The topic of starting a video study to combat post-pandemic education

Faced with America one a continuing shortage of teachers caused by the pandemic, schools in poorer communities suffer the most. As a result, some have stopped offering classes that are considered “non-essential,” such as art, music, and AP-level courses.

“Your parents’ zip code and socioeconomic status really dictates your high school experience, and it basically dictates the trajectory of your life, ”said Michael Villardo, co-founder and president of the online education startup Subject. “So if we can help level the playing field to ensure more fairness, that’s something that’s really exciting.”


Formerly known as Emil Learning, he was known in Beverly Hills Subject seeks to fill gaps in cash-strapped secondary schools by offering more than 50 accredited video courses in a number of subjects in exchange for a monthly or annual subscription fee. On Tuesday, the startup announced both a name change and a new round of $ 29.4 million Series A financing led by Silicon Valley venture company Owl Ventures. Kleiner Perkins, SoftBank and Moving Capital in Santa Monica also participated in the period, bringing the total amount of the Entity to date to approximately $ 35 million.

There are a number of AP video courses on the theme platform.With respect to the subject

The topic is now approaching 70 partnerships with public schools, school districts, charter and private schools across the country – allowing them to list their courses in everything from core curriculum lessons, such as math and biology, to elective classes. such as computer science and acting.

“That means those students now have access to more than 50 classes, all for credit, in addition to what their school offers in a physical environment.” Villardo said. “It actually gives you more opportunities to take courses that you would never have had the opportunity to take any other way.”

Classes are led by about 150 instructors, including Chief Robinhod Benjamin Melniki (who teaches accreditation classes at the NFT) and former NFL alumnus Brandon Copeland (who leads the financial literacy course). The subject recorded the videos in a Beverly Hills production studio using the installation of three cameras under cinematic caliber lighting; The goal, says Villardo, is to create content that is similar to a Netflix documentary.

Video lessons in each course with information slides and tutorial options.

Video lessons in each course with information slides and tutorial options.With respect to the subject

Villardo has started several startups and had experience in Uber and Nike before co-founding Subject alongside CEO Felix Ruano in 2020. . Not only have they been able to build a viable startup, but Villardo and Ruano are among them. very few Latino founders to raise money for their businesses from major Silicon Valley investors.

The subject is far from the only startup that has invested in a pandemic-era phenomenon called “Zoom University” with its peers. Skillshare has also seen significant growth over the past two years. Invest in edtech startups increased According to CB Insights, that’s $ 4.8 billion in 2019 to $ 12.6 billion in 2020.

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