The state education department says Ohio's largest online charter school severely over-reported how many students actually attended class full time. But the school says the state's report is a slap in the face to a pending court battle.
The state says only 40% of the more than 15,000 students enrolled at the Electronic Classroom of Tomorrow spent enough time learning during the day to qualify as full-time students.
Although the Lame Duck Legislative Session doesn’t begin until after the November election, the Ohio Senate Education Committee is scheduled to reconvene Tuesday.
Education Committee Chair Peggy Lehner says a truancy bill is her highest priority. The Senate Republican from Kettering says the legislation requires schools to look at why students skip class instead of resorting to suspensions.
"To start looking at truancy as a social-emotional issue, as opposed to a judicial-issue."
When report cards came out recently, it was not without controversy.
Districts did worse than last year because the tests and the expectations changed. It was harder to get a passing grade.
“But the report card is important. It tells us useful information and we can't just ignore it in this state,” says Howard Fleeter, an economist who consults for the non-profit Ohio Education Policy Institute. “As we raise the bar, we're increasing the challenge disproportionately for districts that are struggling the most.”
A report commissioned by three groups representing officials from traditional public schools shows what they call a strong link between student performance and household income - in other words, kids in wealthy districts do better on tests on average than kids in poor districts do.
File photo of Cleveland. (Tony Ganzer / ideastream)
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