Boston-based EdTech startup AllHere has recently raised $8 million in a Series A funding round led by Spero Ventures.
The latest funding takes to the company’s total raised to date to $12.1 million. The company plans to utilize the fresh capital to drive growth and improve the AI technology behind its chat product.
AllHere was founded in 2019 by Joanna Smith, a former district attendance and family engagement coordinator, with the mission to improve attendance rates for K-12 students. It is now a leading AI-powered attendance intervention system that combines evidence-based strategies with automation, analytics, and engagement capabilities, in an easy, all-in-one platform for addressing chronic absenteeism and improving overall student engagement and outcomes at scale.
Speaking about the company, Joanna Smith said, “I got to see firsthand how attendance challenges can have an impact on children’s outcomes. From that, I was inspired to focus on supporting families, at first with human-intensive, in-person interventions and support.”
Smith’s experience revealed the frustrations that often arise with attendance and constant absenteeism – overwhelming administrative burdens and communication obstacles that divert attention from effective intervention. Although there were attendance policies in place, Smith discovered there was no way to track why students are chronically absent. This led her to start the company and focus on supporting families.
AllHere supports student participation with AI chatbot technology and attendance intervention solutions to improve attendance and reduce chronic absenteeism for onsite, hybrid, and remote learning settings.
According to a report, new statewide school attendance data show the percentage of students deemed chronically absent rose during the pandemic as compared to the last three academic years.
Traditionally, most schools use mailers sent home and at-home visits, in person, to families and students when chronic absenteeism arises. Smith said that approach is hard to scale. AllHere was earlier focused on supporting families with those in-person in human interventions, but when COVID-19 shut down schools and took in-person interactions away, it launched its first chatbot that’s powered by conversational AI.
According to AllHere, only 6% of families access email on a daily basis and around 98% of families are willing to open and answer texts. AllHere’s AI-powered chatbot helps specifically because even if schools have a text platform, they can struggle with implementing personalized conversations at scale.
AllHere has evolved into a mission-driven startup. It now turns interventions into outcomes for students – helping teachers, school leaders, data analysts, social workers, counselors, and attendance teams across the US. In the past year, the number of schools using the platform has grown by over 700%, reaching 8,000 schools across 34 states. The company claims to have tracked over 130,000 interventions to make the data accessible for earlier warning signs and opportunity recognition.