Bloom High School’s new principal Kenyatta Starks is on CPS “do not hire” list
Bloom Township High School District 206 hired a principal placed in “do not hire” status by her old employer, Chicago Public Schools (CPS), the Chicago Heights Patch reports.
Kenyatta Starks falsified enrollment and attendance records while a principal at John Marshall High School on the West Side, a 2016 CPS Inspector General’s investigation found. Though no longer employed by CPS, the district placed a “do not hire” note in an employment file dating back to her previous work there. She and two others, similarly accused of inflating attendance, sued CPS charging that racism was behind their firing. They are African American.
Bloom Superintendent Lenell Navarre recommended that the board hire Starks, now working as CEO of Empowered Community Schools, a Chicago school management company, the Patch article said. She begins her new job in July.
A spokesman for the district told the Patch that the while the district “was not at liberty to discuss the lawsuits and hiring policies of other school districts, we are willing to provide context in why we are excited for Kenyatta Starks to join our leadership team as the principal of Bloom High School.”
The spokesman also said in part that Starks “had been a consummate professional.”
“Ms. Starks' extensive background of more than two decades in education — specifically her strong track record in school leadership, innovation and service of large populations of students — certainly factored into this decision.”
Earlier this month a federal judge dismissed in part the complaint filed by Starks and the others against the Board of Education of the City of Chicago. A complaint against the Inspector General’s office was dismissed earlier by the court. A status hearing before Judge Jorge Alonso of United States District Court, N.D. Illinois, Eastern Division is scheduled for May 28.