"Your new digital teacher's aide"...
and the Winner of Gap App Challenge!
KnowRe is humbly describes itself as an 'educational technology company' that develops innovative online adaptive service for mathematics, but I disagree - there is so much more to it than what meets the eye. They were listed by TechCrunch, GigaOm, TechwireAsia, The Next Web and VentureBeat (just to name a few!) as one of the hottest Korean startups to watch out for, the Winner of Plug and Play Tech Center prize at beLAUNCH2012, and the Grand Prize Winner at the biggest startup competition in Korea, Global K-Startup 2012 (sponsored by Google, KISA, and KCC) and was sponsored to go to Silicon Valley and London just last October to work with VCs, angel investors, and startups. They also received a hefty cheque of KRW 100 million - around USD$100,000 in prize money.
Now, these are just a couple of things that the KnowRe team accomplished, out of many. Recently, the KnowRe team had something more to celebrate about! They were selected as:
"the Winner of “Best Instruction App” at Gap App Challenge".
Gap App Challenge was aimed to close achievement gaps in middle school math in New York, and KnowRe came First Place out of 200 apps that applied, and the KnowRe app will be piloted across New York City schools starting this fall in iZone schools, backed up by the NY Department of Education. What an incredible achievement! KnowRe never ceases to surprise the beSUCCESS team and the wider Korean startup community.
Schools Chancellor Dennis M. Walcott announced and congratulated KnowRe at the Tweed Courthouse and was joined by Anthony Meyer from the Anthony Meyer Family Foundation, which contributed the cash prize to the company. KnowRe, with other startups, will receive a total of around $100,000 in prizes from the Anthony Meyer Family Foundation and Amazon Web Services - around $50,000 in cash and $54,000 in AWS credits).
I must mention: not only did KnowRe come First out of many promising startups and apps (that means intense competition folks), but also KnowRe was met with three panels of judges including public school principals, teachers, Department of Education officials who reviewed KnowRe's submission.
There was an array of criteria - and after strict reviews, the judges all decided that the Korean company hit every single one. This means that KnowRe was considered best fit for local teachers and was tailored to the needs of their students.
According to Dan Maccarone, CEO was "simple [and] solved specific problems" (Dan Maccarone, CEO of Charming Robot). The New York City Schools Chancellor Dennis Wolcott also stated that “If we can find better ways to engage them [around learning using KnowRe], that’s to the benefit of the entire community.”
You can check out KnowRe's video here, but just to let you know what they do: KnowRe is an educational technology company developing an innovative online adaptive learning service for mathematics by using test questions to assess an individual’s strengths and weaknesses. Then they formulate a personalized curriculum review suited for each student’s proposed focus areas, and engages students through game-like features, attractive graphics and social learning.
Maccarone said that KnowRe resembled Civilization and other popular video games. “If you’re going to go game-y with your app, it has to be up to the standards of things kids like and use,” he observed. KnowRe makes mathematics look so easy and appealing, but all the data crunching takes place behind the scenes. That's what's so amazing about KnowRe - there's more to it than what meets the eye.
The KnowRe team has a strong belief in the importance of a "good education, the need for personalization in our educational system" and understands that technology is the most effective tool to help bring about these goals. I will be interviewing Seojoon Kim, the Co-Founder and Vice President at KnowRe tomorrow to find out more, so watch this space!