Juni Learning, an online learning platform that offers engaging courses for kids, announced it has raised $10.5 million in a Series A funding round.
The round, which was closed prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, was led by Forerunner Ventures, with participation from AME Cloud Ventures, led by Yahoo founder Jerry Yang, Index Ventures, and Pear VC.
Founded in 2017 by Vivian Shen and Ruby Lee, Juni Learning offers computer science, math, and English courses for students aged 8 to 18 years old. It offers a fundamentally different virtual experience to help kids learn in a new and engaging way. The online learning platform features dynamic projects and videos, as well as private and group classes with instructors handpicked from the top universities in the US.
Juni Learning provides an extensive curriculum personalized for each student, preparing students for the future and inspiring the leaders of tomorrow. Its instructors are trained in its curriculum delivery, allowing them to focus 100% of their attention on teaching and engaging kids through private or small group environments.
Speaking about the company, Vivian Shen, Co-founder and CEO of Juni Learning, said in a statement,
“We originally started Juni Learning to empower kids by enhancing skills and coding abilities that could prepare them for the future, but the community has become so much more. Amid the COVID-19 outbreak, millions of kids have been out of school. Maintaining intellectual curiosity and rigorous standards from home has proven to be a massive challenge for schools and parents. Juni Learning is responding to these critical needs by expanding our offerings and hiring even more engaging live instructors who are motivated to reach as many students as possible.”
According to a press statement, the latest funding has enabled the San Francisco-based company to unveil new curriculums in math and English. Designed for students of grades 6-12, these proprietary curriculums map to common core standards in order to supplement, enhance, and reinforce the skills taught in schools across the country. The company said that the curriculums will be available through one-on-one sessions as well as learning pods or cohorts of up to four students per class beginning September 2020.
Commenting on the funding, Eurie Kim of Forerunner Ventures said,
“The need for quality online learning solutions, particularly in computer science and math, was already hitting a meaningful inflection point in the existing educational system. In fact, this need will only increase as students are challenged with making up for lost class time and lapses in consistent instruction. Juni Learning developed and refined an exceptional instructional model well before the pandemic, and it can be expanded in powerful ways moving forward to supplement learning and address deficits.”
Juni Learning said that with the new funding it also added and trained hundreds more instructors to meet student needs throughout the pandemic and delivered over 50,000 classes over the last three months alone. The company also introduced online coding bootcamps, webinars, and group sessions and provided tuition waivers to families of healthcare workers on the front lines of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The San Francisco-based company said it will also use the funds to continue hiring instructors and expanding its accessible and high-quality courses for kids across the globe.