K-12 Dealmaking: Schola Raises $10M Series A; SEL Provider Acquires BASE Education

Staff Writer
K-12 Dealmaking, EdWeek Market Brief

Schola, an online platform to helps families find PreK-12 school and enroll students in them, raised a $10 million Series A funding round, the company announced.

The round was led by San Diego-based investment firm Channel Equity Partners and included a significant investment from Arizona Venture Development Corp., Revolution’s Rise of the Rest, EduLab, Stout Street, and Portfolia.

The funding will be used to help the Phoenix-based company hire additional employees and add capabilities to its school choice online marketplace.

“We’re very excited about the additional resources from this investment that will allow Schola to execute further our vision for families and schools across America,” Jaime Martinez, founder and CEO of Schola, said in a statement.

Channel Equity Partners’ Jensen Bryant said in a statement that it was attracted to investing in Schola as the PreK-12 student recruiting market is still in the midst of a transition from offline to online channels.

“The data showed that Schola’s school partners receive a potential 15x return on investment from the value of enrollment applications generated by its marketplace,” Bryant said. “CEP is thrilled to support this amazing team that has developed the most efficient solution for schools and families to succeed.”

Social-emotional learning company acquires BASE Education. Social-emotional learning curriculum provider 7 Mindsets has acquired BASE Education, an SEL and mental health platform, the company announced.

Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Based in Roswell, Ga., 7 Mindsets focuses on what it describes as mindsets-based SEL programs and offers a PreK-12 curriculum along with professional developing and coaching to school districts.

By acquiring BASE, 7 Mindsets said it will be able to expand its own current suite of SEL offerings and be able to provide districts with a multi-tiered system of supports.

“With the addition of BASE Education, 7 Mindsets becomes the most comprehensive SEL provider well-equipped to serve the social, emotional, and mental health needs of all members of the school community,” 7 Mindsets CEO Mark Belles said in a statement.

Joining 7 Mindsets, in turn, will give BASE the ability to scale its products quickly and further its efforts to help students build skills for mental health and resilience, said CEO Robin Glenn.

“Becoming part of 7 Mindsets allows BASE to expand our clinical and innovative approach to mental health for all kids. Being able to diversify our offering is imperative for equitable student access and connection,” Glenn said in a statement.

95 Percent Group Makes First Acquisition. Literacy curriculum and professional development provider the 95 Percent Group acquired Hill Reading Achievement Program from non-profit Hill Learning Center, the organizations said.

Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

In 2021, education-focused private equity firm Leeds Equity Partners made a significant investment in 95 Percent Group to help it develop its curriculum and invest in new digital solutions. The acquisition of the Reaching Achievement Program, a tech-based program that offers structured literacy intervention for students struggling to learn to read, is 95 Percent Group’s first.

By acquiring the product, 95 Percent Group said it would be able to offer the districts it works with a proven digital solution and helps it works towards its goal of being able to offer schools a comprehensive phonics ecosystem.

Currently, 95 Percent Group offers teacher-centric resources and professional development for Tiers 1 and 2 literacy instruction, grounded in the science of reading. The Reading Achievement Program is a Tier 3 intervention program that provides explicit, mastery-based instruction in phonological awareness, phonics, fluency, vocabulary, and comprehension.

“This begins an exciting chapter for 95 Percent Group. We are entering a new market and opening up greater opportunities to serve more schools and students who need us,” CEO Brad Lindaas said in a statement, adding that “95 Percent Group will invest in the ongoing development and innovation of HillRAP, expanding its capabilities to improve the literacy skills and lives of more students.”

Leeds Equity Partners said it will continue to expand 95 Percent Group’s product offerings in the early education reading and instruction area, including through additional acquisitions.

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