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Press Release

Zearn Provides Real-Time Snapshot on the State of U.S. Math Education Through New OI Economic Tracker by Opportunity Insights

May 7, 2020

The COVID-19 pandemic has driven massive disruptions for teachers and students nationwide, with school closures lasting months. Recently-published summary data from Zearn Math will give decision-makers a view into how the current crisis is impacting math education at a local level and inform tailored solutions for students across the country.

The Opportunity Insights Economic Tracker, developed by economists at Harvard and Brown universities, combines data from partners across sectors with independent academic analysis to give a real-time look at American economic activity. Two of the key indicators are math participation and progress, for which Zearn has provided aggregated and anonymized Zearn Math data showing activity and lesson completion over time for students using the platform before closures. The data can be further filtered down by geography and income level.

"We began building Zearn Math seven years ago as a nonprofit to support teachers with helping all kids deeply learn and love math. As students are missing a full quarter of classroom instruction due to COVID-19, we feel a heightened need to offer our support to all educators. By contributing to this public resource, our hope is that decision-makers will have the data they need to make critical choices about how to address math education recovery," said Shalinee Sharma, Zearn's Chief Executive Officer. "We plan to continue to share data, information, and guidance that supports school and district leaders and teachers with building a COVID-19 learning recovery plan for all kids."

Zearn Math builds deep understanding of concepts and flexible problem-solving skills through an emphasis on visualization, drawing to solve, and concrete representations of abstract concepts. The curriculum's focus on inclusivity and accessibility aims to create a sense of belonging in the math classroom for all students by fostering the development of tenacious, lifelong learners. Each day, students learn in flexible and feedback-rich environments and are supported in accessing grade-level math with on-ramps and personalized feedback embedded throughout the curriculum, which includes over 800 digital lessons.

The Opportunity Insights Economic Tracker is available at https://tracker.opportunityinsights.org/