KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — A state auditor says the Missouri education department used a biased bidding process when it contracted with a consultant to study an overhaul of the Kansas City school district.

The review released Tuesday criticized the Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education's contract with Indianapolis-based Cities for Education Entrepreneurship Trust.

The Kansas City Star reported (http://bit.ly/1uTdVJ2 ) in December that Education Commissioner Chris Nicastro talked with CEE-Trust consultants long before the $385,000 contract was approved, and the contract cost three times more than a bid from a Massachusetts company. The money came from the Kauffman and the Hall Family Foundations, which support charter schools.

The education department said in a statement Tuesday that it would take steps to implement some of the auditor's recommendations in the future.

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Information from: The Kansas City Star, http://www.kcstar.com