Barbara Byrd-Bennett arrives at West Virginia federal prison

August 29, 2017 GMT

CHICAGO (AP) — Former Chicago Public Schools CEO Barbara Byrd-Bennett has reported to Alderson Federal Prison Camp, a minimum security facility in West Virginia.

Byrd-Bennett reported Monday to serve 4 ½ years for steering $23 million in no-bid city contracts to education firms for a more than $2 million kickback.

It was a tearful 68-year-old who stood before U.S. District Judge Judge Edmond Chang in April to learn her fate. Byrd-Bennett apologized before learning her punishment, saying: “What I did was terribly wrong. ... I’m ashamed and I’m sorry.”


The minimum security prison Byrd-Bennett reported to also goes by the knick-name “Camp Cupcake.” It was where businesswoman Martha Stewart served five months for lying to the FBI about alleged insider trading in 2005.

Performance pay for any work Byrd-Bennett may do is capped at 40 cents an hour and $5.25 a month, well below the $250,000 a year she earned as schools CEO.