Senate Education Chair Reacts to ECOT Debacle
by Andy Chow
One of the state’s top education leaders in the Legislature has a simple message for Ohio’s largest e-school: follow the law. That call comes as the Electronic Classroom of Tomorrow, or ECOT, refuses to turn over attendance information for a state audit, claiming a dispute over a contract with the state.
ECOT and the Ohio Department of Education are now locked in a legal battle, with the online charter school refusing to hand over student log-in information. The school even has ads playing on TV criticizing Ohio’s leaders.
Republican Sen. Peggy Lehner of Kettering, chair of the Senate Education Committee and a school choice supporter, says what the state is asking for from ECOT is reasonable.
Lehner: “They’re obviously spending a lot of money to try to be exempt somehow from the law that applies to every other school in the state of Ohio and it’s getting to be rather offensive frankly.”
ECOT says the state is trying to change the audit rules established in a contract it signed with the state signed in 2002.