Matt Steinmetz is the publisher and brand director of Publishing Executive.

When John Oliver, on his HBO "Last Week" show, did a recent segment on the problems with standardized testing, the one company that he mentioned at some length was Pearson - and that's no surprise. Pearson is the largest education company in the world (Fortune magazine says it may control up to 60 percent of the U.S. testing market), and it has become a high-profile target of opponents of high-stakes standardized testing.

How dominant is Pearson in American public schools? Oliver noted that it is possible for American students to take Pearson-designed tests

The Los Angeles Unified School District sent a letter to Apple Inc., this week saying that it will no longer pay for Pearson-created software installed on iPads purchased from Apple because it does not work. The District also said it wants a refund.

Southern California Public Radio reported that school district General Counsel David Holmquist sent a letter to Apple making the demands, saying, "While Apple and Pearson promised a state-of-the-art technological solution for ITI implementation, they have yet to deliver it."

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Just in time for Educause, Pearson on Monday announced its new REVEL platform, which it says replaces the traditional textbook and provides online learning tools for general studies courses. The platform aims to counter the "passive, laborious" materials of the past by engaging students with an interwoven combination of text, interactive exercises, infographics, social features, and videos, additionally allowing educators to track how much time students spend on the material.

Gerrman media giant Bertelsmann, part owner with Pearson of Big Five behemoth Penguin Random House, is reportedly closing its direct-to-consumer book sales business in Europe, Der Club, and its few retail bookstore premises. According to the Wall Street Journal report, “The company’s retail locations as well as the online store, branded under the ‘Der Club’ label, […]

The post Bertelsmann leaves the club as retail book arm closes appeared first on TeleRead: News and views on e-books, libraries, publishing and related topics.

The global education company Pearson has landed a major contract to administer tests aligned to the common-core standards, a project described as being of "unprecedented scale" in the U.S. testing arena by one official who helped negotiate it.

The decision to award the contract, announced Friday, was made by a group of states developing tests linked to the common core for the Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers, one of two main consortia of states creating exams to match the standards.

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