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Changpeng Zhao Founds Giggle Academy, is the Free Education Platform a Publicity Stunt?

Published March 20, 2024 11:26 AM
Eddie Mitchell
Published March 20, 2024 11:26 AM
By Eddie Mitchell
Verified by Peter Henn
Key Takeaways
  • Changpeng “CZ” Zhao is launching a free educational platform for children.
  • The former Binance CEO is willing to fund the entirety of the project to keep it free.
  • There will be no crypto involved, but senior courses will teach blockchain, AI, and other modern topics.

Despite criminal sentencing scheduled for April 30 2024, former Binance CEO Changpeng “CZ” Zhao has launched an education-centric project called “Giggle Academy”. This seemingly philanthropic effort aims to bring free basic education to children around the world.

Billed as a platform with no economic model, it will use new techniques, technologies, and other methods to teach. However, it is not the first time Zhao has launched a project post-resignation. Nevertheless, the timely arrival of this particular effort may lead some to think this is just a publicity stunt.

A Free Education

Zhao announced that he was getting started with a new philanthropic initiative called Giggle Academy . According to the disgraced ex-Binance chief and the concept paper , it wants to teach grade one to 12 educational content using “new techniques”.

As the concept paper outlines, the project won’t be aiming to replace existing educational systems. It will, instead, target children in regions where there is no basic education.

It will cover all the core subjects of maths, science, and literature – and all they entail – as well as some more modernĀ subjects for senior levels. These include, perhaps unsuprisingly given its founders background, finance, blockchain, Artificial Intelligence (AI), and others. Interestingly, however, there will be no courses on “history, religion, etc.” as there is too much “potential debate on a global platform.”

Regardless, Giggle Academy will use AI, automation, and even non-fungible tokens (NFTs) to bring a gamified and adaptive curriculum to the next generation.

Changpeng Zhao’s Intentions

Zhao’s reason  for creating Giggle Academy, is because, he says, it is the most “impactful thing” he could do with “the next chapter of his life.”

He said: “I could try to help fight corruption, world hunger, climate change, etc. But I have no expertise there. My effectiveness will be low. I believe as more people become better educated, they will indirectly help with these issues.”

He appears to be ready to fund the entire project. Zhao highlights that his expertise rests in building teams, building software platforms, and notes it is one of the best ways for him to spend money.

Though Zhao says there will be no crypto involved, there will be non-fungible tokens (NFTs). These will act as badges that represent how far a student has come.

Meanwhile, the project is actively hiring and remains open to working with other charities to fulfil this vision. It is, however, noted that Giggle Academy wishes to remain autonomous to “develop our own approach, and at our own (fast) pace”.

Too Little Too Late?

Naturally, this has come as a bit of a headscratcher for some. Zhao is just over a month away from a criminal sentencing hearing that could see him jailed for 18 months.

Following a court decision to have Zhao’s passports and travel documents seized – as well as orders to not leave the US and report any inter-state movement – the announcement of Giggle Academy oddly signals a rather optimistic outlook from the former crypto figurehead.

That, or this is simply an effort to polish up his public image before his trial. A skeptic might suggest it merely gives his lawyers a bit more to work with in the hearing.

However, now that the word is out, and with Giggle Academy hiring and actively engaging the relevant stakeholders, Zhao will need to come good on the project lest he takes yet another blow to his reputation.

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