DreamBox Learning and The Rise Fund Join Forces to Drive Impact and Growth
Together, we will change the way the world learns
When I joined DreamBox Learning in 2010 as Chief Executive Officer, I knew I had arrived somewhere special.
In the beginning, there were only about twelve employees, and they were some of the most passionate, dedicated, and talented individuals I had ever met. Together, they’d pioneered a new kind of learning experience that used an adaptive engine to provide personalized, engaging, and effective learning to elementary school students. Our goal was simple: if we could leverage this new class of responsive, dynamic, and scalable technology to meet every child where they were in their learning pathways, we could democratize learning. The vision was to provide every child with an innovative and transformative learning experience—regardless of where they lived or where they were from. Above all else, these pioneers wanted students to be surprised, delighted, and engaged in math, welcoming the productive struggle that comes from making “mistakes” and deepening their understanding with every click of the mouse. These bold innovators decided to bring their hearts and talents to this seemingly impossible mission: to unlock the learning potential of every child. And, that is exactly what they did. The result? DreamBox Learning® Math.
Early on, DreamBox Learning® Math captured the imaginations of children, the respect of teachers, and the trust of parents. In addition, this new intelligent adaptive learning program was not only fun and engaging for students, but it was also a rigorous curriculum that worked! We had begun to prove that what we did demonstrably helped kids learn—and this commitment to efficacy remains the cornerstone for what our math solution is today. While other companies might adapt pace and place, DreamBox adapts the pedagogy—both within and between lessons—dynamically, instantaneously, and continuously. No lesson is too hard or too easy for the learner. Each child gets what they need exactly when they need it.
Over the years, as more students used the software and student engagement grew, we heard from teachers who loved DreamBox and demanded more. We soon realized that in order to impact student achievement at the scale we wanted, we needed to better understand the needs of educators at the classroom, school, and district levels. Our product soon evolved to include a focus on the educator experience: giving teachers actionable insights and relevant data to better differentiate their instruction and support student success. MyFlexPD is a groundbreaking new model that leverages real-time data about students to provide on-demand, job-embedded professional development to support teachers. And most recently, we added predictive analytics capabilities to provide administrators with a view into how their schools and districts will perform by the end of the year.
And at the heart of it all—both then and now—has been our mission to radically transform the way the world learns.
I’m thrilled to announce that today, DreamBox Learning and The Rise Fund, a global impact fund managed by TPG Growth, have decided to join forces to serve more students and educators, and to reshape the future of learning by using technology to unlock human capacity by first unlocking learning potential. Our organizations both believe that society is well served by educating our children so that they grow up to be productive citizens, capable professionals, and life-long learners. I’d say our democracy depends upon the success of our children.
With a $130 million investment from The Rise Fund, DreamBox will be able to fuel more learning innovations, evolve our product and services offerings, and expand our reach on the global stage. DreamBox will also use the investment to explore strategic partnerships that will propel the company forward in its mission to reveal the brilliance we know every child possesses.
DreamBox and The Rise Fund share a joint commitment to both social impact and growth. Together we will help the company grow faster, spur more innovation, and most importantly, continue to support great teaching and learning in the years to come. At DreamBox, we like to say #MKOD (More Kids on DreamBox); it’s what drives us and restores us when we face challenges. With nearly three million students,120,000 teachers served, and 165 employees, we know we’re just getting started.
Onward and upward!
Jessie joined DreamBox Learning® in 2010 as Chair, President, and CEO. The startup software company had pioneered Intelligent Adaptive Learning™ in 2006 and began partnering with schools soon after Jessie joined. Today, DreamBox serves nearly 3 million K-8 students and approximately 120,000 teachers. The company provided more than 350 million math lessons across the U.S. and Canada in 2017.
Jessie recently secured a $130 million investment in DreamBox from The Rise Fund, a global impact investing fund managed by TPG Growth. Prior to joining DreamBox, Jessie served as president of Blackboard’s K-12 Group and LeapFrog SchoolHouse, the K-12 division of LeapFrog Enterprises. Jessie also served in leadership positions at collegeboard.com, the interactive division of The College Board, and at Kaplan, the leading test preparation company in the U.S.
Jessie supports the broader K12 industry by serving on the boards of several educational organizations including Rosetta Stone, Newsela, the Western Governors University Board of Trustees, and Ursuline Academy. She is also a board member for Boeing Employees Credit Union, Pacific Science Center, and The Bullitt Foundation. She has been a featured speaker at international events including TEDx Rainier, SXSWedu, DENT and GeekWire Summit 2018.
Jessie is a two-time recipient of EdTech Digest’s EdTech Leadership Award for her work in transformative innovation in education and honored her as one of 2018’s Top 100 Influencers in EdTech. Seattle Business Magazine awarded Jessie the 2015 Executive Excellence Award in the CEO of the Year category and Forbes placed her on its “Impact 15” list for being a disruptor in education. The Puget Sound Business Journal honored Jessie as a “Woman of Influence” and 425 Magazine named her as one of eight “Unstoppable Eastside Women” for having a clear focus on the greater good. Additionally, The New York Times has profiled Jessie and her leadership style in their Corner Office column.
Jessie holds an MBA from Harvard Business School and a BA from the University of Virginia. She is also a 2007 Henry Crown Fellow and moderator for the Aspen Institute.