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SUPERVISION, NEGLIGENCE AND LIABILITY OF SCHOOL PERSONNEL Bob Cohn General Counsel 07/31/2012.

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Presentation on theme: "SUPERVISION, NEGLIGENCE AND LIABILITY OF SCHOOL PERSONNEL Bob Cohn General Counsel 07/31/2012."— Presentation transcript:

1 SUPERVISION, NEGLIGENCE AND LIABILITY OF SCHOOL PERSONNEL Bob Cohn General Counsel 07/31/2012

2 School employees have a duty of care for students while under the jurisdiction of the school district.

3 Failure to exercise due care or failure to act as a reasonably prudent person would act under the same or similar circumstances may result in liability.

4 Four Elements of Negligence: Duty to protect students Failure to exercise an appropriate standard of care (breach of duty) Causationcausal link between the act (or failure to act). (Could the staff member have prevented the injury from occurring?) Damages, such as injury to the student or to his or her reputation.

5 Who may be liable for student injury: 1.The teacher whose negligence caused the injury. 2.The principal, if he/she could have prevented the injury. 3.The school district for whom the teacher is an agent.

6 The doctrine of in loco parentis (in place of a parent) applies to the care and supervision of Students. TEACHERS MUST ACT IN A MANNER TO AVOID INJURY AND UNDUE RISK.

7 Courts have generally held that teachers owe three basic duties to their students: 1.Adequate supervision 2.Proper instruction (e.g. students must be taught proper use of chemicals, how to play games, how to use equipment, etc.) 3.Maintenance of all equipment in reasonable repair.

8 Colorado Revised Statutes § (ee) allows boards of education to employ on a voluntary or paid bases teachers aides and other auxiliary, non- licensed personnel to assist licensed personnel in the provision of services related to instruction or supervision of children.

9 This statute requires licensed personnel to be ultimately responsible for the supervision and instruction of students.

10 To meet the requirements of adequate supervision teachers should not leave students unsupervised.

11 If a student is removed from the classroom for disciplinary reasons, he/she should be accompanied by an adult to an area established for supervising removed students.

12 Service providers must become totally familiar with Individual Health Plans and IEPs. Accommodations, modifications, and supervisory responsibilities must be specifically met.


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