Mental Health Resources

PresenceLearning Acquires Global Teletherapy and Secures New Majority Stakeholders, Preparing for Expanded K–12 Special Education Offerings

PresenceLearning, a provider of teletherapy software for special education and mental health providers in K–12 schools, has completed two transactions that pave the way for significant growth and will help build the next generation of technology for therapists to expand student services, the company said.

PresenceLearning has acquired Global Teletherapy, a provider of teletherapy services to virtual K–12 schools, and it has signed a definitive agreement for Spectrum Equity and The Rise Fund to acquire a majority stake in the company. “Bain Capital Double Impact and Catalyst Investors will retain minority stakes, and Bain will continue to have representation on the company’s Board of Directors,” PresenceLearning said in a news release. Terms were not disclosed.

Teletherapy continues to emerge as an urgent solution for students needing more access to high-quality therapy and mental health services, and as clinicians demand more remote work alternatives to improve the impact and the sustainability of their work, the release noted.

“Students with learning differences and mental health needs have been among the most impacted by the pandemic, and there is ever-increasing pressure placed on the hard-working special education and mental health teams serving in schools,” the company said. PresenceLearning targets its teletherapy solutions to meet the needs specific to students with learning differences such as in special education programs.

The new investors enable PresenceLearning to invest heavily in its next phase of growth, the company said. Kate Eberle Walker will continue as CEO of the combined company, according to the news release.

“Spectrum and The Rise Fund bring a wealth of expertise in building industry-leading technology platforms and are the ideal partners as we provide a new level of innovation to technology solutions for special education,” Eberle Walker said. “We are focused on doing everything we can to support special education teams and ensure that every child has access to a qualified therapist,.”

Steve LeSieur, managing director at Spectrum Equity, said his firm sees “an enormous opportunity for PresenceLearning to revolutionize the way special education and mental health teams deliver high quality instruction and care across our education system and increase access for students.”

The new partnership and planned growth in capabilities will meet special education needs caused by shortages of clinicians in the field that became more obvious and urgent during the pandemic, explained John Rogers, partner and education sector lead at The Rise Fund.

“We have seen across our portfolio the vital role that technology can play in the expansion of equity and access in education,” Rogers said. “We look forward to partnering with PresenceLearning in growing its business, while also maximizing its impact on the high need populations the company serves and to supporting PresenceLearning’s inclusive culture, which prioritizes diversity of voice across its employees, providers, and students.”

For more information, visit PresenceLearning’s website.

About the Author

Kristal Kuykendall is editor, 1105 Media Education Group. She can be reached at [email protected].