This story out of Ohio demonstrates an online charter school attempting to block an audit that would determine how much time students spent on task.
Why would they want to block such an audit? Because it could reduce the payments they receive from the state:
Senator Joe Schiavoni is calling it their “Hail Mary” to cover-up fraud on the state’s tax payers. He said the $107 million they receive is way over-budgeted, and that they filed the audit to try to keep that high income from the state.
“They asked for duration for how long each kid is on every single day in order to figure out funding. Rather than if they just clicked in one time in the morning, which ECOT sent over to ODE,” Schiavoni said.
The story noted that two other online schools had received significant overpayments and that this audit was designed to prevent an overpayment to ECOT:
Schiavoni said the need to audit based on duration came from the ODE finding two other e-schools, Akron Digital Academy and Lakewood Digital Academy, that collected more money than needed.
“They actually had the same audits done. ODE asked for this new information and found that they were over-paid by hundreds of thousands of dollars, and these are much smaller schools than ECOT. ECOT has 15,000 kids, Provost had 800 and they were over-paid $700,000,” Schiavoni said.
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