"ECOT, Ohio’s largest online charter school, officially closes"
The embattled school had claimed an enrollment of more than 15,000 students just two years ago, including more than 1,000 in the Dayton area. But state officials eventually challenged that figure, suggesting there were closer to 6,000
ECOT argued that it merely had to “present” 920 hours of “learning opportunities” for students, while the Ohio Department of Education said students had to be logged on and engaged in school activities. ECOT fought and lost multiple court challenges, and the state began “clawing back” $60 million that it paid the school in 2015-2016 based on the higher enrollment figure.
Education regulators are reviewing a whistleblower’s claim that Ohio’s then-largest online charter school intentionally inflated attendance figures tied to its state funding using software it purchased after previous allegations of attendance inflation, The Associated Press has learned.
And this month
ECOT founder William Lager and two companies he owns should be ordered to pay back $62 million that the closed online charter school owes the state and others, Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine said in a court filing today.
That amount could triple if DeWine can win a tougher legal argument that Lager's relationship with the school and companies amounts to a pattern of illegal activity