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The March 8 event provided six finalists a chance to pitch educational business ideas and products to judges in hopes of winning a cash stipend and consulting services from the LAUNCHedu advisory board members and supporting sponsors.
“The LAUNCHedu competition highlighted a wealth of exceptional ideas and products that have the power to transform education as we know it today,” said Ron Reed, pxecutive producer of SXSWedu. “The field of contestants was extremely strong, and we congratulate BloomBoard and LearningJar for pushing the boundaries of creativity and innovation in education.”
Bloomboard, the K-12 winner, is based in Palo Alto, Calif., and "provides free observation and evaluation tools for school districts, and then uses the data collected from those tools to build individualized learning plans for teachers." Additionally, the company provides an open marketplace of workshops and resources.
LearningJar, the higher education champion, is based in San Francisco and has developed an online life tool that "allows learners to gather and organize information about what they are learning, to validate their progress, and to share their success."
Venture capital firm LearnCapital sponsored the competition, while supporting sponsors included EdNET 2012; the McCombs School of Business, The University of Texas; myEdu; Top Hat Monocle and Trinity Education Group.