When Sam Chaudhary and Liam Don founded ClassDojo in 2011, they envisioned creating a product that would serve as an alternative and better platform for boosting communication between teachers, parents, and students. Their initial vision received $21 million in Series B fundraising several years ago, but the announcement last month of an additional $35 million raised through Series C funding places the company in an even stronger position for growth. It is not by pure chance that ClassDojo was selected to join Inc.’s list of 30 Under 30 back in 2015.
The company’s founders and 40 professionals listen to teachers when incorporating feedback into their app, and create ground-up change through their platform by making the classroom experience more interactive and inclusive for children and parents. This positive culture in classrooms and schools is reinforced by the app’s creative point system, which draws on technology to reward students for good behavior and pings parents about what their children are learning in school that day. By condensing the traditional “gold star” reward system for children who perform well in school and parent-teacher conferences into one interactive community, ClassDojo is able to foster a positive culture that is more modern in its approach to communication than existing systems. As such, it is understandable why more than 2 in 3 pre-kindergarten through eighth-grade schools utilize the platform on a daily basis.
A new offering that puts ClassDojo ahead of its competitors and moves the company towards longer-term financial viability is the Beyond Learning add-on released in the fourth quarter of last year. While the ClassDojo core app is free of charge to its users, Beyond Learning is an optional subscription-based platform that includes tips for how parents can help their children build strong interpersonal skills like gratitude and kindness. These skills, usually not taught explicitly in school through lectures or graded curricula, are integral to children’s long-term success and happiness. The Beyond Learning subscription could be a huge step forward for creating positive classroom cultures by facilitating more nuanced interactions between parents and children, who in turn internalize positive behaviors and bring this knowledge to school.