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Literacy Courseware Challenge
Literacy Courseware Challenge
A $6 million program to support digital literacy curriculum for grades 4-8.
Overview

The Literacy Courseware Challenge, supported by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, awarded $6 million to 29 organizations in the summer of 2013 to build tools to help students in grades 4 through 8 improve their reading and writing skills and--ideally--master the  Common Core State Standards.

Evaluator teams picked the 29 projects from among 150 submissions. The judges looked particularly for: 

  • potential for positive impact on student learning;
  • feasibility of use in school settings;
  • capability of the team to deliver and scale up their plans.

The products are not necessarily free but Gates did require that they offer a "affordable option" for low-income communities.

Here are the awards: 

Systems or platforms for measuring progress:

Organization

Product / Project

Amount

Common Ground

Scholar Literacy Courseware

$500,000

ConnectEDU

Scalable Platform for Literacy Courseware

$500,000

Six Red Marbles

Natural Learning Platform

$500,000

New Visions for Public Schools

The Literacy Platform: Transforming Formative Assessment & Intervention for Writing

$200,000

Qlovi

Qlovi

$200,000


Supplemental & Comprehensive Literary Courseware:

Organization

Product / Project

Amount

iCivics

Drafting Board 2.0

$500,000

Lexia Learning Systems

Lexia Reading Core5/Writing Solution

$500,000

LightSail

LightSail

$500,000

Actively Learn

Actively Learn for reading and writing in Grades 4-8

$270,000

LearnZillion

LearnZillion

$250,000

ThinkCERCA

ThinkCERCA

$250,000

Classroom, Inc.

Reading in the Real World (RRW)

$100,000

Design Innovation Factory

Catalyst Learning

$100,000

Ednovo

Gooru Composition Lab for 5-12th Grade Literacy

$100,000

Lapham's Quarterly

Lapham's Curated Collections

$100,000

Massachusetts Institute of Technology

XENOS Literacy for Grades 6-8

$100,000

Triumph Learning

HelloLift 

$100,000

Whipsmart

Newsela

$100,000

On Deck Systems

PEARLS – Personalized Engaging Adaptive Real-life Learning System for persuasive writing

$99,500


Minimum Viable Product Awards: $25,000 to projects in the concept phase that address a subset of literary skills or academic content for students in grades 4 through 8.

Organization

Product / Project

Amount

Benchmark Education Company

Monthly Research Project Organizers

$25,000

Clemson University

UpWrite: Courseware for the Process Writing Approach

$24,839

Quill

Empirical Grammar

$25,000

Filament Games

The FourWord Argumentation Suite

$25,000

GameDesk

CollaboWrite

$25,000

LightSIDE Labs

LightSIDE Revision Assistant

$25,000

Liquid Interactive

Writelike

$25,000

Quackenworth

Writetify

$25,000

University of Georgia Research Foundation

Persuade Me

$25,000

WestEd

The Missing Agents

$25,000



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