CHICAGO (CBS) — In the wake of the resignation of Chicago Public Schools CEO Barbara Byrd-Bennett, the interim head of the district was pledging to work with the new Chicago Board of Education, while begging off staying in his current position on a permanent basis.
Interim CPS Chief Executive Officer Jesse Ruiz said he would stay on as long as the mayor needs him to run the district until a permanent successor is found for Byrd-Bennett.
Byrd-Bennett resigned earlier this week, amid a federal investigation into a $20.5 million no-bid contract CPS awarded to her former employer, SUPES Academy.
“There’s no timetable, and I’m willing to serve as long as is necessary, and so the work continues. That’s what’s critical; that the work continues right now. We’re not missing a beat, and we’re continuing to build upon the success we’ve had the past four years,” he said.
Ruiz has been serving as interim CEO since Byrd-Bennett took a leave of absence in April. Now that she’s officially gone, he said he’s not interested in staying in the post permanently.
“I’m looking forward to getting back to serving the students of Chicago as a board member again,” he said. “Honored to serve in this role now, looking forward to moving the work forward, but I look forward to returning as vice president [of the Chicago Board of Education].”