Former high school football coach not back at work, despite passing of judge's deadline

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. — The attorney for an embattled former football coach said the coach is still not employed by Shelby County Schools.

Teli White’s attorney said the former Trezevant High School football coach was supposed to be back at work on Jan. 6, but that day has come and gone.

Because that didn’t happen, he said he thinks the district should be penalized.

White was fired from Trezevant in 2017 after a grading scandal. His termination was upheld by the Shelby County School Board a year later.

According to his attorney, a judge ordered the school district to reinstate White this semester. White has maintained his innocence in the grading scandal.

“I was winning at life with those children, and they didn’t need me to change no grades so they can win in life,” White said.

White was not in chancery court Wednesday morning, but his attorney Darrell O’Neal was. He spoke to a judge for a few minutes, discussing upcoming filings for the case.

After court, O’Neal would not speak to WREG on camera but did say White, despite a judge’s ruling, was not back to work by the 6th of January.

He said he has no idea what his client’s exact job would be or at what school.

O’Neal did say though, the former coach has no desire to get back on the field. He said White wanted to focus on his job as an educator.

Last Friday, White’s legal team filed paperwork saying the Shelby County Board of Education should be punished for not reinstating White by Jan. 6, claiming it was not accidental or inadvertent, the board acted willfully, and they should be sanctioned.

In addition, his legal team said White should be awarded attorney’s fees based on the board not complying with the court’s order.

An SCS spokesperson sent WREG the following statement about White:

The court’s decision has not yet been finalized.  Until that time, Shelby County Board of Education will continue to explore its legal options regarding the Teli White matter.

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