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Ohio's Auditor Asks Education Department To Cut Back On Payments To ECOT

Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost
Ohio Public Radio
Ohio Auditor Dave Yost

The state auditor wants the Ohio Department of Education to stop paying so much public money to the state's largest online charter school. He claims there are still discrepancies as to how many students are actually attending the Electronic Classroom of Tomorrow.

The Electronic Classroom of Tomorrow received millions of dollars based on enrollment of more than 14,000 students. But Auditor Dave Yost says that doesn’t add up given ECOT’s own court statements.

“They told the Supreme Court earlier this month that they had an unprecedented drop in enrollment. Well both of those things can’t be true," he said.

The state is already clawing back $60 million because of an inflated student count two school years ago.

Yost, who used to be an ECOT supporter, wants to avoid a protracted battle to get back more money a year from now. So he’s asking the Ohio Department of Education to hold in escrow a significant portion ECOT's monthly payments until an exact student count can be verified.

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.