Ex Chicago Schools chief Barbara Byrd-Bennett to be sentenced Friday in bribery case

Juan Perez, Jr:

Byrd-Bennett pleaded guilty in October 2015 to steering more than $23 million in no-bid contracts to the SUPES Academy education consulting firm where she once worked in return for kickbacks, other perks and a promise of a lucrative job once her time as CPS CEO was over.

Prosecutors are seeking a prison sentence of nearly 7 1/2 years for the disgraced educator, more than double the 3 1/2 years in prison that her attorneys have asked U.S. District Judge Edmond Chang to consider.

Byrd-Bennett is scheduled to be sentenced hours after one of her co-conspirators, former education consultant Thomas Vranas. In a filing early this month, Vranas’ attorneys asked a judge to consider a sentence of three years of probation. Prosecutors will ask that Vranas instead serve a 39-month prison sentence.