Education

Karen Kasler

Republican candidates on this fall’s ballot are moving to distance themselves from the founder of what was the state’s largest online charter schoo, following a state audit that could result in criminal charges and reports of an FBI investigation for illegal campaign contributions.

Andy Chow

The state auditor says the state’s largest online charter school committed fraud by inflating student participation numbers in order to continue collecting millions in taxpayer money. As Statehouse correspondent Andy Chow reports, the auditor is now turning over his findings about the Electronic Classroom of Tomorrow for possible criminal investigation.

Andy Chow

Longtime critics of the Electronic Classroom of Tomorrow, the now-closed but still controversial online charter school, say that more employees would come forward with accusations of student data manipulation had they not signed contracts with non-disclosure agreements attached. 

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A new proposal would completely change the current state report card system as we know it. The bill would back off of the “A” through “F” grading scheme and offer a more comprehensive view.

Karen Kasler

Though it’s been closed for more than four months, critics are now accusing what was the state’s largest online charter school of deliberately manipulating student data to defraud the state out of millions of dollars. The allegation against the Electronic Classroom of Tomorrow is coming from a former employee. That allegation is now part of a larger investigation. 

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School districts around the state were forced to change their standardized testing schedules because of a system malfunction. Ohio’s testing vendor, AIR, told the state that students were not able to log-in and access their tests. One lawmaker says this is an example of a bigger issue he’s concerned about.

Andy Chow

A House panel listened to hours of testimony against a plan that would overhaul the state’s education system. The proposal would consolidate departments into one large education agency which answers directly to the governor. Many of the people lined up to speak against the bill are parents who homeschool their kids.

Dan Konik

House Republicans are defending the proposal that would merge several departments into one large education agency which would report directly to the governor. Elected local school boards are sounding off on how it would change the state board of education.

Andy Chow

The Statehouse was packed with people to testify against a proposed overhaul to the education system. The plan would hand the reins of the education department over to the governor. The latest committee hearing attracted opponents from several angles.

Andy Chow

The bill to overhaul the state’s education system and hand more control over to the governor’s office is getting its first committee hearing. Opponents say this measure strips away local control and one senator sees similarities to another controversial bill from a few years ago.

Karen Kasler

Lawmakers are pushing a bill that would overhaul the state education system in order to give most of the control over to the governor’s office. This is something Gov. John Kasich has wanted for a while now.

Karen Kasler

House Republicans rolled out a plan that would overhaul the state’s education system by consolidating several departments into one umbrella organization – including the Ohio Department of Education and of Higher Education. Supporters say this will bolster the connection between education and career-readiness.

The Ohio Channel

It was the heavyweight court battle that’s been brewing for more than a year. Attorneys for the now-closed Electronic Classroom of Tomorrow and the Ohio Department of Education traded jabs before the Ohio Supreme Court over how the state should fund schools and if that funding should be tied to just enrollment or student participation. 

Dan Konik

The Ohio Supreme Court will hear both sides of the high-profile argument between the state education department and the Electronic Classroom of Tomorrow on Tuesday. ECOT, which was the state’s largest online charter school before it closed, claims the state wrongfully clawed back millions of dollars it was paid to educate students. But the state says ECOT did not verify student participation. A former staff member is claiming teachers and students have become the victims of the ECOT fallout.

Karen Kasler

The shutdown of the state’s largest online charter school – which owes tens of millions of dollars to the state – has thousands of students searching for options in the middle of the school year. And there are also some 800 teachers and faculty from the Electronic Classroom of Tomorrow who are now looking for work.

Andy Chow

An estimated 12,000 students must figure out where to go now that the state’s largest online charter school has closed. Marred by budget problems and alleged failure to comply with regulations, ECOT’s sponsor decided to back out. And the sponsor and the school met in a Franklin County courtroom to figure out what happens to the school’s funds and records. 

Karen Kasler

The state’s largest online charter school could be in danger of closing in the near future with the news that the school is losing its sponsor. This is just the latest domino to fall for the Electronic Classroom of Tomorrow, which has been battling financial and regulatory issues for years now. 

Karen Kasler

A final end to the legal battle involving the state and its largest online charter school is coming closer. The Ohio Supreme Court has set a date to hear arguments in the case filed by the Electronic Classroom of Tomorrow.

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The state is approaching a new era in school report cards as districts will receive an overall letter grade next year. A research group wants Ohio to change their formula before those new grades come out.

Karen Kasler

This time last year state school board members saw an alarming report that showed about a 1/3 of Ohio’s high school juniors were not meeting the standards needed to graduate. That was for the class of 2018 and the numbers aren’t looking much better for the class of 2019.

Karen Kasler

The state’s largest online charter school said in court filings last week that it will close by January if it’s forced to pay back nearly $80 million to the state from two attendance audits. But the state auditor says that doesn’t mean the bill would be settled.

Karen Kasler

A Republican state senator wants to roll back almost a hundred requirements on school districts. They range from mandates on school personnel to directives for students in classrooms.

Karen Kasler

The Ohio Department of Education says its latest audit of the state’s largest online charter school shows it once again inflated its attendance. And that means ECOT owes another big bill for the students it was paid to educate – but the state says it didn’t.

The bad grades for many school districts latest round of report cards has upset some parents and school officials. And now they’ve angered a state lawmaker who says he’s writing a bill to change the report cards. 

Karen Kasler

A vocal critic of charter schools is asking the state to step in and block a major move by its largest online charter school. There’s concern that a planned switch to a new designation by the school could game the state out of taxpayer money.

Dan Konik

In most of Ohio, the kids are back in school, and more than 800,000 of them ride buses to class each day. Figuring out the most efficient and most cost-effective way to do that is a complex equation. And it’s become more important now with student transportation taking a big hit in the new state budget. 

Karen Kasler

60% of Ohio public school students living in poverty scored below proficient on required statewide tests, and the districts that have the lowest test scores have the highest percentages of poor students. That’s based on data from the Ohio Department of Education.  State lawmakers are now studying the connection between education and poverty.

Karen Kasler

At one point, four in ten incoming freshmen on Ohio’s public colleges and university campuses needed refresher courses on things they should have learned in high school. That number is falling, but officials are still concerned about the number of kids needing remedial work – which can be costly.

Andy Chow

A lawmaker wants to plug a potential hole in education funding and accountability. The measure would make sure that traditional public schools are getting more money if charters don’t need it or shouldn’t have it.

Karen Kasler

The state education department has ordered that more money be pulled from an embattled online charter school’s monthly funding. Officials believe the Electronic Classroom of Tomorrow is still getting too much money based on a suggested drop in enrollment.

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