Enrollment Manipulation Alleged

Another Charter School Under Investigation
Posted on 07/11/2018
Image of News Sign(as reported in vindy.com/Youngstown Vindicator)

Summit Academy Secondary School teachers were instructed to “make the information up” to meet deadlines for assessments determining students’ disability status, according to an Ohio Department of Education Office for Exceptional Children report.

Summit Academy Secondary School, a community charter school at 2800 Shady Run Road, has been placed under a corrective action plan by the ODE after a March 5 review revealed several instances of non-compliance with state law.

“The selective review consisted of record reviews, classroom observations, staff interviews, parent meetings and an analysis of district data, procedures and outcomes,” according to the report issued late Tuesday.

No one from the school could be reached for comment Tuesday night.

In the 2016-17 school year Summit Secondary received $4.3 million in state and federal funding.

Items of non-compliance include providing: a formal curriculum; accurate IEPs (individualized education plans) for students; licensed teachers for every classroom; and proper assessments and accommodations for students with disabilities.

Examples listed included assessments that were given without consideration to sensory needs, teachers being asked to sign off on documents indicating they attended IEP meetings they weren’t present for, grade-appropriate work not being provided and teachers not being aware of Ohio Learning Standards.

Of the six components on the 2016-17 ODE State Report Card, Summit Academy Secondary School earned four Fs, one D and was not rated in K-3 Literacy.

The report card can be viewed at reportcard.education.ohio.gov/Pages/School-Report.aspx?SchoolIRN=000303.

Summit Academy Secondary School in Youngstown has 243 students enrolled as of the 2016-17 school year.

Of the 243 students, 188, or 77.4 percent, have disabilities; and 222, or 91.4 percent, are economically disadvantaged, the ODE reported.

According to its website, Summit Secondary has one sensei (martial arts instructor), one math coach, seven intervention specialists, 13 instructional assistants and 11 teachers.

Summit has until Sept. 11 to comply with the components within its corrective action plan, according to the report.

In addition, the secondary school must submit compliant reports to correct the out-of-compliance IEPs to the OEC by Nov. 19.
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