Arne Duncan on Byrd-Bennett: Makes you really sad

SHARE Arne Duncan on Byrd-Bennett: Makes you really sad
AX057_4437_9_999x665.jpg

U.S. Education Secretary Arne Duncan said he found CPS CEO Barbara Byrd Bennett’s involvement in a federal probe “sad” | (AP File Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)

Depressing — that’s how U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan described the downfall of Chicago Public Schools CEO Barbara Byrd-Bennett.

“It just makes you really sad for the city,” said Duncan, a Chicago native who led CPS for eight years until 2009, when President Barack Obama tapped him for the country’s top education job.

“Whatever happens going forward, I just think CPS needs continuity of leadership at the top,” Duncan said during a brief question-and-answer session with reporters Thursday afternoon after visiting Wendell Phillips Academy High School in Bronzeville.

“There’s been a lot of turnover and we just need stability. I’m sure the mayor will make a good choice and the mayor will figure out what the right thing to do is here, and whatever I can do to help, whatever I can do to support, obviously, I’m all in.”

Byrd-Bennett went on paid leave in April after it was revealed that she was under federal investigation for her role in CPS’ decision to award a $20.5 million no-bid contract in 2013 to her previous employer, Wilmette-based SUPES Academy.

The Latest
Peggy Dula’s $3,600 charge was far higher than what her two siblings were charged for their ambulance rides, though they were also in her car during a crash and were taken to the same hospital.
Mary Gonzalez, 81, is helping lead the push to close the polluting scrap-metal shredding operation owned by Sims Metal Management.
Those issuing voter registration and ballot challenges say they are worried about election fraud. Right. If there’s a scam afoot, it’s the goodwill and concern they claim in the guise of “election integrity.”
Blazingly original Netflix film blends music, narrative and trippy visuals to depict an artist’s search for romance.