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State Withholding More Money From ECOT

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The Ohio Department of Education has ordered that more money be pulled from an embattled online charter school’s monthly funding. The moves comes as officials say the Electronic Classroom of Tomorrow is still getting too much money based on a suggested drop in enrollment.

The Ohio D.O.E. is putting aside 12 percent of the money it sends to ECOT every month. That’s in addition to the $2.5 million the state is already clawing back every month to reclaim $60 million that officials say ECOT received because of inflated student enrollment.

Republican Auditor Dave Yost says ECOT has stated in court documents that the school is struggling and enrollment is dropping. So he says it’s right for the state to withhold more money.

"ECOT may be asking for more funding than they’re entitled to because they’re having some money withheld, and if they were to go away we wouldn’t be able to get that money back.”

ECOT’s spokesperson said they’re consulting with their legal team before responding.

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.