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I Was Fired Because of Going to School

by T.
(New Jersey)

I was working as a CNA and my job told me I had 6 months to go to school and bring my certification in.

But while going to school my job always magically, put me on the schedule during the hours I had to go to school and if I called out they cut my hours.

Because I needed the money for school, I went to work and missed a lot of school instead, and then they said I couldn't go back on the schedule until I finished school. I still had two and half months left though, to bring my certification in.

Can I collect unemployment?

What Were You Fired For?

I doubt I can be the only confused about what you were actually fired for.

Except for what you told me about your employer giving you six months to bring in a certification for something, or another (I'm just assuming it wasn't a CNA certification since you say that is what you were working as) my first thought is you might be trying to say you were terminated for unacceptable attendance for the times you did call in when the work schedule because that conflicted with your school schedule.

However, because you suggested whatever training certification you were working toward was being required by your employer .. and at your own expense, and you repeated twice the employer took you off the schedule as some sort of punitive measure, in the event it was in response to you calling off to a point you finally violated the employer's attendance policy, being removed from the schedule entirely .. until you finish school, despite this happening two and half months early, doesn't make good
sense for an employer to argue misconduct.

Given I am really a bit confused about what the real facts might be here, I think if you were to file for unemployment benefits an employer might respond in a few different ways that would make sense to me .. if not entirely good sense.

1. The claimant is still employed.

2. The claimant was discharged for violation of the employer's attendance policy.

3. The claimant voluntarily quit to attend school.

My advice, if you want me to help you arrive at some sort of answer for yourself is to stop cluttering up the issue with what isn't as relevant as the circumstances leading to the final incident.

You need to tell me something relevant that allows me to focus my attention on an issue .. other than those I can imagine. Right now I'm wondering if the problem for you collecting unemployment couldn't be found in the non-monetary chartbook under the heading, Treatment of Students

All you need to glean from that chart for now, is how New Jersey Unemployment may treat you .. about a conditional eligibility. Students begin an unemployment claim with a constant basic eligibility question. The state always wants to know if a claimant is able and available to work .. look for work and accept suitable work if offered.

If an employer is insisting someone go to school to maintain their employment, but then doesn't work with that employee to also help them maintain a scheduled balance to accomplish both working and certification .. then maybe .. one might have the beginnings of a valid argument .. for the NJDOL .. if in fact you were discharged for going to school.


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