CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- Arlene Trefil’s frustration with Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools is at a boiling point. Arlene is not a parent, she is a teacher fighting to keep the unemployment benefits she received this summer after CMS terminated her in the Reduction of Force.
Our camera was told to stay out of Arlene’s unemployment appeals hearing, so we recorded Arlene’s fight from behind the glass. A CMS Human Resources manager said they sent emails to Arlene, and many others in the same boat, back in June telling them they had their jobs back in the fall. It’s for that reason that CMS is protesting the unemployment payout.
NewsChannel 36 Reporter Bill McGinty tried to question CMS Manager Suzanne Carpino about why the district waited 33 days to respond to Trefil’s unemployment insurance claim when state law says they have to respond within 10 days.
Bill was told, “No comment.”
“There is a problem, a real serious problem,” Trefil said.
On Friday NewsChannel 36 learned that the 10 day state deadline CMS was supposed to adhere to is off the table because this case involves “reasonable assurance.”
The district contends that Trefil and the other teachers and teacher assistants who collected unemployment benefits this summer had a “reasonable assurance” of returning to work in the fall like they do every year. Trefil and the others say they were terminated and have a letter saying so.
CMS says it sent the teachers emails in both June and July telling them they had their jobs back, but at the hearing couldn’t produce the exact email sent to Trefil. The Employment Security
Commission says there is no 10 day deadline if the state paid out benefits based on an untruth or mistake.
ESC says they have an obligation to investigate.
A decision on the hearing is expected within a week.