Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Gulen Charter Scandal: Lawyers for Turkey call for probe of Chicago charter school | Chicago Sun-Times

Lawyers for Turkey call for probe of Chicago charter school | Chicago Sun-Times:

Lawyers for Turkey call for probe of Chicago charter school

Lawyers for the government of Turkey filed a complaint Tuesday with the Chicago Public Schools’ inspector general against a local charter group and its taxpayer-funded school in Rogers Park. | Sun-Times file photo
Lawyers for the government of Turkey filed a complaint Tuesday with the Chicago Public Schools’ inspector general against a local charter group and its taxpayer-funded school in Rogers Park. | Sun-Times file photo

Lawyers for the government of Turkey filed a complaint Tuesday with the Chicago Public Schools’ inspector general against a local charter group and its taxpayer-funded school in Rogers Park.
The complaint alleges Des Plaines-based Concept Schools and its Chicago Math and Science Academy engage in “sweetheart deals” that hurt local taxpayers — but benefit the global movement led by Turkish-born cleric Fethullah Gulen.
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan is in a bitter struggle with the 75-year-old Gulen, who lives in Pennsylvania and has ties to charter-management firms that run about 150 schools across the country, including CMSA and three other publicly funded Concept campuses in Chicago.
Islamic cleric Fethullah Gulen (pictured in July 2016) | AP file photo
Islamic cleric Fethullah Gulen (pictured in July 2016) | AP file photo
The attorneys for Erdogan’s government, led by Washington, D.C.-based lawyer Robert Amsterdam, have filed similar complaints with education officials in three other states in recent months.
In a statement, Concept Schools said the Turkish government’s complaints are “politically motivated stunts” and that officials in other states have “found no merit to their claims.”
“Concept has followed all guidelines set forth by Chicago Public Schools and the Illinois State Board of Education,” according to the statement.
CPS Inspector General Nicholas Schuler declined to comment.
In their complaint here, lawyers for Turkey accused CMSA’s board of working with Concept and its real-estate arm “to commit ongoing fraud, waste and financial mismanagement of Lawyers for Turkey call for probe of Chicago charter school | Chicago Sun-Times:

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