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State denies charter school sponsorship

CINCINNATI (Jeff Hirsh) -- More confusion about the possibility of a new charter school opening in the former home of a different charter school shut down by the state of Ohio.  

The new school, called Hope-4-Change Academy, wanted to take over the old VLT school buildings in Over-the-Rhine, as well as use another building of its own.  But the State Department of Education had refused to give Hope-4-Change any money. 

Wednesday, the school's sponsor was in trouble.  The state accused that sponsor, the Portage County Educational Service Center, of "actively and intentionally circumventing the law" in trying to open Hope-4-Change with a disqualified school identification number.  And the two top Portage County Center officials have been referred to the agency which investigates educator misconduct.

A Hope-4-change spokesperson said they were no longer associated with the Portage County Center, were working on obtaining a new sponsor, and planned to open next week. 

But a representative for the Ohio Department of Education told Local 12 News it was way past the deadline to get a new sponsor, and the odds of the school opening are, "slim to none."

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