State to offer assistance to ECOT students looking for a school

COLUMBUS, Ohio (WYTV) – The Ohio Department of Education is making resources available for families and educators affected by the suspension of Electronic Classroom of Tomorrow (ECOT).

The department will help families find new educational opportunities. Options include schools in their home district, schools in neighboring districts that may allow non-residents to attend (“open enrollment” districts), private schools, and community (charter) schools, including online schools.

“Districts and schools have already taken actions to streamline and accelerate their enrollment processes. We know the entire education community will come together with care and compassion in the best interest of these students,” said Paolo DeMaria, superintendent of public instruction.

Families can visit the Ohio Department of Education website and click the “Find a School” button to learn more about the schools near them.

About 12,000 Ohio students are impacted by the abrupt closure of ECOT. The publicly funded e-school has been running out of money amid a legal dispute with the state, and its potential closure shifted from a possibility to a reality when the required oversight entity known as its sponsor decided Thursday to suspend that arrangement. Students had wrapped up their first semester the same day not knowing whether their school would be operational to resume classes Monday as scheduled.

ECOT spokesman Neil Clark blamed the situation on politics and said it wasn’t in students’ best interests.