Interim Chicago Public Schools CEO Jesse Ruiz is calling for an independent audit of the contracting process in the school district.
The push for an independent audit follows the launch of a federal investigation into the role Barbara Byrd-Bennett may have had in a $20.5 million contract with SUPES Academy, a Wilmette company that provides training for school principals. Byrd-Bennett, who previously worked for SUPES, took a leave of absence last week and Ruiz was named interim schools chief of the CPS district.
Over the weekend, Ruiz asked school officials to stop "sole-source contracts" and asked CPS lawyers to draw up paperwork to end the SUPES contract in the event that the investigation shows that there was illegal activity. The feds have been requesting a number of files from Byrd-Bennett as well as three other CPS employees.