Chicago Public Schools to Hire Education Advisor at $21,500 a Month

Marion Herbert's picture
Thursday, May 24, 2012

Barbara Byrd-Bennett, former Cleveland public schools CEO, was hired Wednesday to advise Chicago school officials while they do a national search for a chief education officer.

Byrd-Bennett will act as “chief education advisor” to Chicago Schools CEO Jean-Claude Brizard to temporarily fill the gap left by the April 27 resignation of Chief Education Officer Noemi Donoso.

She’ll be paid $21,500 a month. If she works the entire 13 months allowed under a School Board report, Byrd-Bennett would earn $281,000 as an “advisor.” That’s more than the $195,000 annual salary Donoso received as chief education officer — and more than Brizard’s $250,000 annual salary.

However, a district spokeswoman noted that Byrd-Bennett’s deal does not include benefits that ultimately raise Brizard’s and Donoso’s total compensation.

Asked if Byrd-Bennett herself would be considered for the system’s top education spot, a CPS spokeswoman said, “we are not in a position to discuss any potential candidates at this time.”

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