K-12 Market Highlights: AI, Acquisitions & Personnel Moves

Business teams working together

A year that started with excitement and trepidation around the launch of ChatGPT and the impact of AI on education, 2023 ended with a U.S. education company acquiring an Irish AI company and AI education start-ups getting seed funding. And, as always, the final quarter of the year included many other acquisitions and personnel moves. Check out our K-12 market highlights!

Here are the K-12 market highlights from another exciting year in the education market:

  • Frontline Education announced Chris Tonas has joined the company’s executive team as Chief Technology Officer.
  • Curriculum Associates acquired SoapBox Labs, the Irish company that makes AI-powered voice technology for children.
  • HeyTutor announced the promotion of Jennifer Sheffield to Chief Executive Officer. Sheffield previously served as Chief Administrative Officer.
  • Imagine Learning appointed John Orsanic as Chief Financial Officer.
  • ParentSquare acquired Remind, a platform for communication and learning.
  • PowerSchool announced the appointment of Stewart Monk as Senior Vice President and General Manager, International.
  • Paper, the remote tutoring company, named Monica Goldson to its board of directors.
  • Acceleration Academies announced Kelli Campbell will assume the role of Chief Executive Officer.
  • Capstone named Haygood Poundstone as Chief Revenue Officer.
  • Byju’s is in talks to sell Epic, its digital reading platform based in the United States, for $400 million.
  • Concentric Educational Solutions announced new members to its leadership team including Karlo Young as Chief Operating Officer, Alvin Crawford as Chief Revenue Officer, and Max Altmark as Chief Financial Officer. The company also raised $5 million in Series A funding from New Markets Venture Partners to address chronic absenteeism.
  • Instructure agreed to acquire Parchment, a digital credential company, for $835 million. The company also named Melissa Loble Chief Academic Officer.
  • Kristi Knight joined Reading Horizons as Chief Marketing Officer.
  • SchoolStatus named Tim Mathison Chief Financial Officer.
  • Jessie Woolley-Wilson, president and CEO of DreamBox Learning, is stepping away from day-to-day duties at the company following the completion of its acquisition to Discovery Education.
  • Global independent marketing and communications firm FINN Partners acquired C. Blohm & Associates Inc. (CB&A), a content marketing agency, with special expertise in B2B education and education technology. The firm will be known as CB&A, A FINN Partners Company, and work alongside FINN’s existing pre-K–12 and higher-ed practices.
  • STEM-curriculum company, Accelerate Learning, acquired Kide Science, a STEM platform for preschool through third grade.
  • Class Companion, an AI platform that provides feedback to students, raised $4 million in seed funding.
  • Shaquille O’Neal led ed-tech start-up Edsoma’s $2.5 million seed round.
  • eDynamic Learning acquired Thinking Media, the parent company behind Learning Blade and Ready for Industry.
  • Babbel acquired browser extension Toucan.
  • FullBloom, a company that provides special education instruction and interventions, acquired counseling support company EmpowerU.
  • Ello, an AI literacy start-up, raised $15 million in Series A funding.
  • Converge appointed James Sanders as Chief Executive Officer.
  • MIND Education named Jason Mendenhall as Chief Product Officer.

As the year draws to an end, there’s one thing we know for sure: The U.S. education market is vital, innovative, and evolving. Who knows what 2024 will bring?

Happy New Year!

Lisa Wolfe is the president of L. Wolfe Communications. Founded in April 2000, L. Wolfe Communications offers its clients a network of senior, experienced public relations executives with a variety of complementary experience and expertise in public relations and communications for the education and library markets.