March 25, 2019
Heejae Lim, founder of TalkingPoints, an app that translates text messages from educators into a parent’s home language, likes to tell a story of a San Francisco middle school principal. The administrator wanted to connect with the parents of a Spanish-speaking student at risk of failing. He tried visiting the family at home twice, to no avail. He turned to the TalkingPoints app, sending a text message — which was translated into Spanish — and received an instant response, starting a dialogue between school administrators and this family that had never before existed.
February 7, 2019
Enabling a young mother to access essential nutrition benefits over text. Activating a high schooler’s passion for voting rights through digital engagement campaigns. Every day, nonprofit organizations create innovative communication solutions to reach people where they are and deliver services central to their programs. Twilio.org partners with social impact organizations around the world to build and scale these life changing communications.
October 23, 2018
One in four children in the United States is born to an immigrant family, according to the Casey Foundation, and there will be 40 million children born to immigrant or underserved families by 2030. These children are becoming one of the fastest growing student demographics, with states in the South and Southeast seeing the number of English Language Learner students double year after year. Yet school systems, educators, and communities are not adequately prepared or resourced for this pace of change.
October 10, 2018
Utah-based Pluralsight’s Create the Future Awards recognize companies changing the world for the better. We met two of them: one teaches tech skills to human-trafficking victims, while another helps bridge language barriers between parents and teachers.
August 29, 2018
TalkingPoints is a nonprofit, and our mission is to unlock the potential of low-income, immigrant families in the U.S. to be able to support their children’s learning.
June 22, 2018
Language and cultural barriers are familiar ground to me. As a Korean who grew up in England and then moved to the US, I’ve encountered plenty of challenges in cultural and language translation. But today I’m becoming less and less of an anomaly. Minorities will make up more than 50% of the United States population by 2020.
June 21, 2018
TalkingPoints is an education technology nonprofit working to make it easy for any parent to be engaged in their children’s education—especially in low-income, diverse communities. Through a parent education platform with human- and AI-powered translation, we help teachers and parents communicate, build relationships, and understand what effective parent engagement looks like.
Oct 12th, 2017
Strong parent-teacher partnerships are key to student success in the classroom. In fact, parental engagement is very effective at predicting student achievement. When teachers and parents are in regular contact about students’ needs, progress, and successes, students feel supported and motivated to try their best in school.
Aug 30th, 2017
As a parent, I can’t even begin to describe how important I think home to school/school to home communication is for my sanity and my child’s success. My son is a bit of a mad scientist, which is all well and good, but have you seen the inside of a mad scientist’s backpack?
Aug 14th, 2017
The following piece is based on a conversation we recently had with Heejae Lim, Founder and Executive Director of TalkingPoints. As a Korean immigrant student, Heejae saw first-hand the difference between her friends with English-speaking parents who were deeply engaged in their education versus non-English speaking parents who struggled to be involved.
June 22nd, 2017
Predictions for the potential of artificial intelligence wax poetic — solutions from climate change to curing disease — but the everyday applications make it seem far more mundane, like a glorified clock radio.
May 2nd, 2017
Kids growing up in low-income neighborhoods have always faced extra challenges when it comes to keeping up with their middle- to high-income peers. And with the dawning of the digital age, low-income students now face a new, unprecedented challenge: access to high-speed internet.
Jan 27th, 2017
We’ve all heard the theory that the most successful businesses have one thing in common: They identify a problem that people have and they solve it. If only it were that simple.
Dec 15th, 2016
Amanda Roman, an English as a second language teacher in Elmsford, used to have to translate handwritten Spanish notes from students’ parents for her colleagues.
Nov 22nd, 2016
Last week, The NewSchools Venture Fund announced the winners of a funding competition designed to find the best edtech tools that are helping English Language Learners (ELLs) learn.
Nov 16th, 2016
Last year, in several separate conversations with educators, the subject of tools for English Language Learners (ELLs) came up. We discussed it as a team, and wondered if it was a trend we should be paying closer attention to.
Oct 25th, 2016
From an early age, Heejae Lim recognized her parents’ ability to speak English allowed them to engage with her school life in a way that non-English-speaking parents could not.
Oct 2nd, 2016
Parental engagement is twice as likely to influence a student’s long-term success as socioeconomic status, some studies say, but when parents struggle to engage because of language limitations, it creates a big barrier between home and school.
Aug 17th, 2016
San Francisco-based nonprofit TalkingPoints announced yesterday the launch of a centralized school-wide platform designed to help school officials communicate with all of the families they serve, regardless of language barriers.
May 13th, 2016
More than 1 million users. Sixteen billion monthly page views. Ninety-nine percent user engagement. If these sound like stats from tech companies, you’re right. Except these tech companies are nonprofits.
May 11th, 2016
As the largest competition of its kind, the EBPC features multiple cash prizes totaling $140,000, and awards prizes in two categories – one aimed at Idea-stage companies that are just getting started and Ventures, which already have revenues, grants, customers, or investments.
May 10th, 2016
STEM is high on the mind of the folks over at AT&T Aspire Accelerator. Three of the six teams selected to participate in its second six-month accelerator program aim to help students code and explore science careers.
Oct 23rd, 2015
As one of the top 10 projects on Google Impact Challenge, TalkingPoints, a one-man venture established by a Korean CEO Hee Jae Lim, competed against other firms for votes to win the challenge. Through the Google Impact Challenge with 800 firms competing, $5 million grant has been given out to Bay Area nonprofits. If selected as Google Impact Challenge top projects, the firms would get an opportunity to work with Google’s resources to further drive the firm to the next stage in addition to grants.
Oct 20th, 2015
Language barriers don’t exist in a vacuum. Let’s say a parent can’t communicate in English with their kid’s teacher, and that teacher only speaks English. The problem at hand isn’t just a translation issue. It’s a language barrier that limits the parent’s ability to participate in their child’s education, and limits the child’s development.
Oct 9th, 2015
At a demo day in San Francisco on Wednesday, Joyce Kim’s presentation of her financial tech startup sounded a lot like a tech startup pitching venture capitalists for funding. She scrolled through a slide deck and stood at a podium, sporting a t-shirt of her startup.
Oct 7th, 2015
First, it was parent-teacher communication by texting. Now, ClassDojo and Remind seem to be in a race to share information with parents in whatever native language they speak.
Sep 29th, 2015
Google wants Bay Area residents to pick the groups with the best ideas for transforming local lives. Google.org, the search giant’s philanthropic arm, is seeking public input on its Google Impact Challenge grants to “change-makers and forward-thinkers who challenge the status quo … with big ideas for an even better Bay Area,” as it says on its website.