April 8, 2019

Renaissance has acquired Early Learning Labs to offer curriculum-based measurement tools and expand early learning assessments

WISCONSIN RAPIDS, Wis. (Apr. 8, 2019)Renaissance®, a global leader in pre-K–12 education technology, today announced that it has acquired Early Learning Labs. The acquisition comes in response to customer requests for a curriculum-based measurement (CBM) option and increased tools to support younger students.

Early Learning Labs, developed out of the University of Minnesota (UMN), offers progress monitoring, assessments, and reporting tools to track early literacy, early numeracy, early social-emotional learning, and more through its myIGDIs platform, which is immediately available for Renaissance users for use in pre-K.

“Early Learning Labs couldn’t be more thrilled to join Renaissance,” said Early Learning Labs Founder and Senior Advisor Scott McConnell, PhD, who is also a professor of educational psychology in the UMN College of Education and Human Development and one of the founding directors of IGDILab. “Renaissance is a leader in K–12 assessment and is in an ideal position to expand the myIGDIs experience for current users, as well as grow Early Learning Labs’ offerings in the coming months and years, helping countless students discover the joy of learning along the way by helping teachers and schools serve them.”

With this move, Renaissance further expands into the early learning space—reaching children as young as age 3—and enters the curriculum-based measurement (CBM) market. Using brief, week-to-week assessments, CBM provides insights into students’ progress and suggests avenues for differentiating instruction, making it a powerful supplement to Renaissance’s existing assessment and monitoring options.

“Just like the educators we serve, Renaissance is always looking for opportunities to further support and accelerate student learning. The acquisition of the myIGDIs platform and the exemplary research behind it will help us further that mission, particularly in the early learning space,” said Renaissance CEO Chris Bauleke. “Renaissance has a long-standing commitment of using high-quality research and real-world data to produce best-in-class solutions, so educators in turn can easily get the data they need to strengthen learning, and IGDIs is a perfect fit.”

The Individual Growth and Development Indicators (IGDIs) assessments are the product of more than twenty years of federally funded research at UMN, a nationwide leader in early childhood research. Empirical evaluations have shown IGDIs to be valid, reliable predictors of language, early literacy, and school readiness for later academic success. Today myIGDIs are among the most-used assessments for three- and four-year-olds, trusted by more than 12,500 schools across the country to monitor and support the growth of over 300,000 students.

“We’re excited to give our educators an additional opportunity to really find out what their students know, so they can use actionable data to accelerate student learning,” said Todd Brekhus, chief product officer at Renaissance. “Renaissance is making a significant investment to expand our portfolio to include CBM. When our customers speak, we listen, and if it makes sense to respond to those requests with further acquisitions to improve services and products, we’re eager and well-positioned to do so.”

About Renaissance

Renaissance® is a global leader in pre-K–12 educational technology, enabling teachers, curriculum creators, and educators to drive phenomenal student growth. Renaissance’s solutions help educators analyze, customize, and plan personalized learning paths for students, allowing time for what matters: creating energizing learning experiences in the classroom. Founded by parents, upheld by educators, and enriched by data scientists, Renaissance knows learning is a continual journey—from year to year and for a lifetime. Our data-driven, personalized solutions are currently used in over one-third of U.S. schools and more than 80 countries around the world. For more information, visit www.renaissance.com.

About Early Learning Labs

Early Learning Labs represents the product of two decades of research conducted by educators, researchers, and practitioners at the University of Minnesota. With the goal of doing high-quality research that leads to effective and “do-able” practice, our team offers early childhood educators and care-providers with evidence-based solutions for their classrooms. Early Learning Labs’ early childhood assessment program, myIGDIs, helps early childhood educators identify children at risk of poor learning outcomes early and monitor development goals often. For more information, visit www.myIGDIs.com.

About University of Minnesota

The University of Minnesota is a leading public research university, with nearly one billion dollars in research each year, and home to the College of Education and Human Development, which is regularly ranked among the world’s top ten education colleges. UMN Technology Commercialization has helped spin out 145 UMN startups since 2006, with more than three-quarters still active. Early Learning Labs is the fifth UMN startup to be acquired or go public in the past two years.

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Ken Stoflet
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