INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Indiana Republican leaders are resisting steps toughening state laws on privately operated online schools, pushing aside blame in the alleged enrollment inflation by two such schools that wrongly collected $69 million in taxpayer money.
The state audit of Indiana Virtual School and Indiana Virtual Pathways Academy released this month outlined how they improperly claimed about 14,000 students as enrolled between 2011 and 2019, even though they had no online course activity.
Republicans who dominate the state Legislature have rejected complaints from Democrats that responsibility for the fraud rests with lax regulations. Republican Gov. Eric Holcomb and GOP legislative leaders are giving up campaign contributions from sources related to the two schools.
(This story was originally published on Feb. 22, 2020)