The online charter school Electronic Classroom of Tomorrow could shut down as early as next week, the Columbus Dispatch reported Wednesday after the financially troubled school’s sponsor said it will terminate its sponsorship contract.
The Dispatch report noted that Ohio charter schools cannot operate without a sponsor, an organization that collects up to 3 percent of a school’s state funding and is responsible for the school’s performance and compliance with state law.
The Educational Service Center of Lake Erie West plays that role for ECOT, which is entangled in a legal fight with the Ohio Department of Education over a demand to repay about $80 million that the school received over two school years for students who failed to participate in the state-minimum 920 hours of educational opportunities.
ECOT’s semester ends next Thursday, Jan. 18. Top ECOT administrators said they are seeking a way to keep the program running.