Arlene Ackerman seeks unemployment benefits

PHILADELPHIA - November 29, 2011

She is currently in New Mexico with family, but others are outraged after the Philadelphia School District acknowledged that Ackerman had applied for unemployment benefits and shall receive them under her separation agreement.

"Given that the School District of Philadelphia has a separation agreement with the former superintendent we are following that agreement and will not be contesting the filing of the unemployment," School District spokesman Fernando Gallard said.

Under the agreement, Dr. Ackerman will receive $573 a week in unemployment benefits.

In a statement she gave Action News though a close associate, Dr. Ackerman says, "I loved my job with the School District of Philadelphia. I did not quit my job. I am not working right now, and therefore I am entitled to unemployment."

But Mayor Michael Nutter sees it differently.

In a statement late today, the Mayor says, "Given the financial crisis facing the Philadelphia School District and the nearly one million dollar settlement agreement that the former superintendent received, it's astounding to me that she's coming back to the District seeking unemployment compensation."

Jerry Jordan, the President of the Philadelphia Federation of Teachers, gave Action News his reaction, as well.

"I thought Halloween was last month and this is clearly a trick on the public and on the members of my union and other unions who were laid off and clearly, it sounds like a treat for her," Jordan said.

The school district says the unemployment money will come solely from the district which is self insured and not from any other source like the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.

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