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Philadelphia School District Financial Crisis Leaves Many Lives In Limbo

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(Philadelphia School District headquarters.  File photo by Mike DeNardo)

(Philadelphia School District headquarters. File photo by Mike DeNardo)

Mike DeNardo Mike DeNardo
Mike DeNardo, a veteran of KYW Newsradio for more than 25 years,...
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By Mike DeNardo

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Many of the 4,000 laid-off Philadelphia school employees are living in limbo, waiting to see whether the district can scrape-together enough money to hire them back.

Chris Donnelly had already started some badly-needed home renovations. But the counselor at Academy at Palumbo High School got into a bind once her refi company tried to verify her employment on July 1st.

“We called the district and we found out that you’re one of the layoffs. My heart just sank.” Donnelly said. “So I said, ‘Are we done? Is that what basically this means?’ Yeah, you really can’t refinance your home when you don’t have a job.”

Donnelly borrowed from relatives and is holding out hope she’ll be hired back.

Laid-off Masterman counselor Heather Marcus may have to choose a return to teaching if she wants a district job.

“I love my job and this is what I want to do,” Marcus said. “So do I wait and see what happens and will I have a position and will I be at Masterman or will I be at some other school or will I be teaching? It’s really overwhelming to even think about.”

She’s applied to a half-dozen suburban districts in the meantime, but hasn’t heard from any of them.

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