Press Releases

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE via Weld North March 9, 2016 WELD NORTH ACQUIRES PERFORMANCE MATTERS; MERGES COMPANY WITH TRUENORTHLOGIC Combination Creates Industry’s First SaaS Platform That Integrates Professional Growth and Student Assessment Tools with Powerful Educational Analytics Capabilities Enables School Districts to Meaningfully Evaluate the Impact of Professional Development and Educator Effectiveness on Student Learning NEW YORK –  Weld North Holdings LLC, a leading education investment company led by former Kaplan CEO Jonathan Grayer, announced today their continued expansion in the big data and educational analytics technology market with the acquisition of Performance Matters, a leader in student assessment systems and analytics. As part of this transaction, Performance Matters will merge with Truenorthlogic, the leader in educator professional growth solutions acquired by Weld North in April, 2014. The combination creates the first company with educator evaluation and professional development data; student achievement data; and powerful analytics capability to better understand the drivers of student outcomes. The terms of the agreement were not disclosed. “The recent passage of the Every Student Succeeds Act makes it imperative that state and local educational leaders understand what is working and what is not. In that effort, we believe that Districts will increasingly use the analysis of all kinds of data to improve student outcomes,” said Jonathan Grayer, Chairman and CEO of Weld North. “We understand this goal and know how to unlock the value of big data and critical analysis in an increasingly digital education landscape. With this merger, for the first time ever,...

One of the most significant challenges and opportunities we face is how to best to prepare our students for a rapidly changing technology driven, globalized world. To do so, we need to broaden our view of student achievement to include greater emphasis on the higher order skills necessary for developing global citizens who are ready for the world beyond school. The Common Core State Standards (CCSS) with the focus on career and college readiness, address this need for increased rigor by significantly raising expectations for students....

At the start of the school year the media usually raises the issue about the increasing number of students who are failing to learn to read. The interesting thing is, there is no evidence that standards of achievement in reading are declining. In fact, the evidence shows that there has been a steady increase in fourth grade reading levels since 1988, but “the current difficulties in reading largely originate from rising demands for literacy, not from declining levels of literacy.” (National Research Council 1998) This has huge implications for us in our teaching. We need to think carefully about how we are going to equip our students with the strategies to deal with the rapidly changing world of print. Our students will need to have strategies to deal with the: Volume of print and the need to be able to read selectively to negotiate this Range and complexity of print, including electronic sources, and the need to be able to read in many ways Availability of information from a wide range of sources and the need to be critical readers Focusing on questioning as a comprehension strategy is one way we can help our students become critical and strategic readers. Questions and making sense of the world. From a very young age, children actively strive to make sense of their world through constant questioning. The ability to ask questions comes naturally for young children, such as these questions from a group of five-year-olds watching a fly: “How do flies...

The most powerful way to raise student achievement is through professional learning. Research shows that effective collaborative professional learning for teachers is what distinguishes high performing schools from lower performing schools. That’s the belief underlying a new partnership that is designed to ensure students graduate from high school with the literacy skills necessary to succeed in college and their careers....

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE October 14, 2014 Registration Open for Unique Leadership Program for California Educators Generation Ready partners with one of the nation's leading education experts for professional development program in Long Beach NEW YORK, NY – The biggest challenge for school and district leaders across the country right now revolves around raising student achievement while simultaneously implementing a large number of initiatives ranging from Common Core State Standards to Local Control Accountability Plans (LCAP). This November, Generation Ready, one of the largest providers of professional development and school improvement services in the country, will offer an intense, three-day Leading Learning Institute in Long Beach with a rare opportunity for school leaders to learn from one of the biggest thought leaders in education today. Designed for district and school teams, Dr. Richard Elmore, Gregory R. Anrig Professor of Educational Leadership, Administration, Planning and Social Policy, Harvard Graduate School of Education, will combine theory, real data from participating schools and collaboration to help school leaders leave with a clear focus. Participants will be asked to develop a bold vision for instruction and identify the learning that would be required to make this vision a reality. “One of the real challenges is getting that vision of what real effective practice looks like and what really makes a difference to students learning,” said Dr. Erick Witherspoon, Director of Professional Development Services for Generation Ready. “Having a chance to partner with principals who are working through that gives us an opportunity to bring our expertise to the table about what is possible with their students.” Dr. Devin Dillon, Chief Academic...

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE August 25, 2014 Head Start Program in Mississippi Offers Teachers Instructional Support Generation Ready to Provide On-Site Professional Development to Eight Head Start Centers JACKSON, MISS – In an effort to improve instructional scores within its Head Start programs, the Gulf Coast Community Action Agency hired national professional development provider Generation Ready to deliver training and instructional support to teachers. This fall, Generation Ready, a leading provider of leader and teacher professional learning services, will begin working with teachers at eight Mississippi Head Start centers serving more than 1,400 children. Dr. Barbara Coatney, executive director of the Gulf Coast Community Action Agency, said her eight centers received composite instructional scores totaling 2.7. The lowest score is a 2.5 for Head Start centers. “Instead of waiting until I'm caught in that lower 10th percentile, I decided to get our teachers some additional help to make sure they are ready,” said Dr. Coatney. “In order for the poorest children in America to make it, they need a strong foundation. That is why I want them to really learn before they leave our Head Start program.” John Buchanan, Generation Ready’s general manager for the South Region, praised the agency for taking concrete steps to improve instruction. “This is the first time to my knowledge that a Head Start program took the initiative to train its teachers in order to better provide the instructional foundation that will prepare students for success throughout their school careers,” said Buchanan. Generation Ready’s education consultants will provide 47 days of on-site support and one-on-one consultation with an emphasis on literacy. Workshops and classroom-embedded professional development will...

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE August 4, 2014 Generation Ready Strengthens School Leadership Services Generation Ready also announces addition of Josh Klaris to Leadership Team NEW YORK, N.Y. – The principal who can simply walk the halls and dole out discipline in schools is a thing of the past. Now more than ever, the role of principals is multifaceted as they transition into instructional leaders while balancing the inordinate responsibilities that are embedded into the position. Principals must learn to constantly focus their schools on the thoroughness of classroom learning while at the same time distribute responsibility for improvement to teams within the school. In July, dozens of school leadership teams from New York City attended a three-day intensive leadership institute to learn how to do just this. Hosted by Generation Ready, one of the largest providers of professional development and school improvement services in the country, the institute was based on the pioneering work of Dr. Richard Elmore, Gregory R. Anrig Professor of Educational Leadership, Administration, Planning and Social Policy, Harvard Graduate School of Education. The institute was designed to help school leadership teams make meaningful enhancements in student achievement using Dr. Elmore’s innovative “internal coherence” framework. Dr. Elmore, who led the conference, also serves as advisory board chair for Generation Ready. Principals and their teams collaborated with fellow educators and consultants on the importance of creating conditions that drive and sustain improved instructional practice in every school. Participants were also asked to develop a bold vision for instruction and identify the learning that would be required to make this vision a reality. “One of the real...

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE June 16, 2014 Generation Ready Names Cal Hastings to Leadership Team Veteran educator led New York City's middle school literacy efforts New York, N.Y. – Cal Hastings, a longtime educator who has led the New York City Department of Education Middle School Quality Initiative (MSQI) for the past three years, has joined Generation Ready as senior director of middle school literacy. The MSQI is one of the largest research-based middle school reading initiatives in the United States, impacting an estimated 49,000 New York City students. Generation Ready has been a close partner with Hastings and the New York City Department of Education on the project, which has resulted in significant gains for at-risk readers, said Generation Ready’s CEO Justin Serrano. “What we have learned in partnering with the MSQI schools is that literacy, and specifically reading, is the critical challenge our young people face in the path toward high school graduation and beyond,” Serrano said. “Cal is uniquely suited to lead our efforts as we share the successful approach of Generation Ready’s own Middle School Literacy Initiative with schools around the country.” Hastings said that the research is pretty clear that a student graduating eighth grade and reading at the sixth- grade level or below has a poor chance of succeeding in high school. He noted national data indicating that less than a third of adolescents from low-income communities graduate from middle school reading at grade level. “The time is now to double down on middle school reading,” Hastings said, adding...

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE May 2, 2014 White paper documents keys to effective teaching of literacy Ability to integrate a range of instructional approaches and resources is critical New York, N.Y. – For more than 50 years, experts have debated the best way to teach all students to read and write successfully. Now, a white paper by Generation Ready Chief Academic Officer Sheena Hervey concludes that the most successful teachers are able to skillfully integrate a range of instructional approaches and resources to meet the diverse learning needs of their students. As the only national provider of leader and teacher professional learning services that uniquely combines deep instructional job-embedded expertise and innovative technology tools, Generation Ready’s roots are in literacy instruction. Hervey comes from New Zealand where she worked as a teacher, administrator and literacy advisor and also played a role in implementing national standards. “Today’s classrooms are complex and dynamic learning environments,” said Hervey. “Identifying the factors that affect student achievement has been an object of study for some time, but now there is documented evidence of the most effective features of teaching that lead to positive outcomes.” Titled “What is Effective Teaching of Literacy,” the paper documents that effective teachers: Know the literacy processes and the teaching practices that determine how their students learn Know what their students need to understand and to do to meet higher standards Know their students as individual learners Have high expectations for students and encourage them to take risks Have flexibly to use a range of instructional practices Engage students in...

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE via Truenorthlogic April 7, 2014 Weld North Acquires Truenorthlogic Paving the Way for Educators to Excel and Students to Succeed Sandy, Utah – Weld North Holdings LLC, an investment company led by former Kaplan, Inc. CEO Jonathan Grayer, announced today that it has acquired a 100% interest in Truenorthlogic. Terms of the agreement were not disclosed. The acquisition of Truenorthlogic allows Weld North to continue to solidify its leadership in the K-12 digital education market and provide Truenorthlogic with the capital required to continue to advance its market-leading products and services. Sandy, Utah-based Truenorthlogic is the market-leading provider of SaaS-based K-12 talent management solutions. Since its founding in 2000, Truenorthlogic has grown to become the leader in the K-12 talent management solutions segment, providing its technology and services to more than 1,500 U.S. districts including eight of the largest 20 districts such as the New York City Department of Education, Chicago Public Schools and the Los Angeles Unified School District. The Company has achieved significant growth and has been ranked on the Inc. 5000 list six times as one of the fastest growing companies in America. Weld North’s investment will additionally bring industry expertise, resources and strategic direction to help accelerate Truenorthlogic’s growth. The partnership will allow the Company to operate more effectively and further build out its award-winning software platform. Weld North’s extensive experience in the digital education marketplace will help ensure Truenorthlogic’s sustained market leadership and product innovation. Truenorthlogic will operate as an independent entity within Weld North’s...

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