K-12 Dealmaking: ClassWallet Raises $95 Million; SchoolStatus Acquires ClassTag

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Newsela acquires Formative, EdWeek Market Brief

ClassWallet, which makes a purchasing and payments platform for public entities like school districts and government agencies, raised $95 million in its first institutional fundraising round.

The round was led by Boston-based private equity firm Guidepost Growth Equity, along with Connecticut-based private equity firm Education Growth Partners and Lazard Family Office Partners.

ClassWallet is designed to let its end users disburse funds in a way that streamlines traditional processes involving purchasing orders and requisition requests, along with ensuring they’re compliant with purchasing regulations.

The company reports its customers also include scholarship funds, workforce development programs, and emergency assistance government programs.

“There are significant complexities to ensuring public funds reach the right people and are used for the right purpose,” Jamie Rosenberg, ClassWallet founder and CEO, said in a statement. “The reality is compliance is often the root cause of why government programs stagnate. Governors and policy makers fund programs based upon perception of demand yet find themselves months or even years later with unspent funds because of the enormous amount of friction associated with compliance-related bureaucracy. ClassWallet is solving this problem.”

Gene Nogi, general partner at Guidepost, said in a statement that that ClassWallet has “fundamentally transformed the way state agencies and school districts disburse funds,” and that with the tool, state agencies “no longer have to struggle with the cumbersome, manual processes that have plagued public fund distribution.

ClassWallet has “taken a transformative and thoughtful approach to improving efficiency and transparency around fund disbursement in education and driven positive learning outcomes with significant impact for students,” Education Growth Partners Managing General Partner Andy Kaplan said in a statement, adding it was “exactly” what the firm looks for in its ed-tech investments.

SchoolStatus acquires ClassTag. K-12 data and communications company SchoolStatus said it acquired ClassTag, which makes a family communication and engagement platform for school districts.

Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

SchoolStatus said the deal will round out its existing communication suite, as it currently offers two-way texting, calls, print letters, and email to interact with students’ families. SchoolStatus will now also add ClassTag’s mobile app as an additional option for customers, it said.

ClassTag’s app offers a central location for school messages, and sends families messages on their preferred channels, including texting, email, in-app, or paper. It can also automatically translate messages into more than 100 languages.

Engaged families are important to helping students succeed, Russ Davis, SchoolStatus founder and CEO Russ Davis, said in a statement.

“The SchoolStatus platform empowers educators to reach families with the right message, through the right channel, at the right time to have the greatest impact on student outcomes. ClassTag gives us the foundation for a family and teacher experience that centralizes the most relevant data about students for families in a way that is easy for teachers to use,” he said.

Vlada Lotkina, co-founder and CEO of ClassTag, said the product is aimed at helping address issues reaching families as they face “information overload on smartphones, challenges at home, and a lack of visibility into what works,” she said. “ClassTag provides teachers and families with a simple, integrated communications platform to stay connected on what’s happening with students. We’re excited to be teaming up with SchoolStatus to offer innovative solutions that will help set students up for success by supporting meaningful, data-informed school-home communication.”

In-School Mental Health Provider Raises $13 Million. Daybreak Health, a provider of in-school mental health services, raised $13 million in a Series B funding round.

Daybreak has now raised $25 million in funding.

The most recent round was led by Union Square Ventures, and included participation from Lux Capital and existing investors, Lightspeed Venture Partners, Maven Ventures, and Y Combinator.

The funding is aimed at growing Daybreak’s geographic presence and customer base.

Daybreak offers mental health services through remote teletherapy programs, which are run by youth mental health clinicians, to students and matches them with clinicians’ based on their individual needs. Daybreak reports having 60 district customers across the U.S.

“Daybreak is committed to partnering with our nation’s school districts to make mental health support accessible to all kids who need it,” Daybreak Health CEO and co-founder Alex Alvarado said in a statement. “We believe that every child, regardless of their background, should be able to access high-quality, personalized care that’s tailored to their specific needs so they can reach their full potential—in school and at home.”

Daybreak said that four out of five school counselors report noticeable improvements in student’s symptoms after using the services and 92% of families report behavioral improvements at home.

“We not only believe in Daybreak’s mission, but also its long-term vision of serving as an extension of our schools’ mental health infrastructure to make lasting, positive change for this generation,” Rebecca Kaden, managing partner at Union Square Ventures, said in a statement. “The Daybreak team is leading the way in leveraging existing school infrastructure to reach kids through the right channels and at the right moment to maximize impact.”

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