09 Jun, 2022, 12:00 ET
Wonderschool Co-Founder and CEO Chris Bennett Recognized with 2022 EdTech Breakthrough Award
SAN FRANCISCO, June 9, 2022 /PRNewswire/ -- Innovative childcare platform Wonderschool today announced Chris Bennett, its co-founder and CEO, has been recognized as "EdTech CEO of the Year" by EdTech Breakthrough, a leading market intelligence organization recognizing the top companies and solutions in the global educational technology market.
The EdTech Breakthrough Awards honor excellence and recognize innovation, hard work, and success in a range of educational technology categories. This year's program attracted more than 2,250 nominations from over 18 different countries throughout the world.
"We know a meaningful early childhood experience can change the trajectory of a child's, and their family's life; I've experienced it firsthand," Bennett said. "Today, 51 percent of Americans live in areas without sufficient access to licensed childcare options. We built Wonderschool in response to this endemic challenge. I'm honored to be recognized by EdTech Breakthrough for what we have built. We are just getting started, and will continue to work tirelessly to serve state leaders, educators, and families."
A product of home-based childcare himself, Bennett founded Wonderschool on the idea that, rather than investing trillions in new buildings and schools, we could unlock the collective potential of caring people already in our communities and connect existing home-based options to families to tackle the national childcare crisis together.
Launched in 2016, the Wonderschool platform, which has been deployed statewide in states like New Mexico and Nevada, provides childcare entrepreneurs with the tools and infrastructure needed to establish, support, and sustain their programs. Using the platform, providers can access help with operations, licensing, accounting, and marketing to attract enrollment, as well as expert and peer support to generate curriculum ideas and work through any challenges they may encounter. States are increasingly relying upon the Wonderschool platform for insight into childcare gaps across their state, helping to inform policy and funding decisions to generate the critical insights necessary to make smarter, more targeted investments in childcare deserts.
Wonderschool now serves thousands of childcare programs. Wonderschool directors with full enrollment earn an average of $78,000—more than twice the median salary of a preschool teacher salary in the U.S., according to data from U.S. News and World Report.
Recognized by TIME and Fast Company as one of the top innovative companies, Wonderschool has been funded by Goldman Sachs's One Million Black Women initiative, Andreessen Horowitz, First Round Capital, Imaginable Futures, Cross Culture Ventures, Uncork Capital, Rethink Education, Edelweiss, Lerer Ventures, 500 Startups, FundersClub, and others.
"Chris has inspired a movement in our communities that supports and encourages more people to start childcare programs at home," says Mia Pritts, Vice President of Strategic Partnerships at Wonderschool. "As a result of his innovative leadership, more families are able to find affordable, convenient, and reliable care for their children, and providers, many of whom are women, are empowered to not only sustain but to grow their small businesses."
Wonderschool is building the largest network of high-quality early education programs. Wonderschool offers a diversity of options and combines engaged teachers and thoughtful education with the warmth of a family program while maintaining standards that go above and beyond state requirements. By providing dedicated support, technology, training, mentorship, and community, Wonderschool lets teachers focus on what they do best— teaching—and allows them to earn a sustainable living in the field they love. Named one of Fast Company's Most Innovative Companies in Education in 2019, Wonderschool is based in San Francisco and venture-backed by Goldman Sachs, Andreessen Horowitz, First Round, Omidyar, Unusual Ventures, and Gary Community Investments, among others. Learn more at www.wonderschool.com.
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