Today, state Senator Teresa Fedor (D-Toledo) released the following statement after the Supreme Court of Ohio ruled by a narrow 4-3 majority that the Electronic Classroom of Tomorrow (ECOT) cannot appeal the ruling by the State Board of Education and must pay back more than $60 million in state funding:
“It is about time for ECOT to be held responsible for its officials’ criminal activity that robbed the state of tens of millions of dollars and deprived many students of substantial learning opportunities. Here in my district, students in the Toledo City School District have lost more than $9.1 million since 2012 to ECOT. Students affected by ECOT will never get that time back. At the very least, the state should be able to recover the money it lost.
“The ECOT scandal is a stark reminder that we must verify how all educational entities are spending taxpayers’ money. Our children deserve nothing less.”
ECOT was Ohio’s largest online charter school before it was closed in 2018. It was founded by William Lager, a software executive for subsidiary education companies that took in nearly $23 million in tax dollars in 2014. ECOT received about $115 million in tax dollars that year.