Rare lawsuit against school volunteers reveals CMS gap

Apr 1, 2018 by

Leesa Clardy was about to go to her children’s elementary school in February when her mail carrier delivered a COD package.

She paid the carrier $3.50, opened the package – and learned a fellow Eastover Elementary parent was suing Clardy in her role as a classroom volunteer.

“I was just blindsided,” Clardy recalls.

And there was another shock to come: Even though Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools taps more than 37,000 volunteers a year for everything from reading buddies to chaperones for out-of-state field trips, there’s no policy on the books to provide a legal defense when they’re sued. General Counsel George Battle III says that means he can’t represent them without action from the school board.

As for the suit that has forced the question, “it’s bizarre in a lot of respects,” Battle says. “That’s the most diplomatic way to say it.”

McDaniel has filed more than 50 lawsuits in Mecklenburg, Guilford and other North Carolina counties, against public bodies, lawyers, landlords and others she has done business with. Court records show she has been the subject of a “gatekeeper order” – a restriction that requires court approval to file lawsuits in order to prevent abuse of the process – which has been registered in numerous counties.

Source: Rare lawsuit against school volunteers reveals CMS gap | Charlotte Observer

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