Domestic, Elementary / Primary / Junior, For-Profit, High school / Secondary 2, Investors, Required, STEM / Science, Technology, Education, Math, Technology - Written by on Wednesday, August 3, 2011 7:35 - 0 Comments

Apollo Purchases Math Specialist & Carnegie Mellon Tech in $96.5M Deal

photo: Carnegie Learning

by Elbert Chu


Apollo Group Inc. (NASDAQ: APOL) agreed to a $96.5M deal to purchase Carnegie Learning and related technology from Carnegie Mellon University. Apollo’s stock, up over 25% year-to-date,  is one of the few that seems bulletproof in a beleaguered for-profit education sector.

In the battle to teach critically lagging STEM (science, technology, engineering, math) skills to American students, Apollo has chosen to bring in a specialist.

Dow Jones newswires reports:

Co-Chief Executive Gregory Cappelli said Carnegie Learning addressed “a fundamental skills gap in mathematics that is prevalent among today’s postsecondary students.” Apollo agreed to pay $75 million for the company, which publishes research-based math curricula including the Cognitive Tutor math software. The $21.5 million payment to the university for the related technology, meanwhile, is payable over a 10-year period.

Carnegie Learning was founded in 1998 by a team of Carnegie Mellon University scientists, in conjunction with veteran math teachers. The publisher provides math instruction to more than 600,000 students in 3,000 schools nationwide.

Apollo expects the transactions will add to earnings by 7 cents to 9 cents in fiscal 2012. The deals are expected to close in the first quarter of that year, which typically ends in November.

Carnegie learning is a combination of analytics tools for the teacher and collaborative tools for the students. Trip Gabriel at the New York Times reports:

Carnegie Learning, based in Pittsburgh, was founded in 1998 by scientists from Carnegie Mellon University who developed an approach to teaching math that combines classroom work with computer instruction. Its Cognitive Tutor software analyzes students’ weaknesses as they work through problems and offers new problems until they are ready to move on.

Carnegie Learning is one of a number of small- to medium-size companies that offer instructional material for use on computers and tablets and data analysis for schools, a market that has piqued investors’ interest in the past year. It says its curricula is used by 600,000 students in grades 6 through 12, in 3,000 schools nationwide.

“We believe that adaptive and personalized learning is the future of education,” said Dennis Ciccone, CEO of Carnegie Learning. “We are seeing significant, measurable results in student engagement and performance in mathematics.”


Full article at Nasdaq.

Full article at New York Times.

Press release.

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