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Headsprout Closes $8 Million Series D Round of Financing

Headsprout, producers of Headsprout Early Reading, the first and only scientifically-developed online reading program to offer schools a money-back effectiveness guarantee, recently announced that it closed an $8 million series D financing to expand its sales, marketing and new product development efforts. Kaplan, Inc., a leading international provider of educational services, led the round with a $3.5 million investment and existing investors including Roser Ventures, Sofinnova Ventures and others contributed the balance of the funding.

“This new round of investment will enable us to expand our base of more than 1,000 schools and 300,000 learners nationwide that have used Headsprout Early Reading to achieve grade-level and beyond reading scores,” said Dave Anderson, CEO of Headsprout. “We are pleased that Kaplan and our other investors have chosen to support our unique beginning reading product and our plans to leverage our patented Headsprout Learning Technology to produce additional instructional programs that guarantee student outcomes. Headsprout Early Reading is an exceptional beginning reading program and its underlying instructional technology can be leveraged to teach virtually any subject.”

Headsprout guarantees school districts that young students who complete its research-based Headsprout Early Reading program will read at grade-level. With its guarantee, Headsprout is pioneering a new era of accountability for reading instruction effectiveness, standing shoulder to shoulder with educators to ensure that each child learns to read.

”The U.S. literacy numbers are simply unacceptable”, said Dr. T. V. Joe Layng, Senior Scientist and Co-founder of Headsprout. “According to the latest U.S. government figures, it is estimated that more than 20 million people are illiterate. Nearly 70% of all 4th graders today are not proficient readers and 35% of 4th graders are not reading at a "basic" level. In urban environments these numbers are even higher. And sadly, over the past two decades these numbers have hardly changed. Teachers and administrators are being held accountable for student performance. It is time for publisher accountability in our education system and Headsprout, with its effectiveness guarantee, is leading the charge.”

Founded in 1999, Headsprout is a producer of computer-based learning programs that reliably teach fundamental academic skills. Headsprout Early Reading is a scientifically developed online reading program that effectively and reliably teaches 4- to 7-year-olds how to read. Headsprout guarantees grade-level reading success for each child. Children enjoy fun, interactive animated lessons, averaging 20 minutes in length, and Headsprout's patented instructional technology adapts to the unique needs of each learner. 80 printed stories are also an integral part of the program. Headsprout's mission is to be a major force in helping eliminate illiteracy in young children in this country in this decade.

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