updated 2/15/2011 4:16:12 PM ET 2011-02-15T21:16:12

DALLAS, Feb. 15, 2011 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Archipelago Learning (Nasdaq:ARCL), a leading software-as-a-service (SaaS) provider of education solutions, today announced that its flagship e-learning system, Study Island, is now compatible with the SMART Response interactive response system from SMART Technologies Inc. (Nasdaq:SMT) (TSX:SMA). By synchronizing these two innovative products, K-12 schools and districts that have both Study Island and SMART's interactive response system devices can transform learning experiences and increase student engagement in teacher-led instructional settings.

Used by more than 23,000 schools across the country, Study Island offers web-based, standards-aligned instruction in math, reading, writing, science, and social studies. The program includes inventive instruction, practice, remediation, assessments, and real-time reporting that improve the performance of students, and is custom built directly to state standards and the new Common Core Standards, with cross-walks between them.

"We continue to pursue opportunities to further enhance the high-impact, low-cost value proposition of Study Island," said Tim McEwen, Chief Executive Officer of Archipelago Learning. "Student response systems are highly effective in increasing student interactivity and measuring learning comprehension in real time. Connecting the Study Island content with these devices gives teachers the ability to make informed, on-the-spot decisions as they assist each and every student in the learning process."  

Using content from Study Island, students can master grade-level academic standards by submitting real-time answers to interactive questions using SMART Response. Whether tracking student responses from assessments built from state or Common Core standards or from ad hoc diagnostic and formative assessments in core subjects created using Study Island's Custom Assessment Builder, the handheld wireless remotes help teachers develop data-informed differentiated instruction to ensure optimal academic growth for all students.

Current Study Island customers using SMART Response devices will have access to the program enhancement free of charge. In addition to SMART Response, Study Island is compatible with handheld student input devices from a number of other providers. 

Study Island is an instructional system that helps K-12 students master grade-level academic standards in a fun and engaging manner. More information, along with pricing for individuals and quantity discounts for educational institutions, is available at the Study Island website: www.studyisland.com .

About Archipelago Learning

Archipelago Learning (Nasdaq:ARCL) is a leading software-as-a-service (SaaS) provider of education solutions used by approximately 13 million students in over 35,000 schools throughout the United States, Canada, and the United Kingdom. Our supplemental product offerings facilitate the evolution of education as technology transforms the learning experience. For more information, please visit us at www.archipelagolearning.com .

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

About SMART Technologies

SMART Technologies is a leading provider of collaboration solutions that transform the way the world works and learns. We believe that collaboration and interaction should be easy. As the global leader in interactive whiteboards, we bring more than two decades of collaboration research and development to a broad range of easy-to-use, integrated solutions that free people from their desks and computer screens, so collaborating and learning with digital resources are more natural.

CONTACT: Investor Relations and
         Corporate Communications Contact:
         Christy Linn
         (214) 466-1825
         christy.linn@archlearning.com
         
         
         Product Media Contact:
         Leslie Eicher
         (314) 965-1776
         leslie@eichercommunications.com

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