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  • Writer's pictureJoanne Jacobs

AltSchool reinvents itself

AltSchool, a private school start-up that once promised to reinvent education, is reinventing itself, reports Adam Satariano on Bloomberg News.

Students at a San Francisco AltSchool work on their laptops. Photo: Melia Robinson/Business Insider

Max Ventilla, a former Google exec, “sold investors on a promise to build modern, technology-infused schools that would revolutionize education,” writes Satariano. Nine mini-schools opened in California and New York, charging $30,000 in annual tuition. But the for-profit venture lost money.

AltSchool is closing several schools and will shift to selling its technology to other schools, says Ventilla.

Some parents complain AltSchool cares more about technology than teaching children, reports Melia Robinson on Business Insider.

Parents told Business Insider they expected their children to be engaged in activities handpicked for them but that assignments were more or less the same for the class.

Several parents told Robinson that “teachers and administrators dismissed their concerns” when their children fell behind. “If the situation grew severe, the school recommended ‘individualized services,’ like one-on-one tutoring, which AltSchool provides for a monthly fee of $200 to $850.”

In the winter 2017 Education Next, Tom Vander Ark and Daniel Scoggin debate limiting “screen time” in school.

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