Schools are legally responsible for students’ safety

On Behalf of | Aug 26, 2016 | Premises Liability

As parents throughout Mississippi send their kids back to school, they worry about their safety. Schools are responsible for the physical and emotional well-being of their students. However, sometimes, they don’t live up to that responsibility. If a child is harmed or worse, it may be possible to hold school administrators, teachers, other employees and the school district itself liable.

Schools are responsible taking a “reasonable amount of care” to provide a safe environment for students and staff. No school can be expected to prevent young children from falling and skinning their knees occasionally. However, if there is faulty or dangerous playground equipment, an unrepaired hole in the playground, artificial grass made out of unsafe material or inadequate adult supervision, that’s another matter.

That extends to bullying and harassment. Even though school administrators and teachers are more aware and receive more training in the prevention of bullying that they did when most of us were growing up, it’s still an issue. Just this month, a heartbreaking story made the news of a 13-year-old boy who took his own life after suffering relentless bullying at his Catholic school. In a note that he wrote before he hanged himself in his home with a belt, he said in part that his teachers “didn’t do anything” to stop the bullying, some of which was about his weight.

If you have concerns regarding your child’s physical or emotional well-being at school, you should immediately talk with school administrators. If nothing is done, it may be wise to consult an attorney to determine whether you have a legal course of action. You shouldn’t wait until your child — or someone else’s is unnecessarily harmed.

Source: Findlaw, “School Safety Legal Issues and Laws,” accessed Aug. 24, 2016

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