MCH Strategic Data Takes Investment Stake in edWeb.net, an Innovative Social and Learning Network for Educators

KANSAS CITY, MO and PRINCETON, NJ – May 3, 2012 – MCH Strategic Data and edWeb.net announced today that MCH has taken a 30% investment stake in edWeb.net, an innovative social and learning network that is changing the way educators connect, collaborate, and engage in professional development.

edWeb is making professional learning opportunities available for free to 3.5 million educators across the U. S. edWeb’s mission ties directly to the recommendations of the National Education Technology Plan which states that “Social networks can be used to provide educators with career-long personal learning tools and resources that make professional learning timely and relevant as well as an ongoing activity that continually improves practice and evolves their skills over time.”

“edWeb’s innovative and disruptive model is changing education for the better, and MCH is so excited to be part of it,” said Peter Long, CEO of MCH Strategic Data. “This is a unique opportunity for MCH to be a part of something that truly impacts educators and administrators in a positive way. We help edWeb reach 3.5 million educators in the U.S., and supply the data to study the impact of connected teaching on performance.” There is no other social network, specifically for the education community, with this reach and depth of data.

With MCH’s partnership, edWeb membership has tripled in size over the past 15 months to 34,000 members and over 600 communities. edWeb’s free professional learning programs are offered on topics including Emerging Technology for School Librarians, Game-Based Learning, Teaching Students with Autism, Mobile Learning, Implementing Common Core Standards, Technology in Schools, New Teacher Help, and more.

All of edWeb’s programs are free and provide educators with CE certificates for participation. This is significant since most school districts lack the funding and expertise to provide professional development, especially technology-based professional development that is so critical in today’s high-tech global economy. Teachers don’t have the resources to pay for this on their own. edWeb’s programs are both live and recorded, providing anytime, anywhere access.

edWeb’s programs are free thanks to the support of non-profit and for-profit organizations that are also committed to providing free professional learning opportunities for educators. Those organizations include AT&T, BrainPOP, CoSN, Eden Autism Services, ETA Hand2Mind, Follett Software Company, NASSP, NCTAF, and SIIA among others.

Lisa Schmucki, the founder and CEO of edWeb.net commented, “By partnering with MCH, we’ve been able to merge our social network with the outreach and data provided by the MCH K-12 database. It’s an ideal partnership that has enabled us to grow quickly but with a very high quality membership. We’re building a data mine every day that helps us identify best practices so we can coach educators and our partners on how to create active engaged communities that provide the high quality PD experiences teachers need.”

An edWeb member writes, “This is by far the best PLN [personal learning network] for educators that I have found! I send out a tech tidbit each week to my staff and always include something new that I’ve discovered on the site and in communities. I believe that online PLNs are the way that many districts are heading, not just because of budget cuts, but because this is the wave of the future…present!” (Janna Elfrink, Instructional Technology Specialist, Reeds Spring R-IV School District, Reeds Spring, MO)

MCH has been an edWeb partner since 2009. CEO Peter Long and President John Hood have been committed to edWeb’s mission of reaching educators and encouraging them to use this new technology to extend their personal learning networks. As part of the MCH investment stake, edWeb.net will have access to MCH’s K-12 education database with detailed demographic data on 15,000 school districts and 120,000 schools, plus a national database of 3.5 million educators who are reachable via email. Using their combined resources, edWeb and MCH are researching how online communities are helping teachers and changing educational practices.

Peter Long explained how this new venture supports the mission established by his grandfather in founding the company, “MCH Strategic Data was founded in 1928 by my grandfather, Dr. Forrest E. Long, a professor of education at New York University, and the founder of Junior High Clearing House. It was an educational journal for secondary schools that was a ‘clearing house’ of ideas and research about education. If he were alive today, he would be thrilled to see this new technology and how MCH’s education data is making such a positive impact for educators and the education industry by sharing ideas and best practices for professional development.”

About edWeb.net | www.edWeb.net
edWeb.net is a professional social and learning network for the education community that makes it easy to connect and collaborate with colleagues, share information and best practices, and create professional learning communities. edWeb promotes collaboration with easy-to-use Web 2.0 tools that transform the way educators share information and receive professional development. edWeb hosts professional learning communities for educators on key topics in education. Through a partnership with MCH Strategic Data, edWeb reaches out to more than 3.5 million K-12 educators in the U.S. to promote the value of online collaboration and personal learning networks. edWeb.net is free for educators and is funded with the support of partners and sponsors. Learn more at www.edweb.net. For further information about edWeb.net, contact Lisa Schmucki, founder and CEO, at 800-575-6015, ext. 100 or by email at lisa@edweb.net.

About MCH Strategic Data | www.mchdata.com
MCH Strategic Data, founded in 1928, is America’s leading compiler of business-to-institution (B2i) databases. MCH compiles detailed demographic, geographic, funding, and contact information on 1.1 million institutions and 8 million institutional decision makers. MCH industry segments include education, early childhood, healthcare, government, and religious institutions. In the education market, MCH compiles data on 15,000 school districts and 120,000 public, private, and parochial schools, plus more than 4 million educators. MCH data is used by a wide variety or organizations including companies, non-profits, government, and research organizations. MCH is a strategic partner of edWeb.net and is making it possible for edWeb to offer valuable professional learning and networking opportunities to more than 3.5 million educators. MCH is headquartered in Sweet Springs, Missouri, with additional offices in California, Colorado, Connecticut, Illinois, Massachusetts, and Missouri. For more information, contact Peter Long, CEO, at 816-309-7666, or by email at peterlong@mchdata.com.