PIKMYKID, a Florida-based company, has raised $1 million in funding backed by Florida Funders and The Fan Fund. PikMyKid offers a mobile and web platform for parents and schools to coordinate picking up their children. School administrators use it to manage queues and notify parents when the child has been picked up, who picked him or her up and what transportation was used.
According to the company, some 50 schools in 14 states use the tool, and 80 percent of parents and caregivers at those schools are using it for pick-ups. The mobile application has seen some 60,000 downloads.
CENGAGE, the Boston-based publisher has acquired WebAssign, which offers online instructional and assessment tools for higher-ed students. Terms of the deal were not disclosed. Founded in 1998, WebAssign has worked with academic publishers—including Cengage—to embed questions, quizzes, videos and other digital resources into content, serving more than 1.5 million students each year. More details in the press release.
SAVING STUDENT PRIVACY: Since far in 2016, 34 states have introduced 112 student data privacy bills. Of these, 14 states have passed 16 bills as laws. These numbers come from the Data Quality Campaign (DQC), a nonprofit that monitors how student data is used. Its latest report (PDF) offers a bird’s-eye view of major questions and strategies on how to safeguard student privacy as more technology tools are adopted by schools.
The report buckets two approaches to protect privacy: a “prohibitive” approach that outright prevents service providers from collecting a certain type of data; and a “governance” strategy that calls for specific procedures or roles (such as a “chief privacy officer”) to ensure that data is handled properly. DQC calls attention to Colorado’s “far-reaching” Student Data Transparency and Security Act, passed in June 2016, that “may become a model for other states.”
KAHOOT! The Norwegian developer of a free educational gaming tool has raised $10 million in a Series A round led by Frederik Casel (partner at Creandum Ventures), with Northzone and Microsoft Ventures also participating. Kahoot!, launched in 2013, allows teachers to gamify classroom quizzes and turn group activities into a game show. The startup boasts 33 million monthly active unique users, and will use the funding to add new game formats and build new apps that brands and publishers can use (and presumably pay for). More details from Kahoot’s blog.