Students have faced disruptions in learning due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Edtech companies can market their services for summer school, after-school programs, and more.
The COVID-19 pandemic upended traditional learning models. Schools and districts that had barely had begun to consider applications of online learning suddenly had to place all of their students into remote digital environments.
“COVID-19 and student performance, equity, and U.S. education policy” a report from the Economic Policy Institute, found that reductions in learning time related to the pandemic have harmed both educational attainment and overall personal development. The change in the learning environment, general lack of previous planning, lack of reliable access to key resources for vulnerable students, and other factors have all led to delays and disruption.
Helping students catch up
“Negative impacts in math achievement have occurred to due educational disruption.”
The EPI pointed to summer learning, as well as after-school activities and extended school schedules, as avenues for helping students catch up. As an edtech provider, your company may want to review its current portfolio of products and services, as well as any research and development efforts, to evaluate whether existing and new offerings could easily be applied to these educational environments.
The learning areas that have seen the most negative impact from restrictions due to the COVID-19 pandemic are also important to consider. The Brookings Institution reviewed 2019-2020 academic year and fall 2020 student data to identify key areas of concern. Specifically, it looked for differences based on results from roughly 4.4 million students in grades 3-8 who took the MAP Growth reading and math assessments in both years.
Reading assessments saw little change, despite the many restrictions put in place by the pandemic. Performance didn’t significantly decrease, potentially indicating that reading resources and support were accessible and valuable enough to provide consistent results even in a remote learning environment. While developing student reading, comprehension, and analysis skills is always an important need for educators, this may not be an especially pressing, widespread need when it comes to catching students up, specifically.
Achievement related to math dropped significantly from the 2019-2020 MAP Growth assessments to the fall 2020 assessments. Year to year, students lost 5-10 percentage points across each grade. This may indicate a broader need for solutions and support related to math education. Edtech businesses that provide math-focused products should consider making these offerings a foundational component of their marketing plans, highlighting current issues with math education and discussing how their solutions can address this concern.
Opportunities for edtech companies aren’t limited to specific areas of instruction. EPI indicated that summer programs that take a holistic approach — supporting the whole child — are vital for addressing interrupted education. Tools that streamline enrollment, student management, and tracking progress can offer value, reducing administrative work and giving educators more time to engage with students.
Online learning tools, no matter the specific subject or grade level, are another consideration. Some students may continue to learn online, whether in a fully remote or hybrid environment. Solutions that encourage access, break down technological barriers and facilitate learning can be especially valuable.
A strong marketing effort begins with trustworthy data
You understand the purpose of your products and services, and likely already have an ideal marketing and sales prospect in mind. Reliable data for professionals, like contact information, title, and similar details, can go a long way in making marketing more efficient and effective. The same is true of school and district data tied to programs, initiatives, student body size, and more.