|By Business Wire||
|January 17, 2014 08:16 AM EST||
8x8, Inc. (NASDAQ:EGHT), a provider of cloud communications and collaboration solutions, today announced that it is providing integrated business VoIP telephony, video, group paging and mobile services for Learn4Life’s rapidly growing network of public charter schools. These advanced services are being subsidized through the federal government’s E-rate program, which supports telecommunications modernization and upgrades at qualifying educational institutions.
Founded 13 years ago, Learn4Life began in Lancaster, California, as a new education resource for disadvantaged children who cannot attend traditional full-time schools. Typically these kids have dropped out—or are at risk for dropping out—because they must work to support their families, have experienced teen pregnancy, are in foster care, or lack transportation. Learn4Life addresses these barriers by giving each student a personal learning plan that allows them to do most of their schoolwork at home. Phone, Internet and videoconferencing services enable them to connect with teachers remotely.
Now with more than 70 sites in Southern California and plans to expand to Texas, Ohio and Northern California over the next two years, Learn4Life needed highly reliable unified communications that could support both its rapid expansion and its distance learning model. When the company’s previous VoIP provider could not deliver the required uptime or scalability, Learn4Life turned to cloud-based provider 8x8.
“We need a service provider who can keep up with us,” said Skip Hansen, senior vice president of Learn4Life. “Unless we can roll out reliable communications quickly, we have to delay the opening of new sites—and that’s not in line with our mission. Our goal isn’t just to teach kids; we’re trying to save their lives. Time to market is key for us.”
Participation in the federal E-rate program was also part of Hansen’s selection criteria. He estimates that Learn4Life recoups 85–95% of its actual communication costs through the program, making 8x8’s participation in E-rate “essential” to his organization’s success and growth.
More than 50 Learn4Life sites are already using 8x8 unified communications. 8x8’s bandwidth-efficient cloud infrastructure supports videoconferences between teachers and students without degrading phone, Internet or other IP-based services. Group paging enables staff at all sites to hear company announcements using the intercom feature on their desk phones. 8x8’s mobile app for iOS and Android devices allows users to access 8x8 features through their smartphones and tablets no matter where they are.
“8x8’s cloud-based communication services are ideal for geographically dispersed, high-growth organizations like Learn4Life because they unify existing sites and support rapid deployment of new locations,” said 8x8 CEO Vik Verma. “Learn4Life is pioneering an educational concept that offers personalized learning for disadvantaged students who might otherwise never acquire the skills they need to survive. 8x8 is honored to help Learn4Life fulfill its mission by providing advanced solutions that enable at-risk kids to learn effectively at home, and enable employees to collaborate effectively across multiple locations.”
About 8x8, Inc.
8x8, Inc. (NASDAQ:EGHT) is a provider of unified communications and collaboration, or UCC, services in the cloud to small and medium businesses, or SMBs, and mid-market and distributed enterprises. The company delivers a broad suite of UCC services to in-office and mobile devices spanning cloud business VoIP, virtual meeting, call center software and virtual desktop through our proprietary unified software as a service, or SaaS, platform. For additional information, visit www.8x8.com, or connect with 8x8 on Google+, Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter.
Learn4Life is a growing network of public charter schools. Our mission is to connect students to one of our partnered resource centers located throughout California, and each student receives a personalized learning plan to help them reach their goals. Students who attend Learn4Life schools are all taught individually in a one-on-one setting, on a personalized track to graduation. With thousands of success stories already and many more to come, Learn4Life schools are on the cutting edge of education reform.