-19 pandemic, reshaping education both in and out of the classroom. Teachers will continue to rely on tools like Class for Zoom that promise to make remote learning more enriching and vibrant for students.”
In an interview with TechCrunch, Chasen declined to share pricing for the new platform, but interested teachers and educational institutions can schedule a demo of Class for Zoom and join a beta waitlist to test the product in their classrooms via the product’s website.
Here’s the Class for Zoom platform in action:
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