Grand Prize Winners with Inspiring Stories of Dedication and Compassion Announced in Excelligence Teacher Appreciation Week Photo Contest
DALLAS, May 14, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- The winners of the Teacher Appreciation Week Photo Contest and national campaign #TeachersChangeLives have been announced by the contest organizers, Frog Street, ChildCare Education Institute (CCEI), Educational Products, Inc. (EPI) and Really Good Stuff, all divisions of Excelligence Learning Corporation. The 768 nominations from around the U.S. recount stories of compassion, dedication and enduring love in the classroom. Here are the top three winners and their profiles:
A total of 11,288 votes were cast for teachers during the designated voting period (April 30 – May 7, 2018). In addition to the Top 3 winners, random daily prizes were also awarded from the four sponsoring companies throughout the nomination period. Visit the social media pages of the sponsoring companies to view the daily winners from this contest.
The winners come from various backgrounds and philosophies of teaching – and all possess a deep and enduring commitment to their students.
"For teachers, our purpose is to make a difference in the lives of children each and every day," commented First Place Winner, Susan Nigosanti. "Our job is not to fill their buckets with facts but to encourage an active mind; one that will explore, investigate, and most importantly, love to learn. Children need to feel valued, respected, and loved. If we are good at our profession, a new facet of our students is revealed throughout the journey."
Discount School Supply's Donations To Head Start Top $1 Million
Early Childhood Education Products Leader Celebrates Milestone in Head Start Giving
MONTEREY, Calif., May 1, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- Excelligence Learning Corporation, a leading provider of educational tools and solutions to early childhood and elementary school teachers and parents, has once again partnered, through Discount School Supply (DSS), an Excelligence company, with the National Head Start Association (NHSA) through its Dollar Per Child Campaign to provide nationwide support for the nearly one million children currently in Head Start and Early Head Start programs. Dipak Golechha, CEO of Excelligence, presented its latest contribution, which bring total contributions over the $1 Million mark, to NHSA at the National Head Start Conference & Expo on April 25th in Anaheim, CA.
Reflecting on his organization's 20-year relationship with NHSA, Golechha noted, "There is ample evidence that early access to educational opportunities is critical for the underserved children in our communities if they are to succeed in school and, more importantly, in life. As leaders in providing the best educational tools and solutions to teachers and parents, we, at Excelligence and Discount School Supply, are proud to partner once again with NHSA and the Dollar Per Child Campaign that has benefitted millions of American children."
Head Start/Early Head Start has improved the lives of more than 32 million children and their families since its inception, and exemplifies the national commitment to give every child, regardless of circumstances at birth, an opportunity to succeed in school and in life. Through the Dollar Per Child campaign, which aims to raise one dollar for each of the one million vulnerable children Head Start serves each year, NHSA ensures that the voices of at-risk children and their families are heard. Dollar Per Child funds are used to amplify a unified voice, advocacy, and representation of all Head Start Children in Congress and on Capitol Hill, along with outreach and education to the public about the program.
Early Childhood Education Products Leader Sponsors 1 Million Crayon Drive
Discount School Supply's Colorations Brand Backs Crayon Collection Campaign
MONTEREY, Calif., April 23, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- Colorations®, the premier proprietary brand of childhood educational products company Discount School Supply (www.discountschoolsupply.com), is proud to sponsor Crayon Collection's 1 Million Crayon Drive which commenced on Earth Day 2018. The first of what will become an annual event will culminate on August 11th with a back-to-school celebration on school campuses and Head Start Centers across California to recycle, repack and distribute 1 Million Crayons to over 1,000 Head Start and/or Title 1 school partners. The Crayon Collection uses the process of repurposing gently used crayons - over 150 million crayons are thrown away each year by restaurants alone - as a relatable lesson to teach young children the benefits of recycling, reusing and reducing waste, and sharing with others less fortunate. The charity's efforts also help cut down on the $900 per year of personal income the average teacher spends outfitting his or her own underfunded classroom.
Children will participate by starting their own Crayon Collections in their neighborhoods and collect still-good crayons they no longer need from restaurants/their art supplies. Each participating child will receive a one-of-a-kind downloadable bookmark from the record-breaking children's book series, The Day The Crayons Came Home, thanks to Crayon Collection partner Penguin Random House. Instructions for starting a community crayon collection and how to donate gently-used crayons to Head Start Centers and Title 1 schools around the United States are available at crayoncollection.org/collection.html.
"There are 2 main goals for this campaign," says Sheila Morovati, Founder and President of the charity, Crayon Collection. "Our first goal is to shift the habit of waste that children experience by trashing still good crayons. Kids have many crayons laying around their homes, plus they receive a gift of 4 brand-new crayons when they dine at family friendly restaurants. Many times, children leave the crayons behind after their meal without realizing crayons do not decompose and are headed for the trash. Meanwhile children in schools a few miles away yearn for those same crayons. The second goal is to raise awareness for the pressures placed on our teachers to spend their personal earnings on classroom supplies, which we believe is simply unfair and unjust."
Dipak Golechha, CEO of Excelligence Learning Corporation, parent company of Discount School Supply added, "We're delighted that Colorations® is sponsoring this important initiative that encourages children to be environmentally responsible while sharing with those less fortunate. Moreover, it provides an excellent opportunity to give back to teachers who reach into their own pockets every day to make sure their classrooms are fully outfitted."
About Colorations® and Discount School Supply
Colorations® is an extensive arts and crafts brand which offers high quality and great classroom value. From bulky class packs to multiple proprietary paint products, adhesives, collage products and art tools, Colorations® truly has it all for less! Colorations® was created by Discount School Supply (DSS) which is the premiere one-stop shopping destination for early childhood education products, sold throughout the USA and in 40 countries, designed to help make early childhood learning fun. From its innovative and unique collection of exclusive items to well-known national brands, DSS has everything needed to support a classroom with everyday low prices and a 110% Low Price Guarantee. In addition to Colorations®, leading proprietary brands include: BioColor®, Excellerations®, MyPerfectClassroom® and Environments®. For more information about Discount School Supply, please visit www.discountschoolsupply.com.
About Crayon Collection
Crayon Collection is an international non-profit organization with a mission to inspire a commitment to the environmental consciousness and the infusion of art education in underfunded schools. The crayons are not altered in any way but are delivered from crayon collection sites to underserved schools locally. The charity was founded by Sheila Michail Morovati, and has successfully been collecting crayons from restaurant chains nationwide and donating them to vulnerable Title I Elementary schools or Head Start Preschools. With the help of professional artists and educators, Crayon Collection has developed a full art education program, which each crayon recipient school receives for free to use the crayons for deeper learning of the arts. Crayon Collection relies on volunteers around the globe, and uses this process of repurposing gently used crayons as a relatable tool for teaching young children the benefits of recycling, reusing and reducing waste as well as having a philanthropic experience. Visit www.crayoncollection.org for more information.
Excelligence Learning Divisions Announce Teacher Appreciation Week Photo Contest
(Dallas, TX) April 9, 2018 — Four prominent education companies within the Excelligence Learning Corporation have partnered to launch a national photo sharing contest with cash prizes and gift certificates in honor of Teacher Appreciation Week (May 7-11, 2018). Frog Street, ChildCare Education Institute (CCEI), Educational Products, Inc. (EPI) and Really Good Stuff have created a unique national campaign to highlight exceptional teachers who impact and change lives. The hashtag #TeachersChangeLives has been adopted for this contest.
“The very core of our mission at Excelligence is to provide tools and resources to educators who give tirelessly and unconditionally to enable students to succeed,” commented Dipak Golechha, CEO, Excelligence Learning Corporation. “We are thrilled to honor teachers through this contest and in a small way, acknowledge the important contributions they make in the lives of children each and every day.”
Friends, family, co-workers and students around the U.S. are invited to nominate an exceptional teacher by visiting the Excelligence Teacher Appreciation Week web page, excelligence.wishpond.com/TAWcontest/. Nominations and photo submissions will be accepted from April 9 through April 29, 2018. The voting period is April 30 – May 7, 2018. Nominations may be for a favorite teacher (with permission), or individuals may nominate themselves. The complete list of contest rules is available at http://bit.ly/2JjfFq2.
The top three teachers with the most votes from all the nominations submitted will be selected to be the 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place winners. The winners will be announced Friday, May 11, 2018, on the social media pages (Facebook, Twitter and Instagram) of the sponsoring companies, Frog Street, ChildCare Education Institute, EPI and Really Good Stuff. Winners will also be contacted via email.
Prizes for the top winners include $600 for 1st place, $300 for 2nd place, and $150 for 3rd place. Random daily winners will also be selected to receive over $2,300 in prizes, which include (10) $25 Amazon eGift Cards, $100 Discount School Supply gift certificate, Frog Street SPLASH 2018 Conference registration ($399 value), $100 Really Good Stuff gift certificate, $99 Individual Annual Training Subscription from ChildCare Education Institute, $75 Educational Products, Inc. gift certificate, and more. Additional prizes will be announced during the voting period.
Early Childhood Education Products Leader Launches State-of-the-Art Services for New Classroom and Center Openings Discount School Supply Utilizes Technology to Make the Design and Installation of Classrooms for Infants Through School Age Both Easy and Cost-Effective
MONTEREY, Calif., April 06, 2018 /Cision/ -- Discount School Supply (www.discountschoolsupply.com), the preeminent supplier of early childhood educational products in the USA and 40 countries, unveiled its expanded services to assist customers in the design and installation of new early childhood centers and classrooms. Utilizing the exclusive 3D Classroom Planner™, customers save time and money working with Discount School Supply’s design consultants to bring their classroom vision to life, showing how it will look in the amazing life-like brilliance of 3D Ultra HD 4K - MyPerfectClassroom.
Discount School Supply offers a comprehensive experience for its customers, providing assistance in all phases of setting up a new center, from design and product selection, then warehousing everything until the center is ready and supervising the delivery and installation. Laurel Johnston, Senior Director of Sales, noted that, “Our planning tools help customers find exactly what they need and quickly see how well the items will work in their classroom space. In addition, we’ve grouped together bundles of products to help educators create spaces for a particular purpose, so it’s even easier to purchase products for a specific learning area, such as outdoor learning or dramatic play.”
Jeff Clark, Vice President of Sales, added, “The 3D Classroom Planner™ is easy to use and customers have the added benefits of our design consultants’ unparalleled product knowledge and experience, as well as the best prices customers have come to expect from Discount School Supply.”
“At Discount School Supply, we’ve been assisting early childhood educators for over 30 years, setting up and outfitting classrooms and new centers all across the U.S.,” noted Dipak Golechha, parent company Excelligence Learning Corporation’s CEO. Golechha added, “With the introduction of our new classroom and center expansion services, we’re bringing cutting edge technology directly to educators, allowing them to visualize and arrange a classroom in 3D, creating the ideal space to meet their needs. Moreover, because we’ve eliminated the middleman, our customers get the benefit of a personalized service while outfitting their classroom in the most cost-effective manner.”
For more information on Discount School Supply’s new center openings and classroom expansion services, please contact a planning consultant at ContactAConsultant.
Educational Supplier Really Good Stuff Acquires Steve Spangler Science
Monroe, CT Company Attains Preeminent Position in STEM Learning Tools
MONTEREY, Calif., April 2, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- Really Good Stuff, LLC, a subsidiary of Excelligence Learning Corporation, the Monterey, California-based leading provider of educational tools and solutions to early childhood and elementary teachers and parents, announced its acquisition of Steve Spangler Science, the Denver-based creator and marketer of innovative STEM-based products and learning experiences that introduce young minds to future opportunities in science, technology, engineering and math. Founded in 1994 by Steve and Renee Spangler as an educational content provider aimed at teachers, the Company has grown to meet the increasing demand for its offerings from a progressively more diverse customer base.
Dipak Golechha, Excelligence Learning Corp. CEO, said, "Steve Spangler is the creative force behind innovative STEM products that engage young learners by injecting fun into the educational experience – FIZZ, BANG, WOW. Spangler is an Emmy award-winning television personality and YouTube celebrity who first taught millions how to turn a roll of Mentos and a bottle of soda into an erupting soda geyser. We're delighted to welcome Steve and Renee to the Excelligence family and are confident that Steve's demonstrated passion and drive to make science fun will continue to inspire the next generation of scientists and engineers."
Steve Spangler added, "Renee and I are excited about the opportunity to partner with Really Good Stuff, combining our innovative portfolio of STEM products and powerful media presence with Really Good Stuff's deep penetration in elementary schools to drive the awareness and growth of Steve Spangler Science." This partnership will give Spangler an even greater opportunity to create large-scale science experiences and continue his work as a leading STEM influencer online and on television.
Tim Kochuba, Really Good Stuff President, noted, "We're thrilled to partner with one of the top thought leaders in STEM education, enabling Really Good Stuff to catapult over the competition in one of the fastest growing educational categories with a leading brand that is positioned at the intersection of STEM education and play."
About Steve Spangler Science
Founded in 1994 by Steve and Renee Spangler, Steve Spangler Science (www.SteveSpanglerScience.com) and Spangler Science Club, a hands-on STEM kit-of-the-month club, provide direct-to-consumer STEM-related educational content and products designed to help teachers and parents create innovative learning experiences to inspire the next generation of scientists and engineers. Headquartered in Denver, Colorado, Steve Spangler Science is home to one of the most robust collections of science experiments and STEM project ideas online today that integrate multiple disciplines in the learning experience. Steve Spangler utilizes his innovative products to provide outstanding professional development for teachers through multiple channels, including on-site hands-on science workshops, summer STEM institutes, large-scale events and an online training portal.
ChildCare Education Institute and Frog Street Announce a Partnership to Introduce a New Texas Child Care Administration and Business Practices Certificate
Duluth, GA, March 14, 2018 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- ChildCare Education Institute® (CCEI), an online child care training provider dedicated exclusively to the early care and education workforce, and Frog Street, a provider of comprehensive early childhood education solutions for children ages 0-5 to public schools, Head Start programs and early child care centers, announce a collaboration from an unparalleled partnership to collectively impact child care administration and business practices training throughout the State of Texas by offering a new Texas Child Care Administration and Business Practices Certificate.
The Texas Child Care Administration and Business Practices Certificate is a 100 clock hour program designed to provide professional information for early childhood professionals seeking to further their skills and knowledge in the management of a child care center. It is a comprehensive course related to child care business and administration, designed to strengthen business practices, and provide improved quality of child care services.
The program is comprised of six online instructional units and face-to-face coaching sessions that focus on the core areas of competency required to effectively administer and manage a child care center. The coaching sessions are designed to allow participants to demonstrate practical application of the concepts learned throughout the program and each participant will culminate their learning with an executable quality improvement plan that they can take back to their centers.
Upon satisfactorily completing the Texas Child Care Administration and Business Practices Certificate program of study, students will be able to:
· Demonstrate advanced business administration and organizational skills specific to the child care industry;
· Demonstrate the ability to develop leadership skills;
· Recognize indicators of quality care, including the TRS program indicators of effectiveness;
· Identify methods to maintain a skilled, well-trained workforce;
· Identify methods to create a positive and productive workplace;
· Identify methods to partner with parents to engage families in the early learning and development of children
The Texas Child Care Administration and Business Practices Certificate program is provided at no cost to eligible providers. Priority of enrollment is given to employees of 3- and 4-Star rated TRS providers, and then employees of 2-Star TRS rated providers.
The Texas Child Care Administration and Business Practices Certificate program is being offered to child care management and staff who are employed and recommended by eligible Texas Rising Star (TRS) child care providers, including but not limited to owners, directors, managers, supervisors, and their staff selected by the child care center director, for whom administrative, managerial, or supervisory duties comprise a minimum of 50% of their workload.
“A partnership with Frog Street to bring the Texas Child Care Administration and Business Practices Certificate program to child care providers in the state of Texas was a natural fit,” says Maria C. Taylor, President and CEO of CCEI. “We are delighted to introduce this certificate program at no-cost to eligible providers, who can use it to sharpen their own management skills or train up and coming management employees.”
“CCEI offers best-in-class online training to administrators and educators”, said Ron Chase, CEO of Frog Street. “Coupled with Frog Street’s commitment to high quality professional development, this unique opportunity provides administrators with the ability to further develop their skillset without a financial burden.”
Innovative Educational Products Company Really Good Stuff Awards $4,500 Grand Prize in Its 25th Anniversary Summer of Fun Giveaway
Monroe, CT Company Awards Over 10,000 Prizes to Teachers Nationwide
MONTEREY, Calif., March 20, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- Really Good Stuff, a subsidiary of Excelligence Learning Corporation, a leading provider of educational tools and solutions to early childhood and elementary teachers and parents, closed out its 25th anniversary celebration by traveling to Grants Pass, Oregon to award the Grand Prize in its Summer of Fun Giveaway to Mollie Bleeker, a Pre-K grade teacher at Vineyard Christian School.
The Monroe, CT-based Company celebrated twenty-five years of providing teachers with innovative solutions designed to make a difference in the classroom with its Summer of Fun Instant Giveaway! Over 10,000 prizes were awarded to the over 50,000 unique players who redeemed giveaway codes throughout the summer. The fun culminated when Tim Kochuba, Really Good Stuff's President, traveled to Grants Pass, Oregon to award the grand prize which consisted of a $1,500 Visa®Gift Card for Mollie PLUS $3,000 worth of Really Good Stuff® for both Mollie's classroom and her school.
From the beginning, the company's mission has been to help teachers make a difference in the classroom. Starting in 2008, Really Good Stuff has also worked to make a difference beyond the classroom by reducing its carbon footprint. The company installed solar panels and energy efficient lighting at its main headquarters, instituted a company-wide recycling policy, and uses sustainable resources when possible.
Other highlights in Really Good Stuff's 25-year history include the establishment of a District and School Administrator unit in 2012, offering products in bulk and customizing packages to supply entire schools or districts. It joined the Excelligence family of companies in early 2016.
Dipak Golechha, Excelligence Learning Corp. CEO, said, "We're fortunate to have joined forces with Really Good Stuff at such a momentous time in its history. With the combined resources of our Supplies Division and our shared dedication to innovation and customer satisfaction, I look forward with enthusiasm to what the next 25 years will bring."
Kochuba noted, "We initiated the Summer of Fun Giveaway as a way to say 'thank you' to the tens of thousands of amazing teachers nationwide that helped Really Good Stuff achieve this important milestone. At Really Good Stuff, we know that teachers often reach into their own pockets to acquire classroom essentials, and we wanted to show our appreciation by giving back in a fun and creative way."
About Really Good Stuff®
Founded in 1992, Really Good Stuff (www.reallygoodstuff.com) works side-by-side with educators to create high quality and affordable products that provide teachers, primarily in grades K-8, with innovative solutions designed to make a difference in students' lives. Today, through its catalogs and website, the company offers more than 7,500 items, including everything from classroom organization solutions such as bins, baskets & bookcases to fun educational activities in language arts, numeracy and STEM, introducing over 500 new products annually.
Early Childhood Teachers Can Spend More Time Teaching and Less Time Planning As Discount School Supply Expands Solution Kit Teachers Now Have An Increased Variety Of Physical And Cognitive Activities To Help Deliver Age Specific Outcomes, While Saving Prep Time
MONTEREY, Calif., March 5, 2018 /Cision/ -- Over 50 years of academic research has proven time and again, that high-quality early childhood education has an extraordinary long-term impact on a child’s future academic and life success. Every minute of teaching time then is critical. The more time teachers spend teaching – and less time researching and developing lesson plans and gathering materials – the more children benefit.
Discount School Supply (www.discountschoolsupply.com), the preeminent supplier of early childhood educational products in the USA and 40 countries, announced an expansion of its timesaving quality learning solution kits, that provide a variety of physical and cognitive activities to help teachers deliver specific outcomes, while substantially saving prep time.
“If you step into a preschool you’ll see teachers are in constant motion. They’ve told us they need more time-saving solutions so they can spend more time teaching,” said Cathy Adams, Discount School Supply’s Senior Vice President of Merchandising. “We’ve developed these solution kits around various learning areas with each kit including the tools, materials, and activity plans teachers need. The activity guides provide for multiple ways to use the kits over and over. And the stackable storage bins keep the solution kit contents organized.”
57 solution kits supporting these nine critical learning areas, are included in the March 2018 edition of Discount School Supply’s highly regarded early childhood education reference book:
· Outdoor Play: These kits enable teachers to expand their curriculum to outdoor environments by providing a variety of materials for hands-on learning.
· Active Play: These kits support children as they explore movement skills in a number of ways.
· Science and Nature: These kits help teachers guide their curious students through exploration and experimenting.
· Social and Emotional: These kits contain the tools and activities needed to support the social and emotional development of young children, and develop skills necessary for school and life.
· Language and Math: These kits help children develop basic foundational skills to support early childhood success.
· Room Solutions: These solutions help educators create classroom spaces that support healthy interaction among children, staff and parents.
· Family Engagement: These kits enable parents to keep learning going outside of the classroom, and increase quality time with their children.
· Curriculum: These kits provide curriculum support materials and supplies for the industry leading Frog Street learning programs.
· Arts and Crafts: These kits are designed to help teachers grow the fine motor skills and encourage open-ended creativity.
“Our solution kits provide convenient, quality, ready answers to help today’s busy early childhood education teachers spend more time teaching and helping children thrive,” said Dipak Golechha, Chief Executive Officer of Excelligence Learning, the parent organization of Discount School Supply. “This expansion of solution kits is part of our relentless commitment to offer early childhood education teachers the best developmentally appropriate products and services, at the best prices, that help advance a child’s physical and cognitive skills.”
ChildCare Education Institute is Honored to Earn the CDA Gold Standard℠
Duluth, GA / January 4, 2018 - On December 19, 2017, ChildCare Education Institute (CCEI) was awarded the Comprehensive CDA Gold Standard℠ following a quality review of their training and student services by the Council for Professional Recognition (the Council). The CDA Gold Standard℠ is part of the Council’s early childhood education effort to help CDA students find the high-quality training and student services they need in preparation for the CDA exam and a career as early childhood educators.
“As the industry leader for online professional development training for over 12 years, we are honored to be recognized by The Council for Professional Recognition and awarded the coveted Comprehensive CDA Gold Standard℠ for our high-quality curriculum and exemplary student services,” said Maria C. Taylor, President and CEO of ChildCare Education Institute.
As a participant in the CDA Gold Standard℠ pilot, ChildCare Education Institute successfully demonstrated that its early childhood education training is based on the Council’s three industry-leading principles:
1. Alignment with the CDA formal education coursework found in the CDA’s Eight Subject Areas.
2. Sound business policies and practices.
3. Quality student services that meet their educational and professional needs.
“We believe that our new CDA Gold Standard℠ adds value and integrity to the early childhood profession by verifying connections between the Council’s proven teacher competencies and the quality of training resources available to CDA students,” said Valora Washington, chief executive officer, Council for Professional Recognition.
In addition to offering high-quality training, CDA Gold Standard applicants must provide evidence that they serve the CDA student community with excellence, which includes professional development that prepares students for successful completion of their training program.
“It’s exciting to think about the many young children, families, and communities that will benefit from the high-quality education and training students will receive from ChildCare Education Institute, a CDA Gold Standard℠ organization,” Washington added.
For more information, visit www.cceionline.edu or call 1.800.499.9907, prompt 3, Monday - Friday, 8 a.m. - 5 p.m. EST
Really Good Stuff Partners With Fingerprint To Provide Digital Learning Products For Early Childhood And Elementary Learners
Offerings Will Allow Teachers and Parents to Target, Monitor and Track Learning Against Established Educational Goals
MONTEREY, Calif., Dec. 20, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- Excelligence Learning Corporation, a leading provider of educational tools and solutions to early childhood and elementary teachers and parents announced Really Good Stuff, headquartered in Monroe, CT, has partnered with San Francisco, CA-based Fingerprint, a leading global provider of kids' digital learning and play content, to provide a branded Mobile Content Platform with over 200 learning apps for children ages 3-8 years old. The partnership brings together Fingerprint's demonstrated ability to source, curate and merchandise high-quality digital learning apps with Really Good Stuff's 86% penetration of the nation's elementary schools. The new products which will be launched for back-to-school 2018, will be mapped to common core/state educational standards, and will be available in the classroom, to individual students and in the home.
Dipak Golechha, Excelligence Learning Corp. President, said, "Through this partnership with Fingerprint, Really Good Stuff will have the ability to offer a comprehensive, supplemental curriculum experience for kids ages 3-8 through a curated content library. It will be easy for teachers and parents to select high-quality educational games, books and videos that are tied to common core/state educational standards. Moreover, the platform delivers on a need not met in the marketplace today, giving teachers and parents the ability to search and filter apps to target the learning experience and then view the student's usage and progress."
Nancy MacIntyre, co-founder and CEO of Fingerprint, noted, "Our mission has always been to find and share the very best learning content – whether video, books or games. This partnership allows Fingerprint to marry its proprietary end-to-end multi-platform technology solution with Really Good Stuff's 86% penetration in elementary schools, deepening our ability to reach into schools and homes with a fun learning experience." Tim Kochuba, General Manager of Really Good Stuff, added, "Fingerprint's rigorous process for identifying and evaluating content that meets learning objectives, while providing teachers and parents the ability to monitor and track progress, will allow Really Good Stuff to offer a unique digital learning experience that is aligned with our mission to help teachers make a difference in the classroom."
Excelligence was advised by Tyton Partners.
Fingerprint is a leading global provider of digital content for kids and families. The San Francisco-based mobile technology company creates custom kids' learning platforms and curates content for customers around the world. Industry leaders in technology, edutainment, broadcast and more license Fingerprint's technology platform and use their content solutions to serve up customized branded mobile networks that help them better connect with mobile families in a kid-safe and meaningful way. Fingerprint is funded by leading media and technology investors including Corus Entertainment, DreamWorks Animation, Reed Elsevier Ventures, Trinity Capital Investment and GSV. For more information, visit fingerprintplay.com or facebook.com/FingerprintPlay.
Excelligence Learning Corp. Breaks Ground In Gardner, KS
Supplies Division Consolidation Planned In 650,000 SF Facility
MONTEREY, Calif., Dec. 18, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- Excelligence Learning Corporation, a leading provider of educational tools and solutions to early childhood and elementary teachers and parents broke ground earlier this week, marking construction on a $38 Million 650,000 square foot facility planned for the Midwest Commerce Center in Gardner, Kansas. The new facility, which is expected to be completed by year-end 2018, will house all manufacturing and distribution, as well as a call center operation, for the Company's Supplies Division businesses, Discount School Supply and Really Good Stuff.
In late November, the Company announced the closing of its Jacksonville, FL paint manufacturing facility, as well as its Discount School Supply distribution centers in Kansas City, KS and Harrisburg, PA and its Really Good Stuff distribution center in Kansas City, MO. The consolidation of Really Good Stuff's Monroe, CT distribution center into its Kansas City facility had been announced previously. The consolidation of facilities and closures is not expected to be fully completed until early 2019.
Dipak Golechha, Excelligence Learning Corp. President noted, "Monday's ground-breaking was an important milestone in achieving the single site network strategy that will facilitate the investment in technology, automation and streamlined processes that are critical to meeting the changing needs of our customers. Moreover, operating from one state-of-the art facility will enhance customer service, improve operating efficiency and enable the integration of future acquisitions."
Rob Tecco, VP of Distribution & Logistics for the Supplies Division added, "We're delighted to embark on this important initiative in the city of Gardner, an attractive employment market, where we expect to employ approximately 250 people by the end of the first three years. In addition, by consolidating our paint manufacturing in this centrally-located warehouse, we will be able to optimize delivery time to our customers across the U.S. and overseas."
Really Good Stuff Launches “Kids Care & Share” Product Line To Promote Service Learning
Sales To Benefit Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation for Childhood Cancer®
MONTEREY, Calif., Sept. 19, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- Excelligence Learning Corp.’s Really Good Stuff business unit has launched an initiative to help teachers engage students in community outreach and service learning. Developed primarily for elementary school students, the Kids Care & Share™ line of Ready-To-Decorate® kits makes it easy for children to create a personalized gift for someone in the community as a way to either show they care, or appreciate their contributions to the community. Creating a special gift for someone in an elder care facility, hospital or homeless shelter will encourage these youngsters to demonstrate charitable behavior towards others. Similarly, saying “thanks” to people in the community, such as a police officer, firefighter or librarian, with a special gift will teach the social awareness that leads to community involvement as they learn why those jobs are so important in their communities.
Commenting on the Kids Care & Share kits, Really Good Stuff General Manager Tim Kochuba noted, “For 25 years, Really Good Stuff has been creating innovative products to help teachers make a difference in students’ lives. We believe that by working on these type of projects, teachers will be helping their students develop good character traits that will endure into their futures.”
Excelligence Learning President, Dipak Golechha, added “Really Good Stuff has long been dedicated to helping teachers make a difference by creating innovative tools for the classroom. With the introduction of Kids Care & Share, it’s now helping teachers make community outreach and engagement central to the lives of their students.”
A portion of the proceeds from each kit goes to Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation (alexslemonade.org), an organization that has encouraged and empowered countless children to get involved and make a difference for children with cancer. Started as an actual lemonade stand by an inspirational young cancer patient, Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation has raised more than $150 million to fund much-needed childhood cancer research. Kids Care & Share kits are available now at www.kidscareandshare.net and are featured in catalogs that will be in-home October 2nd.
Excelligence Learning's Frog Street Partners with ABCmouse for Schools To Bring Leading Digital Learning Resource to Pre-K and Head Start Programs
MONTEREY, Calif., Sept. 14, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- Frog Street, a provider of comprehensive early childhood education solutions for children ages 0-5 and portfolio company within Excelligence Learning Corporation, has entered into a partnership with Age of Learning®, a leading education technology innovator and producer of the award-winning and research-validated ABCmouse.com® Early Learning Academy. This partnership aligns ABCmouse early childhood learning activities with Frog Street's research-based Pre-K curriculum. With a primary focus on publicly-funded Pre-K and Head Start programs, Frog Street will initiate distribution of ABCmouse for Schools this Fall.
ABCmouse for Schools provides young learners, their families and teachers with a comprehensive, supplementary curriculum that includes thousands of highly engaging and effective digital learning activities. "ABCmouse for Schools brings the full breadth and quality of ABCmouse Early Learning Academy to the classroom, enabling teachers, schools and districts to implement ABCmouse with fidelity and maximize learning outcomes," said Zachary Katz, Age of Learning's Senior Vice President, Corporate Development. "We welcome the opportunity to partner with a leader in core early childhood curriculum, expanding access to ABCmouse in Pre-K and Head Start programs."
Frog Street provides curricular programs with intentional, age-appropriate instruction that is based on scientific research on child development and aligned to both federal and state standards, equipping early childhood educators with best-in-class solutions. Commenting on the partnership with Age of Learning, Dipak Golechha, Excelligence Learning Corp. President, noted, "We welcome the opportunity to align with such a strong early childhood curriculum and brand as we focus on growing our presence in the Early Childhood services sector." Ron Chase, CEO of Frog Street, added, "Age of Learning and Excelligence share the same passion for making a difference in the lives of children. This alliance strengthens Frog Street's technology offerings while supporting its strategy to deepen family engagement by pairing its comprehensive curriculum with a research-validated digital offering that drives significant positive outcomes for children."
About Age of Learning
Founded in 2007, Age of Learning is a leading education technology innovator and producer of the multi-award-winning ABCmouse.com Early Learning Academy, which serves millions of children. Age of Learning's content provides young learners, their families and teachers with highly engaging and effective learning tools and a comprehensive curriculum that build a strong foundation for academic success. Recognized as the top digital learning resource for children ages 2–8, ABCmouse is regularly ranked as a leading iPad, iPhone and Android app in both the Education and Kids categories. A growing body of research shows that regular use of ABCmouse accelerates learning and helps children make significant gains in early literacy and math skills.
Age of Learning for Schools, Inc., an Age of Learning subsidiary, launched ABCmouse for Schools (www.ABCmouseforSchools.com) in 2016 to meet the needs of schools and school districts. ABCmouse for Schools incorporates the ABCmouse curriculum in to an enterprise solution that includes curriculum alignment, student management, professional development and progress reporting tools.
CCEI Offers No-Cost Online Course Examining the Process of Launching Learning Centers in Your Classroom
ChildCare Education Institute® (CCEI), an online child care training provider dedicated exclusively to the early care and education workforce, offers CCEI450A: Launching Learning Centers in Your Classroom as a no-cost trial course to new CCEI users during the month of August. DULUTH, GEORGIA (PRWEB) AUGUST 02, 2017
ChildCare Education Institute® (CCEI), an online child care training provider dedicated exclusively to the early care and education workforce, offers CCEI450A: Launching Learning Centers in Your Classroom as a no-cost trial course to new CCEI users during the month of August.
A learning center is a designated space in the classroom where children, in small groups or as individuals, engage in a specific activity. The use of learning centers allows teachers to focus on individual students’ needs and interests while maintaining effective management over the classroom. The use of a variety of learning centers is now a widespread and commonly accepted practice in early childhood classrooms. The developmentally appropriate classroom should be filled with equipment and materials that encourage children to explore, ask questions, solve problems, and gain knowledge by interacting with the world around them.
This course examines the process of establishing and enhancing learning centers in an early childhood education setting. Upon successful completion of this course, students should be able to list common learning centers found in an early childhood classroom and identify the requirements for evaluating and adjusting each classroom center to ensure the appropriateness for young children.
“Organizing the classroom around the use of learning centers is a great way to help children develop a passion for learning while accomplishing curriculum objectives and developing new skills," says Maria C. Taylor, President and CEO of CCEI. “While it is important to put time into planning and organizing a learning center, it is more important to remember to observe children closely in order to determine their interests and skill levels. Centers should provide appropriate challenges for all children. We’re pleased to offer CCEI450A as a no-cost trial course for the month of August just in time for back-to-school!”
CCEI450A: Launching Learning Centers in Your Classroom is a one-hour, beginner-level course and grants 0.1 IACET CEU upon successful completion. Current CCEI users with active, unlimited annual subscriptions can register for professional development courses at no additional cost when logged in to their CCEI account. Users without subscriptions can purchase child care training courses as block hours through CCEI online enrollment.
ChildCare Education Institute® provides high-quality, distance education certificates and child care training programs in an array of child care settings, including preschool centers, family child care, prekindergarten classrooms, nanny care, online daycare training and more. Over 100 English and Spanish child care training courses are available online to meet licensing, recognition program, and Head
Start Requirements. CCEI also has online certification programs that provide the coursework requirement for national credentials including the CDA, Director and Early Childhood Credentials. CCEI is nationally accredited by the Distance Education Accrediting Commission (DEAC), is accredited as an Authorized Provider by the International Association for Continuing Education and Training (IACET), and is authorized under the Nonpublic Postsecondary Educational Institutions Act of 1990, license number 837.
Over 1 Million Students Start The School Year With EPI School Supplies
MONTEREY, Calif., July 17, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- Educational Products, Inc.(EPI), the Dallas-based division of Excelligence® Learning Corporation and the nation’s #1 provider of pre-packaged school supplies, is coordinating Back-To-School supplies programs with thousands of schools nationwide, reaching over 1 million students with school supplies customized for each school by grade. Founded over 35 years ago by Dr. Jim Stapleton, a middle school principal who thought buying school supplies should be easy, EPI ensures that everyone benefits from its pre-packaged school supplies programs: Parents save time and money on back to school shopping; Teachers can focus on teaching more effectively when all students show up prepared with consistent tools to learn; and, Parent Groups will appreciate their school and parent groups for providing this service. Plus, many groups use this as a fundraiser.
Today, EPI is a one-stop shop for parent groups and educators seeking simple solutions, providing a variety of custom apparel for any occasion, bulk classroom supplies, fund-raising and science fair products in addition to the pre-packaged school supplies for which it has become known.
Commenting on EPI’s promise to meet or exceed customer expectations on product quality, price and service, Dipak Golechha, President of Excelligence Learning, said, “EPI is dedicated to providing quality products and services that support parent groups, teachers and community organizations in its efforts to give our children the best possible tools and resources to build positive learning environment.” He further observed that, “EPI has enjoyed a loyal customer base for over 35 years, with a very high percentage of parents groups returning year after year.” Ron Phelan, EPI’s CEO, also noted that, “EPI guarantees not only the lowest prices on school supply programs, but also guarantees product quality, replacing any product that fails to meet our customer’s expectations at any time during the school year.”
About Educational Products, Inc.
Educational Products, Inc., based in Dallas, TX, provides prepackaged and bulk school supply programs, custom spirit-wear, fundraising programs and science fair supplies. It pre-packaged school supply programs offer parent groups and schools the convenience of an online portal to access its program and offers parents both online and take home order forms. The EPI Outreach program also works with non-profits, churches and corporations that sponsor school supplies for their communities. For more information about EPI, please visit www.educationalproducts.com.
New Course from CCEI Covers Program Leadership for Staff Retention and Motivation
ChildCare Education Institute® (CCEI), an online child care training provider dedicated exclusively to the early care and education workforce, is proud to introduce ADM112 - Program Leadership: Staff Retention and Motivation to the online child care training course catalog.
Staff retention is one of the most troublesome issues facing child care centers and education related facilities today. In fact, child care centers have some of the highest employee turnover rates of any industry in the United States. A high employee turnover rate can add layers of stress to a manager’s job. Rather than focusing on improving the quality of your education program, you could end up spending too many hours on recruiting, interviewing, and training staff, not to mention dealing with the personnel issues that arise when your staff members are not used to working together.
Research has shown that young children who experience frequent teacher turnover can have serious delays in social and cognitive development. Children are impressionable and they naturally want to bond and establish trust with their caregivers. Break those bonds too often and there may be negative outcomes for the child.
Unfortunately, there is no simple, magical formula for motivating employees. In fact, staff motivation and retention are common issues in all industries. It just so happens that they present slightly bigger issues in the child care and education industry.
“Employees are much more likely to feel motivated when they are part of an organization with effective, dedicated leadership. An organization’s success begins with its leadership," says Maria C. Taylor, President and CEO of CCEI. “This course discusses the role that effective leadership has on staff retention and motivation.”
ADM112 - Program Leadership: Staff Retention and Motivation is a two-hour, intermediate-level course and grants 0.2 IACET CEU upon successful completion. Current CCEI users with active, unlimited annual subscriptions can register for professional development courses at no additional cost when logged in to their CCEI account. Users without subscriptions can purchase child care training courses as block hours through CCEI online enrollment.
For more information, visit www.cceionline.edu or call 1.800.499.9907, prompt 3, Monday - Friday, 8 a.m. - 5 p.m. EST
Educational Supplier Really Good Stuff Celebrates 25th Anniversary With Summer Of Fun Giveaway To Thank Teachers
MONTEREY, Calif., July 13, 2017 /PRNewswire/ --To mark 25 years of supplying teachers with creative classroom tools, Really Good Stuff, LLC, the Monroe, CT-based division of Excelligence Learning Corporation, is sponsoring a Summer of Fun Giveaway. The contest awards thousands of prizes to instant winners all summer long and will culminate in a drawing on October 30, 2017, for a grand prize valued at $4,500.
“The Summer of Fun Giveaway is our way of saying ‘thank you’ to all the teachers who have helped us reach this important milestone,” says Really Good Stuff General Manager Tim Kochuba.
Educators can visit www.reallygoodstuff.com/summergiveaway for a chance to win one of these prizes (no purchase necessary, see official rules for method of entry through September 30, 2017):
Grand Prize: $1,500 Visa gift card for the winner, $1,500 in Really Good Stuff® for his or her classroom, and $1,500 in Really Good Stuff® for the school
First Prize (2): Apple® MacBook Air
Second Prize (5): Apple® iPad Mini
Third Prize (250): $25 Starbucks® Gift Card
Fourth Prize (10,000): Really Good Stuff® Window Cling
From the beginning, the company’s mission has been to help teachers make a difference. Starting in 2008, Really Good Stuff has also worked to make a difference beyond the classroom by reducing its carbon footprint. The company installed solar panels and energy efficient lighting at its main headquarters, instituted a company-wide recycling policy, and uses sustainable resources when possible.
Other highlights in Really Good Stuff’s 25-year history include the establishment of a District and School Administrator unit in 2012, offering products in bulk and customizing packages to supply entire schools or districts. It joined the Excelligence family of companies in early 2016. Commenting on its partnership with Really Good Stuff, Dipak Golechha, Excelligence’s President noted, “We’re fortunate to have joined forces with Really Good Stuff at such a momentous time in its history. With the combined resources of our Supplies Division and our shared dedication to innovation and customer satisfaction, I look forward with enthusiasm to what the next 25 years will bring.”
Discount School Supply’s Donations To Head Start Approach $1 Million
MONTEREY, Calif., July 12, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- Excelligence® Learning Corporation, a leading provider of educational tools and solutions to early childhood and elementary school teachers and parents, has once again partnered, through Discount School Supply (DSS), an Excelligence company, with the National Head Start Association (NHSA) through its Dollar Per Child Campaign to provide nationwide support for the nearly one million children currently in Head Start and Early Head Start programs. Building on a nearly twenty year partnership between DSS and NHSA, this year’s donation brings the total to $950,000.
Head Start/Early Head Start has improved the lives of more than 32 million children and their families since its inception, and exemplifies the national commitment to give every child, regardless of circumstances at birth, an opportunity to succeed in school and in life. Jay Lerman, NHSA Treasurer and Director of Strategic Partnerships at Frog Street, also an Excelligence company, noted, “It is both an honor and a responsibility to work with NHSA on behalf of our country’s most vulnerable children and their families, and a privilege to represent a company that supports this work with more than just words.”
Through the Dollar Per Child campaign, which aims to raise one dollar for each of the one million vulnerable children Head Start serves each year, NHSA ensures that the voices of at-risk children and their families are heard. Dollar Per Child funds are used to amplify a unified voice, advocacy, and representation of all Head Start Children in Congress and on Capitol Hill, along with outreach and education to the public about the program.
Commenting on its long-term partnership with the NHSA, Dipak Golechha, Excelligence’s President, said, “Millions of American children have benefited from the critical window of opportunity for education success that is provided by Head Start and Early Head Start programs. Discount School Supply is proud to continue its financial support through the Dollar Per Child program and, as we approach our twentieth year in partnership, look forward to breaking through a Million Dollars and beyond.”
Modern Living With kathy ireland® Highlights Excelligence Learning Corporation As They Introduce Their Comprehensive Ways For Children To Reach Their Full Potential
MONTEREY, Calif., July 11, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- Excelligence® Learning Corporation, a leading provider of educational tools and solutions to early childhood and elementary school teachers and parents, will be featured on Modern Living with kathy ireland® with an exclusive story highlighting Excelligence's vision to become the world's most preferred provider of educational tools and solutions to early childhood teachers, elementary teachers and parents.
According to Dipak Golechha, Excelligence's CEO, "Our mission is to provide teachers and parents with the BEST brands at the BEST prices with the BEST service, helping children learn in the BEST way possible. We achieve our vision and mission through three main divisions: Supplies, Equipment and Services, providing a one-stop shop in early childhood education."
Golechha says that Excelligence Learning Corporation never stops thinking about their main goal, which is to make learning a better experience for teachers, parents and -- of course -- for children. He explains, "Teachers are some of the most passionate individuals, but they've got very limited time and pretty limited resources. So what we do at Excelligence is look at that unmet need and look at how we can make their lives a little bit easier and a little less demanding. And, we have an unrelenting focus on our end customer. We truly want to provide childhood education teachers, elementary school teachers and parents the right tools and solutions."
JL Haber, Vice President of Programming for Modern Living with kathy ireland®, is thrilled to feature Excelligence Learning Corporation. He says, "Kids today learn in so many different, unique ways. No one knows this better than Excelligence Learning Corporation. This leading company in the education industry goes above and beyond to provide the best products and services for teachers, administrators and parents everywhere. And the people who really benefit are the kids. We're delighted to feature Excelligence Learning Corporation on our show."
For more information about Excelligence Learning Corporation, visit www.Excelligence.com and tune in to WE tv as sponsored programming on Thursday, July 13, 2017 at 7:30am EST.
Modern Living with kathy ireland® is a weekly business television program featuring real-world insights from corporate executives from all over the globe. Modern Living with kathy ireland® airs throughout North America on WE tv as part of their sponsored programming lineup and to over 50 countries throughout the world on Sundays on Bloomberg International as part of their sponsored programming lineup.
Frog Street To Host Annual SPLASH™ Conference Honoring Heroes In Early Childhood Education
MONTEREY, Calif., July 10, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- Dallas, Texas-based Frog Street, the latest addition to the Excelligence® Learning Corporation family of companies, will be hosting the SPLASH 2017 "Be A Hero" Conference July 13-15 at the Gaylord Texan Resort and Convention Center. SPLASH™ is a unique professional learning experience and celebration in honor of all heroes in early childhood education. Internationally recognized keynote speakers, professional consultants, expert classroom teachers, musicians and entertainers from around the world will come together to create a truly unforgettable learning experience. Excelligence Learning Corporation is a leading provider of educational tools and solutions to early childhood and elementary school teachers and parents.
Commenting on the upcoming conference, Dipak Golechha, Excelligence's President noted, "SPLASH is a time for like-minded educators to collaborate, incubating new ideas and recharging for the upcoming school year. This year's conference is packed with sessions designed to present cutting-edge strategies and the latest research-based educational trends to enhance the classroom and improve student performance."
Keynote speakers for SPLASH 2017 include:
Jon Gordon, best-selling author and motivational speaker who has inspired readers and audiences around the world.
Dr. Becky Bailey, award-winning author, renowned teacher and internationally recognized expert in childhood education and developmental psychology.
Debbie Silver, speaker/author/humorist who brings heartfelt insight and trademark candor to audience members all over the world.
Dr. Marcia Tate, former executive director of professional development, classroom teacher, reading specialist, and language arts coordinator.
LaVonna Roth – creator & Founder of "Ignite Your S.H.I.N.E.®" challenges educators to find out how to ignite the S.H.I.N.E. in their students, others and self.
Ron Chase, Frog Street CEO added, "We're especially pleased to have such a distinguished panel of speakers lined up for what will be our most highly attended conference ever. In addition to these keynotes, over 40 other featured speakers will bring fresh new ideas and approaches to take back to the classroom and re-energize teaching." On this year's roster of speakers are many well-known and beloved experts in early childhood education, including Dr. Kenneth Wesson, Dr. Pam Schiller, Mary Jo Huff, Dr. Ray Reutzel, Dr. Mike Longoria, Cleo Rodriguez, Debbie Clement, Kim Adsit, Dan Romain, Jim Gill, Dr. Marianne Gibbs, and many more.
SPLASH kicks off Thursday, July 13 with a full day of Pre-Conference activities and in-depth training workshops, followed by the Opening Concert celebration. Two main General Sessions on Friday and Saturday include a host of entertainers and live performances, including MC Stephen Fite, Don Monopoli of the Learning Station, Shawn Brown of the Super Fun Show and more. A celebration dinner in the Gaylord's Grand Texas Ballroom on Friday evening features a five-star chef-inspired banquet meal, themed ballroom and table décor, the Chinatown Band, door prizes and more.
For more information on SPLASH, including the full list of presenters, session titles, content descriptions, and conference grid, visit www.frogstreet.com/SPLASH.
Excelligence Learning Corporation Acquires Frog Street Press, Inc.
MONTEREY, Calif., Excelligence Learning Corporation, a leading provider of educational tools and solutions to early childhood and elementary school teachers and parents, has acquired Frog Street Press, Inc. Frog Street, headquartered in Dallas, Texas, is a leading provider of comprehensive early childhood education solutions for children of ages 0 – 5 years to public schools, Head Start programs and early child care centers.
Excelligence's vision is to become the world's most preferred provider of educational tools and solutions to early childhood and elementary teachers and parents. This is achieved through a commitment to its mission – to provide teachers and parents with the BEST brands at the BEST prices with the BEST service. Headquartered in Monterey, California, Excelligence serves its vision and mission through three main divisions: Supplies, Equipment, and Services.
Dipak Golechha, President & COO, noted, "Frog Street is positively impacting the next generation of children by equipping educators with research-based curriculum and best-in-class professional learning. We're delighted to bring such an industry leader into the Excelligence family as we deliver on our key strategic priority to grow our offering in the early childhood sector."
Frog Street is led by CEO Ron Chase, who will continue to lead the business going forward. Commenting on the transaction, Chase said, "Joining the Excelligence portfolio of companies provides Frog Street the opportunity to increase its market and customer awareness well beyond its core Texas geography. We believe the existing relationships that Discount School Supply and Really Good Stuff have with our target customers will allow us to reach significantly more of the early childhood programs that combine purchased curriculum with internally developed resources."
This continues an active period of acquisitions for Excelligence, having added ChildCare Education Institute to its portfolio of brands earlier this year, as well as Really Good Stuff and Children's Factory in 2016. In December of 2014, Brentwood Associates, a leading consumer-focused private equity investment firm, and its affiliates, acquired a majority stake in Excelligence.
Eric Reiter, a partner at Brentwood Associates, commented, "We look forward to working with Ron and his leadership team to expand Frog Street's market penetration, building on a content creation and development process that is led by experts and thought-leaders in early childhood education. Frog Street's strong brand reputation is a result of its customers' confidence in the capabilities
of its offerings to meet the needs of early childhood programs. Moreover, its investments in curriculum implementation and professional development are well aligned with key market trends driving quality early childhood education programs."
Frog Street was advised by Signal Hill and represented by Gardere Wynne Sewell LLP. Excelligence was advised by Tyton Partners and represented by Burr & Forman LLP.
Excelligence Learning Corporation Acquires ChildCare Education Institute (CCEI)
MONTEREY, Calif., Excelligence Learning Corporation, a leading provider of educational tools and solutions to early childhood and elementary school teachers and parents, has acquired ChildCare Education Institute (CCEI). CCEI, headquartered in Duluth, Ga., is a leading provider of online professional development and data systems for the early child care and education market. CCEI represents a key addition to Excelligence’s Services division, which is focused on providing high value services to early childhood learning centers, elementary schools and PTAs.
Excelligence’s vision is to become the world’s most preferred provider of educational tools and solutions to early childhood and elementary teachers and parents. This is achieved through a commitment to its mission – to provide teachers and parents with the BEST brands at the BEST prices with the BEST service. Headquartered in Monterey, Calif., Excelligence serves its vision and mission through three main divisions: Supplies, Equipment, and Services.
Dipak Golechha, President & COO, noted, “Growing our presence in the services sector of the early care and education industry is a key strategic priority for Excelligence. We’re delighted to bring an industry leader into the Excelligence family and to the customers that rely on us to deliver the best solutions to meet their needs.”
CCEI is led by CEO Maria Taylor, who will continue to lead the business going forward. Commenting on the transaction, Taylor said, “CCEI is excited to be a part of the Excelligence family. For the past 12 years, CCEI has provided educators with quality professional development and database systems. We look forward to continuing this commitment with a partner who shares our vision of quality and service.”
This continues an active period of acquisitions for Excelligence, having added Really Good Stuff and Children’s Factory to its portfolio of brands in 2016. In December of 2014, Brentwood Associates, a leading consumer-focused private equity investment firm, and its affiliates, acquired a majority stake in Excelligence.
Eric Reiter, a partner at Brentwood Associates, commented, “We look forward to working with Maria and her leadership team to build upon their impressive success and the sterling reputation they have established within the professional development and education market. We expect the resources available within the Excelligence platform will facilitate investments in product development and marketing, allowing CCEI to further grow its base of highly satisfied customers.”
CCEI was advised by Parchman, Vaughan & Company, LLC and represented by Taylor English Duma LLP. Excelligence was advised by Tyton Partners and represented by Burr & Forman LLP and Kirkland & Ellis LLP.
Dipak Golechha Named President and COO of Excelligence Learning Corporation
MONTEREY, Calif., Dipak Golechha has been named President and Chief Operating Officer of Excelligence Learning Corporation, a leading provider of educational products and teaching solutions for the early childhood, elementary school and consumer markets. Organized around three core operating divisions – Supplies, Equipment and Services – and commanding over 30 years of experience serving children, educators and parents, Excelligence delivers a comprehensive selection of quality and innovative products and services on a global scale.
In his new role, Golechha will be responsible for all aspects of operations, including brand strategy, product development and sourcing, merchandising, marketing, sales, and distribution, and will lead the implementation of Excelligence’s strategic and operational plans. The company’s three divisions will report to Golechha and he will report to the Board of Directors.
Golechha joins Excelligence after spending the past two years as Chief Financial Officer at NBTY Inc., the world’s largest manufacturer of vitamins, minerals and health supplements. Prior to his NBTY experience, he spent 18 years at Procter & Gamble in a variety of global leadership and executive roles, including the last five years as Divisional Chief Financial Officer/Chief Operating Officer. He has both a B.A. and M.A. in Economics from the St. John’s College at Cambridge University.
Commenting on his new role, Golechha said, "The spirit with which this enterprise was founded and the expertise developed over the last 30 years in serving educators and parents are both incredibly relevant today. I see significant opportunities to build upon our diverse product assortment to extend our reach with early childhood and elementary teachers and parents. I am thrilled to be joining the Excelligence team and plan to help accelerate the growth of our proprietary brands by both increasing the current distribution footprint and investing in the company's go-to-market efforts."
Founded in 1985 and headquartered in Monterey, Calif., Excelligence is a developer, manufacturer, distributor and multi-channel retailer of leading brands of educational products and teaching solutions to early childhood and elementary school teachers, PTAs and parents. The company’s portfolio of branded products, over 50% of which within the Supplies and Equipment divisions are proprietary (such as Colorations, BioColor and Excellerations), provide customers with a one-stop solution for all of their classroom needs. Excelligence operates across all 50 states in the U.S. and has several international distributors across six continents. In addition to its core domestic growth, the company has been highly acquisitive, adding Really Good Stuff and Children’s Factory to its portfolio of brands over the last 12 months. In December of 2014, Brentwood Associates, a leading consumer-focused private equity investment firm, and its affiliates acquired a majority stake in Excelligence.
Eric Reiter, a partner at Brentwood Associates, said of the appointment, "Dipak has extensive executive level experience across diverse operating functions which makes him an ideal leader for the enterprise. He has a successful track record building great teams and his expertise will play a critical role in developing and executing key growth strategies."
Keith Gordon, Executive Chairman, added, “Dipak is a natural fit. In many ways, he personifies the Excelligence brands and embodies our core values. This, coupled with his considerable knowledge of growing and professionalizing world-class organizations, makes him a perfect choice to lead Excelligence in its next stage of exciting growth."