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ECOT Takes Funding Battle to Appeals Court

photo of Andy Chow
ECOT Superintendent Rick Teeters (standing) testified for the charter school at a hearing

The state’s largest online charter school is appealing a ruling that could let the Ohio Department of Education claw back up to $60 million in previous funding. This is over a dispute about how enrollment was calculated.

There are legislators who want to make sure the law is crystal clear in the future.

The Electronic Classroom of Tomorrow, or ECOT, is arguing that the state’s guidelines on attendance and enrollment are murky.

That’s in response to the Ohio Department of Education finding that the number of full time students at ECOT fell 60% short of what it reported.

Democratic Senate Minority Leader Joe Schiavoni of the Youngstown area says his bill will require teachers to take attendance and make it clear that e-schools must educate students.

“Set the tone for the upcoming school year and say these are the rules with 100% certainty,” he said.

The argument between providing education and offering learning opportunities is a big part of the court case that the state won. ECOT is appealing it.

Andy Chow is a general assignment state government reporter who focuses on environmental, energy, agriculture, and education-related issues. He started his journalism career as an associate producer with ABC 6/FOX 28 in Columbus before becoming a producer with WBNS 10TV.