Sam Chaudhary earned a bachelor’s degree in mathematical economics from the University of Cambridge and Liam Don was doing research at the University of Durham. When they met in 2007 they became fast friends. They both had decided that because of their practical teaching experience they wanted to create and launch an education tech start-up company but they had one problem and that was what would their new company be able to do in the education market. To answer this question and to solve other problems, Sam and Liam decided to start from scratch by interviewing teachers.
They initially started doing teacher interviews in Paco Alto, California. They were both in the United States on tourist visas when they started this quest but their Visas expired after 90 days and the pair had to leave the States and go back to the United Kingdom. But that didn’t stop them, they kept asking the same question to every educator they found or met in the United Kingdom too. The question that they asked educators was “What’s the worst part of teaching?” After they began to collect the data from this question a pattern arose. The pattern was that the teaching and learning experience was not being shared with everyone involved in the student’s life. To get the best student results both Liam and Don thought that not only the teachers but also the parents and the students had to become involved in the process. And it was this sharing aspect made available through their revolutionary new application named ClassDojo that made sharing the child’s experiences possible.
Today just five years after its introduction, ClassDojo has millions of users worldwide. ClassDojo is being used by two-thirds of all schools across the world. This includes public, private, and charter schools and schools in 90% of school districts. It is also used in schools in over 180 countries across the world. The reason for its acceptance is easy to understand because of what the application does; it simply allows the teacher, parents, and students to connect within the classroom and not only get but also give feedback to all of the party’s involved with the teaching experience.
ClassDojo has become so popular that last summer in 2015 Lindsay McKinley, head of communications at ClassDojo, said that over 500,000 people downloaded their mobile app. This was more downloads than the mobile-app behemoths Yelp and Tinder. The reason for this seems pretty clear too. ClassDojo allows students to be encouraged to learn any kind of skill or value — whether it’s working hard, being kind or helping others. It also gives students a voice and a place where they can showcase and share their learning experiences by adding photographs and even videos to their own portfolios. It also allows students to share these moments with their parents. This also helps engage the child’s parents in the child’s learning experience. In addition, it also turns the child’s classroom into a shared digital community.
Because of its unique character, ClassDojo has raised $21 million dollars in a series B round of venture funding along with an initial $8.5 million dollars it raised in its first institutional funding along with $1.6 million dollars in seed money. In addition to its ability to attract investors, ClassDojo is one of the fastest growing education technology companies of all time.