Canadian education technology startup Crowdmark announced today that they have raised $600,000 in seed funding through the University of Toronto Early-Stage Technology (UTEST) program, MaRS Innovation and U of T’s Connaught Fund, among others.
Crowdmark is positioned to save cash-strapped Departments of Education millions by making massive-scale testing more efficient.
The Crowdmark assessment interface, informed by decades of teaching experience and research by company co-founders James Colliander and Martin Muñoz at the University of Toronto, streamlines the complicated and time-consuming grading workflow for teachers.
Crowdmark archives student work and all grading feedback into individual digital portfolios that students and parents may access any time online and via mobile devices.
Through two separate pilot projects, Crowdmark has achieved proof-of-concept as a novel and scalable solution to the problem of assessment blockage that eats into already limited resources in education systems worldwide. “Collectively, teachers spend more than two billion hours per year grading student work, by hand. Administering EQAO costs the Ontario government $33 million every year,” says Colliander, CEO. “Crowdmark cuts the time teachers spend scoring and empowers them to spend more time actually responding to their students. We think this is time well spent.”