DALLAS (CBS 11 NEWS) – More trouble facing Dallas Schools Superintendent Mike Miles.
On Monday night, the school board voted unanimously 8-0 to spend $100,000 to conduct an independent investigation into his actions.
The man hired for the job is Paul Coggins, a former U.S. Attorney of Dallas and Fort Worth.
His job is to report back to the full board in 30 days whether the Superintendent Miles violated any district policies, procedures, regulations, ethical rules or his contract.
This controversy began with a complaint last month by the district’s former communications chief, Rebecca Rodriguez.
She claimed that Mr. Miles used undue influence to add a parent education advocacy group, Concilio, to a $200,000 district contract.
Rodriguez’s complaint began an internal investigation that the Superintendent is accused of temporarily stopping.
The district’s top internal investigator said Mr. Miles may have tried to obstruct the investigation.
So now the Board President, Eric Cowan, is sending a letter to the Superintendent with specific instructions.
Cowan says, “He will have to cooperate with the investigation to make sure it’s complete within a timely manner.”
When asked if the Superintendent would be able to interfere with the investigation, Cowan said, “That will be part of the letter that the. board will draft to him.”
The board’s Vice-President, Lew Blackburn said, “I think it’s best we have a very independent investigator to come and complete the report, not where we have our own employees to investigate the Superintendent.”
Mr. Miles didn’t attend Monday’s meeting at the request of the board President.
The Superintendent defended his actions in a statement saying that it’s his responsibility to make the final determination on contract recommendations to the board.
As for accusations he suspended the internal investigation, Mr. Miles says he considered doing so because the district was negotiating with Rodriguez, who was in the process of leaving.
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