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Edtech incubator launches with Tech City support

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TCIO & the Education Foundation have teamed up to launch the Edtech incubator, to help develop projects and ideas around technology in education

The Edtech incubator is inspired by similar US organisations, such as the New Schools Venture Fund, Schools 4.0 and Imagine K12, and aims to help support the next generation of education entrepreneurs in schools, colleges, universities, startups and companies to take innovative ideas to market.

Launch party

At a launch event last night (Thursday) speakers, including Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Education and Skills Matthew Hancock and angel investor Sherry Coutu, celebrated the Edtech incubator’s launch.

Led by The Education Foundation, and in partnership with TCIO, the Edtech incubator will host a range of activities, including an Edtech club, which will connect Tech City companies with schools, colleges and universities; a national accelerator programme, which will open this summer with £50,000 of seed funding from the Education Foundation; and a new venture philanthropy fund, which is currently being developed with Edtech’s partners.

Report: EdTech spend will reach $252bn by 2020

Edtech is also being supported by an advisory group, including representatives from Google and Sony, to help connect entrepreneurs and investors.

“The UK is becoming a global hub for new technology and innovation and education technology has the potential to be one of the biggest growth industries for the economy,” says Ben Southworth, deputy CEO of TCIO.

The Edtech incubator will be led by Ian Fordham, co-director of the Education Foundation. A former teacher, Fordham has a long track record in the education, tech and policy world, including scaling up major policy initiatives and running collaborations with Google, Skype and Harvard University.

“We need to unleash the power of technology for teaching and learning for everyone – from young people to educators, startups to more established companies,” says Fordham.

“The Edtech incubator will help take their ideas to scale, both here in the UK and across the world. This summer, we will launch a national call for projects to be part of the accelerator programme. But unlike many other programmes, we’re not just looking for startups, but also for innovations coming out of schools, colleges and universities.”

Edtech is currently based in The Hub Westminster, but it is looking to relocate to Tech City soon.

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