By Mike DeNardo and Steve Patterson

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Staffers at the Walter D. Palmer charter school, which shut down precipitously last month, are turning to the School District of Philadelphia in an effort to collect their final paychecks.

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A handful of Walter Palmer staffers — out of work since the charter abruptly closed its doors after losing a court fight with regulators over its funding — met today with the district’s charter school office and inspector general, saying Palmer owes them pay and their health coverage was terminated since the middle of November.

“People are losing their homes, they’re losing their vehicles, they’re not able to take care of their children,” says former Palmer staffer Sultan Ashley. “They don’t have medical coverage.”

Ashley says his group of 87 staffers is considering legal action.

Meanwhile, school district spokesman Fernando Gallard says there’s not much the district can do:

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“The Walter Palmer organization — the school — owes us (the school district) over $1 million at this point, and a number of things that they failed to pay.”

School founder Walter D. Palmer says the school is being liquidated to cover payroll and other liabilities.

“We intend to meet every obligation we possibly can,” he told KYW Newsradio late this afternoon.

The staff plans to take investigation to DA and State AG to see if criminal charges are likely. They also plan to file a class action lawsuit against both officials within the district and the charter.

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