Online Charter School in Legal Battle Seeks New Designation

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COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) – Ohio’s high court has agreed to consider an enrollment dispute the state’s largest online charter school says could determine the fate of the entire industry.

The Ohio Supreme Court agreed Wednesday to hear an appeal from Electronic Classroom of Tomorrow, commonly called ECOT.

The school is challenging how the Ohio Department of Education tallied student log-ins when it determined that ECOT must repay $60 million for misrepresenting enrollment in 2015-16.

The state contends ECOT didn’t provide adequate documentation of student participation to justify the nearly 14,000 students for which it was compensated. The school argues the state wrongly changed reporting criteria.

ECOT is one of the largest online charter schools in the U.S. It announced last month that it was applying to be designated a dropout prevention school.