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Giving Compass' Take:
• Mohannad Arbaji created ChalkTalk, an education technology tool designed to help students learn math and English concepts. However, he discovered students were not completing the lessons on the platform, and now has to do a complete overhaul.
• What are the primary funding challenges when re-scaling education products?
• Read more about the role of education in technology.
A couple of years ago, Mohannad Arbaji had a problem, one he could only solve by going back to school. Not enough students were completing lessons on his digital platform ChalkTalk, aimed at helping students grades 9-12 understand English and math concepts and improve their scores on tests like the ACT and SAT.
So the CEO of the Boston-based company sat in on classrooms in over 12 schools. Arbaji realized that the original design of ChalkTalk needed an overhaul. Students weren’t completing lessons on their own outside of school. He needed the educators to incorporate his platform as part of their class.
Scaling an education technology company has been an ongoing lesson for Arbaji. Now, two years later, he tells EdSurge he’s pursuing a Series A fundraise to expand the company’s footprint beyond over 50 schools that the platform, and grow its team from 17 full-time employees to about 50.
ChalkTalk launched in 2016, graduating from Boston’s LearnLaunch accelerator, a program that mentors and invests in early-stage education companies. The company had raised $3 million in seed funding. At that time, the company served students at private international high schools, focusing on the Middle East and North Africa markets.
But the language and cultural barriers that came with scaling the business in multiple countries led him to redirect his focus to the U.S.—for now. That’s where he learned that students were struggling to complete the lessons on their own, and why he had to redesign the platform to make it more accessible for teachers to use in the classroom.
Now, after two years of testing, Arbaji believes he’s finally arrived at the right tool, one that he hopes will attract more school customers—and investors.
Read the full article about ChalkTalk by Wade Tyler Millward at EdSurge