UPDATE: Jan. 11, 2023: In a joint online interview Wednesday morning, NWEA CEO Chris Minnich and HMH CEO Jack Lynch said HMH's acquisition of NWEA will give schools a fuller offering of assessment and curriculum tools.
"It's not enough just to give kids the best data," said Minnich, who is expected to transition to a leadership role in HMH’s assessment division. "We also need to answer the question about what's next for students."
The acquisition's 90-day customary regulatory review, which begins this month, will be conducted by the Oregon attorney general's office due to NWEA's nonprofit status there, as well as the U.S. Department of Justice.
All proceeds from the acquisition, which has not been disclosed, will be used to create a separate foundation, Minnich said. The name of the foundation and specific areas of giving have not been finalized, but the charity will have a national reach, he said.
- The education research and assessment nonprofit NWEA is being acquired by learning technology company Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, known as HMH, the organizations announced Tuesday.
- NWEA, which administers the MAP Growth assessments, is expected to operate as a division of HMH once a customary regulatory review has taken place and the agreement is formalized. The MAP Growth assessment cycles are not expected to be impacted, and educators can continue generating and reading reports and using other NWEA tools, according to a statement from the nonprofit.
- HMH will integrate NWEA assessment and tools with its curriculum on the company's platform. In the near term, proceeds from the acquisition will fund NWEA's continued focus on student learning and outcomes, with plans to eventually convert to a separate private foundation — unnamed as of now. The groups did not disclose the acquisition price.
NWEA worked with 10,000 school systems in 2022, said CEO Chris Minnich in a statement.
"When considering the right path forward, we kept our school district and state education partners at the center, with a focus on how we can deliver for them, especially in the areas they value," Minnich said. "As part of HMH, we will be able to address their needs faster while staying focused on the deep, trusting relationships we have built with them.”
NWEA also said the agreement will give educators "even more valuable information that helps identify learning needs, inform instruction, and personalize learning plans."
The organizations expect no interruptions to NWEA services, including professional learning workshops and school improvement services, and any events scheduled or planned are to continue as normal.
“We are thrilled at the potential this acquisition brings for K-12 educators, at a time when the connection between instruction and assessment is increasingly critical for student success,” said Jack Lynch, CEO of HMH.
HMH serves more than 50 million students and 4 million educators in 150 countries, according to the announcement. HMH is a portfolio company of Veritas Capital, a private investment firm that focuses on businesses providing technology and technology-enabled solutions.