More Rulings Against ECOT, And The Budget Director Warns Tough Times Could Be Coming

This was a tough week for the state’s largest online charter school, the Electronic Classroom of Tomorrow. The Ohio Supreme Court says ECOT's monthly payments from the state can be reduced by $2.5 million, to pay back the $60 million the state says it owes because it inflated its full time enrollment by 9,000 students. 

Public school districts constructing new schools with state money are sometimes surprised by one of the rules - that state dollars can't be used for auditoriums. As Statehouse correspondent Jo Ingles reports, that creates some tough decisions as districts decide how to move forward with their building plans.

In spite of tax collections coming in short of projections for nearly all of the fiscal year that just ended, the state says it closed the books with a surplus that was right on target.  But state budget director Tim Keen is sounding warnings about the next two years, because of actions taken by lawmakers during the budget process.

A national initiative to revive civility and respect in political talk launched this week in four states, including Ohio.  The project from the National Institute for Civil Discourse at the University of Arizona hopes to reach 100,000 citizens in Ohio and Iowa, both swing states, along with strongly red Arizona and solidly blue Maine. And the group chose the Columbus Metropolitan Club as the venue to kick things off.

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