How will the stimulus package impact educators and edtech companies?

Throughout President Joe Biden's campaign run, he stressed the importance of opening schools quickly, safely and efficiently. As of March 6, the Senate passed a $1.9 trillion stimulus package with $170 billion dedicated solely to K-12 schools and higher education institutions. Decision-makers are encouraged to put funding toward making the effort to reopen buildings carefully and cautiously and regain educational momentum across various age groups, according to Future Ed.

Many schools will focus on getting back to "normal" as well as they can and will likely dedicate a large portion of their funding to this top priority. However, this doesn't necessarily mean edtech companies don't have an opportunity to sell their products and continue their marketing efforts.

The breakdown

The educational focus of the March 2021 American Rescue Plan was designed to stabilize education budgets after a major decrease in state revenue across the country over the last year. The amount given to the educational sector amounted to $168 billion, broken down as:

  • $126 billion for K-12 schools.
  • $40 billion for higher education institutions.
  • $2.7 billion for governors.

Schools are expected to use these funds for reducing classroom sizes, improving ventilation, social and emotional learning (SEL), personal protective equipment (PPE), more nurses aides and counselors.

Are edtech companies out of luck?

Even with the stimulus package in motion, hybrid learning methods will still be an option across the country. Schools may focus a major portion of their efforts on creating a safer learning environment, but another top priority should be catching up the students who may have struggled while learning in a remote learning environment.

A portion of the funding would be used for challenge grants focused on educational equity. This is where edtech companies can be a major asset. The idea of conducting post-COVID assessments to better understand which learning environments students best thrive in can help schools get back on track and prepare for the future if something similar to the pandemic happens again.

Hybrid learning options will still likely still be offered over the next year.Hybrid learning options will still likely still be offered over the next year.

How should edtech companies react?

The education sector is going through rapid changes and may continue to do so over the next few years due to the aftermath of the pandemic. With the stimulus package, schools will work hard to open their buildings as safely as possible and get students back in the classroom with their peers and teachers. While it might not seem like edtech companies have a chance to provide assistance during these trying times (or that they may not be the priority at the moment), this isn't necessarily true.

Businesses experienced in marketing to schools will find that now's the right time to adjust their marketing approach to better connect with the top-tier decision-makers. Edtech companies need to reassess their current marketing strategy and opportunities and make sure that they can adapt to the wants and needs of individual schools and districts

There are plenty of ways edtech companies can focus on offering support during the COVID-19 pandemic. Does a school need to put forth more effort for extra tutoring to catch kids up? Each district will be focused on its own unique issues and have different priorities after receiving their share of the stimulus fund, but edtech companies can hone in on matching the needs of the district and providing the support and assistance as needed.

Are you struggling to understand how to reach and connect with school and district-level decision-makers? Agile can help. Contact us today to learn more.

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