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AllHere’s $8M Series A: An Opportunity to Build Public Education Back Better

Joanna Smith June 9, 2021

Today, I am honored to announce that AllHere has raised a $8M Series A round led by Spero Ventures, in support of a deep reimagining – not just tinkering – of K-12 education that uses the potential of AI-powered chatbots to meet every student and family where they’re at with support and guidance from enrollment all the way through to graduation.

I can’t help but recall the first day AllHere launched in Boston Public Schools to train teachers and staff about how to track interventions. Our ideology was that if you couldn’t track the data to ensure that students were supported, in an evidence-based manner, then even the most rigorously proven interventions would not get to the projected result.

We’ve since seen a pandemic, a rapid increase in the number of students who are struggling to attend school on a regular basis, and a massive shift in the mindset of educators about the role of technology and data-driven strategies to create more equitable learning outcomes.

We listened to our school partners, and as a result, pioneered K-12’s first evidence-based, AI-powered advisor – a behaviorally intelligent chatbot that provides educational guidance on a 24/7 basis that now serves over 8,000 schools and 2 million students and families across the U.S.

Heading into the fall, the consensus is clear: families and district leaders want a return to in-person learning. But that does not mean a return to normal. “Normal” wasn’t working for historically marginalized students who have suffered from unequal access to high-quality guidance and mentorship. It wasn’t working for stressed out parents whose lack of access to a stable address or internet set their children up for failure in remote learning.

The same kids who were underserved for years now face unprecedented academic, mental health, and social-emotional needs that will impact their ability to attend school. Schools will be hard-pressed to meet those needs if they pursue business as usual, and we have an opportunity to do things differently.

As a black CEO and founder, I want other black and brown entrepreneurs to know that you are needed. The world needs us to not only be technology users but the creators of the technology and solutions that lead to a more equitable society. Keep building!

Thank you to everyone who has supported our journey to build public education back better.

Thank you to my incredible team at AllHere, the superintendents, directors of student support and well-being that make our work possible, and our customers that have built right alongside us.

Thank you to the myriad of people who have mentored me and continue to teach me to take AllHere further, faster, including my first institutional investors Matt Greenfield and Ebony Brown, new partners Andrew Parker, Stephen Wemple, Shipriya Mahesh, and mentors/advisors Matt Guidarelli, Jeff Livingston, Peter Bergman, Leyla Seka, Mallun Yen, Bill Beecher, Toby Brzoznowski, Hedy Chang, Cecelia Leong, The Visible Figures Community, and the hundreds of people who have extended grace, mentorship, encouragement, and partnership.

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