updated 11/30/2010 8:16:51 AM ET 2010-11-30T13:16:51

DALLAS, Nov. 30, 2010 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Archipelago Learning (Nasdaq:ARCL), one of the fastest growing subscription-based online education companies in the country, has been recognized by Tech & Learning magazine as an Award of Excellence winner for its Study Island Version 3.0.

For nearly three decades, the Tech & Learning Award of Excellence program has honored innovative education technology applications that break new ground in some important way, and also best-of-breed examples that demonstrate clear superiority over similar products in the market. This year, more than 30 educator-judges from the New York City Department of Education, the University of Michigan and other top Tech & Learning advisors test-drove over 140 entries and selected the winners. Evaluation criteria for this year's program included the following: quality and effectiveness, ease of use, creative use of technology, and suitability for use in an educational environment.

Used by more than 22,000 schools across the country, Study Island Version 3.0 was released in January 2010 and provides cost-effective, web-based instruction, practice, assessment and productivity tools that improve the performance of K-12 students and teachers. Built directly from state standards, including the new Common Core State Standards, Study Island combines rigorous academic content for students in math, reading, writing, science, and social studies with interactive and engaging features. New and improved Study Island functionalities that lead to its selection as an Award of Excellence winner include:

  • Increased functionality for Tier I and Tier II instruction in Response to Intervention (RtI) programs, including text‐to‐speech. When the function is turned on, a student can highlight text and click the speaker icon to have text read aloud.
  • Professional Development Toolbox (PD Toolbox): A collection of standards‐based lesson plans, lessons, instructional videos, and supplemental resources to provide educators with "just-in-time" classroom best practices.
  • Interactive Toolkit: A set of tools available to the student, such as on‐screen ruler, protractor, calculators (classic and scientific), scratch pad, and text highlighters. Calculators, scratch pad and highlighters can be turned off/on by teachers or administrators, and protractor and ruler are attached to questions where applicable.
  • Enhanced Reporting: A new report that helps measure progress in RtI programs. This feature shows a specific student's progress in a specific subject and topic by graphing sessions and scores for both on-grade level material and building block topics.

"We are pleased that Study Island Version 3.0 has been recognized as a Tech & Learning Award of Excellence winner," said Tim McEwen, chief executive officer of Archipelago Learning. "The enhanced content, features and functionality in Version 3.0 were implemented in response to suggestions from educators and students, so this award reaffirms our commitment to providing the highest impact and lowest cost comprehensive educational system, designed to improve teacher performance and result in significant academic gains by all students." 

About Archipelago Learning:

Archipelago Learning is a leading subscription-based online education company that provides standards-based instruction, practice, assessments, productivity and reporting tools that improve the performance of educators and students.  Study Island, its flagship product line, helps students in kindergarten through 12th grade master grade-level academic standards in a fun and engaging manner and is utilized by over 10 million students in approximately 23,400 schools in the United States and Canada.  Reading Eggs, an online early literacy program for students ages three to eight, offers skills, strategies and leveled eBooks essential for sustained reading success. EducationCity provides online K-6 instructional content and assessments for reading, mathematics and science and is used by 8,600 schools in the United Kingdom and 5,200 schools in the United States. For the post-secondary market, Northstar Learning offers online instructional content and exam preparation products across a variety of core college curriculum and career licensure areas. Archipelago Learning is headquartered in Dallas, Texas. For more information, please visit www.archipelagolearning.com .

The Archipelago Learning, Inc. logo is available at http://www.globenewswire.com/newsroom/prs/?pkgid=6864

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