Almost a year later his last layoff, the Lambda School online coding bootcamp has just announced more cuts as part of a larger structuring. In a blog post, CEO and founder Austen Allred said the startup, who raised $ 74 million from Series C in August, lays off 65 employees.
Roles that have been removed include senior product, engineering, design, community management, or academic staff. There is a Google Form for companies to post job vacancies for new Lambda school alumni.
“We’ve been working for years to make incentive-based education work,” Allred wrote in a tweet. “It’s more difficult than we initially thought; we had to invent a lot of things from scratch simultaneously and we have to do a lot of things exactly. “
Lambda School creates online career and tech space bootcamps – and it’s also a pioneer of the ISA, a revenue-sharing deal, touting it as a vital way to fund a ready-to-go education. employment. ISAs essentially allow students to avoid paying an upfront fee to attend a bootcamp and then reimburse course fees up to one percent of their future income. A number of startups have adopted the “Lambda School for X” format, such as Henri and Microverse. Other companies also offer ISAs such as Pursuit, V School, Launch School and the Grace Hopper program, an analysis shows.
The pandemic and unstable economic circumstances have made ISAs a more difficult path. Allred said some startups have pivoted from the model, but it looks like Lambda School won’t. It’s always a tough thing to fund as a startup because the business is basically in a game of waiting for debt until the students pay. The company may be considering various ways to fund its ISA activities, one of which led them to use hot water years ago.
“We have a great deal of interest in buying the revenue sharing agreements around the time of graduation, from investment funds and that sort of thing,” Allred said in April 2020.
We don’t know exactly what the restructuring will look like from a strategic standpoint, beyond Lambda School putting new enrollment on hold in part-time programs. . Earlier this month, Lambda School announced a new partnership with Amazon: a back-end engineering program that will last nine months. Since the program is full time, it is unlikely to be affected by the restructuring.
Today’s call from Lambda School illustrates how difficult it is to build an edtech company that is truly doing something new. The company has many players with different incentives to consider: students saving money, companies making money and venture capitalists who have given millions and millions to the company. expecting a release one day.
“Despite these changes, our mission remains the same. As we move forward, we will continue to focus on creating opportunities, whatever the circumstances, for anyone who wants to get into the job, ”the blog post read. Allred did not immediately respond to request for comment.