A recent Chicago Sun-Times investigation revealed a severe conflict of interest between Board of Education member Deborah Quazzo and work as a venture capitalist. Over the past 18 months since her appointment five companies she invest in received $2.9 million for their educational technology. Prior to the mayor naming Quazzo to the board these same companies received just $900,000 in the previous three and a half years.
“The Board of Education is supposed to make decisions that are best for our kids, not for their own wallets,” said Anthony Edwards, a parent representative of the O’Keefe School of Excellence local school council. “The mayor has said he believes in accountability. If he really believed in accountability he would support an Elected Representative School Board, a board accountable to voters and not corporate interests.”
The Sun-Times investigation further revealed her companies cut costs to a dollar below the $25,000 threshold to avoid board oversight.
“As a member of a local school council I know that I am prevented from doing business with the school,” continued Edwards. “I am not allowed to make money in this position. The rules apply to her too. Her companies have made money because of her appointment and it’s at the expense of our kids. She must resign.”