KPCB Partner Ted Schlein was interviewed by Gerard Baker on “Investing in the Next Big Thing” panel at The Wall Street Journal CIO Network Annual Meeting in San Diego.
SAN FRANCISCO, CA – February 4, 2014 – Remind101, a free communication platform built for teachers, today announced that it has raised $15 million in Series B financing led by Kleiner Perkins Caulfield & Byers (www.kpcb.com). KPCB general partner John Doerr has also joined its board. This round includes additional participation from previous investors including Remind101 board member Chamath Palihapitiya’s firm, The Social + Capital Partnership and First Round Capital.
The Series B round enables Remind101 to harness the rapid adoption of its core product while accelerating its product development plans with value-added services that make it possible for schools and parents to simplify daily tasks such as signing paperwork and permission slips, polling families for feedback and facilitating payments and other transactions. Today’s news also helps support Remind101’s commitment to keeping its messaging service free for teachers.
Every 26 seconds a student in the United States drops out of school. Studies show communicating with students outside of school increases homework turn in rates and classroom participation by up to 50 percent and that parent involvement is also a crucial element to student’s success. Remind101 addresses both of these factors through its messaging service. Through a simple interface, teachers are using Remind101 to quickly send group messages that reach both students and parents to communicate classroom information or share words of encouragement; students are more informed, parents are more involved.
“We’ve all got a lot at stake in the education of today’s kids,” said KPCB general partner, John Doerr. “Remind101’s platform is a simple, powerful, free solution for communication between students, teachers and parents. We are energized by the team’s commitment to empower educators for student success.”
Remind101 addresses a persistent and frustrating problem faced by teachers every day: finding the most effective channels to help students achieve their full potential. Remind101’s platform enables them to update students and parents with timely information like homework reminders and upcoming parent-teacher conferences and will soon streamline payments and polling. The reality today is that teachers are overextended and can’t always give the individual attention they would like. Since 91 percent of adults and 78 percent of teens (aged 12-17) have a mobile phone, text messaging is the quickest and most efficient way to reach students/parents.
“Remind101 aims to connect every student, teacher and parent in the world and become the ubiquitous platform to empower educators to tap into the potential of each student,” says Brett Kopf, CEO and co-founder of Remind101. “With just a few clicks, and without requiring management of an additional inbox, our technology makes it possible for teachers to motivate, clarify and remind students and parents about critical information. Remind101 extends the classroom by providing busy teachers with an added layer of communication, giving them the assurance they are setting their students up for success.”
“Keeping parents up to date on class activities and schedules has transformed my classroom,” says Jessica Deon, 5th Grade teacher at Rosepine Elementary School in Rosepine, Louisiana. “Last fall when Louisiana released our VAM scores, I scored in the 97th percentile and I credit much of that score to Remind101.This is the third school year that I have used Remind101 and I am still getting messages from students and parents from my first year singing Remind101’s praises.”
Remind101 is already in use with over 10 million teachers, parents and students, with over 65 million messages sent per month. The company is funded by a notable group of investors whose previous investments include Google, Facebook, Twitter, Yammer and Zynga.
How Remind101 works
Remind101 provides a free, safe messaging service for teachers to communicate with students and parents via text or email. Teachers sign up for an account, create classes or groups, gather subscribers, and start messaging. All without ever sharing their personal cell phone number, or collecting phone numbers from their students or parents. Some of the core benefits of using Remind101 include:
Safety – teachers never see students’ phone numbers and vice versa, preserving privacy and ensuring safety;
Accessibility – students and parents use mobile phones or emails to receive messages from their teachers, without the need for a smartphone;
One-to-many – messages go to the entire class, and students and parents can’t reply, saving teachers from having to manage another inbox;
Audit trail – a log of all sent messages is kept if needed for any administration or audit needs.
To sign up for the free communication service or for more information, visit www.Remind101.com.