A math tutor who charges students $10 an hour to tutor students for free in exchange for helping them solve problems could soon be out of work.
“Math Tutors” are teaching students math at home and using the work to earn extra income.
A report from Bloomberg Businessweek says the startup is now worth $2.7 billion, with a $10 million valuation.
The company is backed by Google, but its founder says he wants to help students pay for college.
“This is the future,” said Josh Levin, a math tutor for schools in the Chicago suburbs.
Levin started the company last year, and he said he was looking for students to mentor after learning that he was no longer a paid teacher.
The startup uses a virtual assistant to tutor, but Levin says he doesn’t work for the company.
Students can use the app to practice solving problems.
The average price for a single month’s tuition at a private math tutor is $9,000.
Levin said he would charge about $1,000 per hour.
The app has more than 8 million students across 40 states, but some teachers are not happy.
The company has raised $10.2 million in venture capital, but there is some uncertainty about whether it will be profitable.
Levin has raised another $8.5 million through another round of financing, but that money will likely be used for the first few months of operations, Levin said.
The app lets students pay Levin to tutor them for $10 per hour for one hour.
But some critics say Levin has done too little to improve the education system and that the business model doesn’t serve the public interest.
“The idea that a college tutor is going to make enough money to get paid to help pay for your education is a total fraud,” said Stephanie Pizzi, the president of the Education Law Institute, a consumer advocacy group.
“What’s more important is making sure that math is taught, not just tutored,” she said.
Levin declined to comment on whether he plans to close the business.