Spokeswoman: Mayor supports leave of absence for Chicago Public Schools CEO

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CHICAGO — A spokeswoman for Mayor Rahm Emanuel says he supports Chicago Public Schools CEO Barbara Byrd-Bennett's decision to take a leave of absence amid a federal investigation over a $20.5 million no-bid contract.

Byrd-Bennett's attorney Michael Scudder confirms a letter was sent Friday to Board of Education members requesting a leave effective Monday.

In a statement, Emanuel spokeswoman Kelley Quinn says that while there have been no formal allegations, the mayor "has zero tolerance for any type of misconduct from public officials."

Emanuel and Board of Education President David Vitale announced earlier this week the nation's third-largest district is being investigated by federal authorities.

A spokesman for SUPES Academy in suburban Chicago said it's turned over records to investigators. Byrd-Bennett once consulted for the academy, which trains principals.

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