On Charter Schools, Auditor Yost Makes Promising Noises

During his swearing in, Auditor Yost had this to say

Charter schools will remain a major focus in Auditor Dave Yost's second term, the Republican announced Monday.

Mr. Yost, who was sworn in during a morning Statehouse ceremony, told reporters that while he plans to also prioritize public records, board accountability and data integrity, charter schools will be "front and center" during the first year of his new term.

"We audit every charter school now, if the legislature chooses to give us additional tools or greater responsibility we'll do that - we'll be part of that discussion too," he said. "I think there's some things that need to be addressed. There's multiple ways of doing it and that debate will unfold and I'll be part of it over the next few months."

The auditor launched an investigation into 19 charters managed by Concept Schools last year. (See Gongwer Ohio Report, October 14, 2014)

In addition to charter schools, Mr. Yost said he intends to focus on board accountability, saying he's "very concerned about the uneven quality of the unpaid boards that we charge with supervising various public functions."

"I'm not sure the lines of responsibility are sufficiently clear or that boards are being given the tools they need to succeed," he said. "And that goes from a small charter school board acting in a public behalf all the way up to large institutions spending millions of dollars."

That's good to hear. However, we are still waiting for his report on Horizon schools. He seemed much swifter, and public, with his investigation of data tampering at Columbus City Schools than he has been with this important investigation. A quick look at recent campaign finance reports show that Yost has been a significant beneficiary of contribtiuons from the charter sector, taking in almost $50,000 from David Brennan (White Hat) and William Lager (ECOT) alone. Only time will tell whether that was a sound investment by the for profit charter folks.