Skodel Partners with anzuk and Scoot Education to Go Global
“Skodel Check-In”, a wellbeing tool to measure wellbeing of school students, is about to launch globally. Skodel Check-In has been tested in the USA and UK and will formally launch in both countries today. The tool is being used in Australia and will launch in New Zealand in the first quarter of FY21.
Skodel Check-In provides real time data for teachers to monitor the wellbeing of students and it allows school leaders to get robust insights into key drivers of wellbeing, program effectiveness and assess this across different cohorts. The tool is winning rave reviews for its simplicity, speed and engagement and has already identified serious issues that were then acted upon by teachers and school management.
Skodel signed distribution partnerships with anzuk Education (UK) and Scoot Education (US). Both companies are part of anzuk founded in Australia in 2004. Anzuk and Scoot have become global leaders in education recruitment services and through their network of teachers, they impact the lives of over 500,000 students across the world every week. Today, its UK and US arms have partnered with Skodel to distribute ‘Skodel Check-In’ to school communities in the UK and US. Anzuk and Scoot aim to deliver exceptional experiences in schools and Skodel Check-In is their latest initiative.
Julian Fagan, Co-Managing Director of Skodel with his brother Ian Fagan, said today: “Ian and I are passionate about checking-in and the positive impact it will have on student life and school culture. We know that when learners feel confident, happy and safe, they are more engaged and more likely to succeed. It has taken many years to develop Skodel Check-In into the simple and fast tool that it is today and it will quickly become part of the normal cadence of school life.”
Ian Fagan added “There are two distinct factors that make mental health and wellbeing challenging to manage. It can change rapidly and so few are willing to communicate due to fear and stigma. Through Skodel Check-In, we are addressing these two challenges by engaging students in a safe and comfortable way to regularly communicate their wellbeing. The timely support solutions Skodel provides alongside Skodel Check-In will guide school management and teachers in dealing with many wellbeing and mental health situations. Skodel’s testing showed that students were very positive about using Skodel Check-In and found it an excellent way of expressing how they are feeling and what issues they are facing.”
Skodel was established in 2016 by Ian and Julian Fagan (identical twins from Sydney) and their colleague Huey Peard (a technologist from Melbourne). The three became focused on mental health, anxiety and wellbeing of students driven by their core belief that for education to be truly meaningful and life determining, wellbeing needed to be a key component during the education and maturation of students. Years of research, testing and developing led to Skodel Check-In.
Ben Goldsmith, Director of anzuk’s United Kingdom affiliate said “This tool is what teachers are looking for and what students need. Our testing in the UK provided overwhelming positive feedback and incredible insights. I am convinced that Skodel Check-In will be quickly adopted by hundreds of schools. I am proud to be associated with this tool that can bring so much benefit to students who are dealing with a fast moving and increasingly complex world that causes a myriad of small and hugely significant issues. School will be a better place for many of them when Check-In is used. Students want to be heard but do not know how to talk about their own wellbeing.”
It has taken years for Skodel to build Check-In. It is a simple wellbeing Check-In tool, cleverly designed to allow students to express themselves openly and quickly. The three founders of Skodel (Huey, Ian and Julian) have always shared a passion for building tools that support the learning journey for schools and students. The realities of building a sustainable business often come at the expense of a strict focus on product, something that didn’t sit well with the team. Skodel’s partnership with Scoot and anzuk eliminates the need for this compromise to take place. Skodel now has the capacity to double down on its investment in Research and Development whilst building strong and supportive relationships with the school communities that adopt Skodel Check-In.
When it comes to partnering with and supporting schools, Scoot and anzuk are unmatched. Both companies exhibit their willingness to roll up their sleeves and walk side by side with schools on the unending journey of achieving better educational outcomes.
CEO of Scoot, James Sanders says from California that “USA Schools appreciate reliable, user friendly products, but they also place great value on sincere and dedicated teams who want to enhance education and help students and teachers. Together with Skodel and the Skodel Check-In tool we meet those expectations.”
Our Shared Vision
A world where wellbeing is communicated and understood by all. To do this, we are driven by our mission to give every student a voice that is heard and acted on.
Ian and Julian were first introduced to Ben Goldsmith (anzuk - UK Director) and James Sanders (CEO Scoot Education) late last year through a mutual connection, Ian Basser. As parents, both Ian Basser and Ben were immediately drawn to Skodel Check-In, relating it back to how it could support the safety and wellbeing of their own children. The reality that nearly every second person will experience mental illness in their life, and that 75% of this group will develop early stages in adolescence, is a wake up call. Even more alarming is that only 20% will seek help. Ian and Ben became early fans of Skodel Check-In because it identifies issues early and allows students to be heard and teachers to respond.
A few months after that meeting the world changed due to COVID-19. The Skodel Founders met James Sanders, based in LA. With COVID-19 leading to an even sharper focus on student wellbeing for many schools, James felt there was an immediate need for schools to have a tool that could provide timely wellbeing data in a simple and non disruptive way. Invariably, during times of crisis, mental health comes under threat. This is happening and growing exponentially. For students, this can manifest quickly and in many forms.
Skodel Check-In was important before COVID-19, with its focus on supporting happy, safe and connected learners. That hasn’t changed. We believe in the power of a check-in and the need to make this a routine and purposeful component of effective student wellbeing management. However, COVID-19 with its poignant individual stories and ubiquitous impact on our local communities over the past three months has drawn us closer.