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7 STEM Startups Win Big at Silicon Valley Software Competition
Seven ed tech startups have won a Silicon Valley competition for STEM software developers and will get the chance to pilot their creations in local Bay Area schools.
Modeled after the TV show "Shark Tank," the iHub Pitch Games let a dozen game makers -- plucked from an initial 41 applicants -- pitch their software to a panel of educators and business leaders, including Jed York, the CEO of the San Francisco 49ers, Mike Smith, former undersecretary of the U.S. Department of Education, and administrators from local school districts.
The winners are:
- BrightLoop, a web-based tool for tracking student progress;
- CodeMonkey, an online game that teaches computer programming;
- MathChat, which lets students collaborate on homework or classwork;
- TeachMe, an educational games and apps engine;
- Mathspace, a tablet-based math app;
- Mosa Mack Science, a middle school science program; and
- Tuva Labs, which empowers students to learn basic data science skills.
As part of their prize, the developers will collaborate with 24 teachers in 12 different school districts, who will test various pieces of winning software with their students and provide feedback -- an invaluable opportunity for budding ed tech entrepreneurs.
The competition is a part of the Silicon Valley Education Foundation, whose mission is to connect developers and teachers to test new technologies.
Stephen Noonoo is an education technology journalist based in Los Angeles. He is on Twitter @stephenoonoo.