Parents should reasonably expect that their child is safe and protected while at school. The law protects this expectation, as schools become a child’s guardian during school hours. As a guardian, schools are bound to protect students from foreseeable harm. Failure to supervise students can leave schools open to liability for injuries that students sustain while on campus.
Students who are not adequately supervised while at school are susceptible to a range of injuries. It is foreseeable that students without supervision could sustain injuries on the playground, with unsafe equipment, or even from altercations with other students.
When school negligence is to blame for a student’s injury, the school should be held responsible. Not only is it fair to compensate the student for the injuries that should have been prevented, but taking action against negligent schools will also help to ensure a safer environment for future students.
If you’re facing a situation involving school-related injuries, Mesa personal injury lawyer Jared Everton can help you navigate your legal paths.
Common School Injuries in Arizona
Common school injuries include bus accidents, sports injuries, playground injuries, sexual assaults, shaken baby syndrome, abusive head trauma, burns, cuts, eye injuries, broken bones, head injuries, brain injuries and brain damage from falls. Also, school violence can result in severe injury, sexual assault or death.
If your child has been injured due to a school’s negligence, contact experienced school injury lawyer Jared Everton for a free consultation today.
What is School Negligence?
Most parents drop their children off at school early in the morning and don’t pick them up until late in the afternoon. Those same parents drop their kids off with the faith that they will be safe and protected for 6-7 hours every day, and even longer if their children participate in after-school activities. This faith is not unfounded; it is the school’s legal responsibility to keep all children in their care safe from harm, and failure to do so is considered negligent supervision.
Even though schools are required to properly supervise all students, devastating accidents continue to happen at schools around the country. 4 million school children are injured while at school every year. School children of all ages are made victims of avoidable injuries, lost innocence, and preventable attacks every day.
When the negligent supervision of school districts, and their staff results in attacks, injury, or death, children have legal rights. If your child has been injured while at school, and their injury is the direct result of inadequate supervision, it is in your best interest that you contact an Arizona school negligence attorney who can protect your child’s rights.
By calling a professional with experience handling school injury cases, you are protecting your child and countless other children from suffering the same fate again.
Examples of common school injuries in Arizona include:
- Broken bones
- Head injuries
- Sports injuries
- Gym or physical education injuries
- School bus accidents
- Playground injuries
- Sexual assault
- Brain damage
- Burns & cuts
- Eye injuries
When an injury results at a school from a situation that would not have occurred if proper supervision had been provided, liability to the school may be enforced. The school injury attorneys at JacksonWhite will fight tirelessly for your child if he or she has been injured at school due to negligent supervision.
Duty to Report Child Abuse
Child abuse can occur at any time by any one, and it’s important that each case is reported to the proper authorities. Listed below is a statute that states how and when a child abuse case is to be reported.
A.R.S. § 13-3620(A): This statute requires that any person who “reasonably believes that a minor is or has been a victim of physical injury, abuse, child abuse, a reportable offense or neglect that appears to have been inflicted on the minor by other than accidental means or that is not explained by the available medical history as being accidental in nature or who reasonable believes there has been a denial or deprivation of necessary medical treatment or surgical care or nourishment with the intent to cause or allow the death of an infant who is protected under section 36-2281 shall immediately report or cause reports to be made of this information to a peace officer or to child protective services in the department of economic security, except if the report concerns a person who does not have care, custody, or control of the minor, the report shall be made to a peace officer only.”
Child abuse reports are to be made over the phone or in person immediately. These reports will be followed up by a written report within seventy-two hours.
If a child abuse case is found to be incorrect, the individual who reported it is protected by the law both civilly and criminally.
Sexual Abuse and Harassment of Children in Arizona
Reported cases of sexual abuse in the United States have been increasing. Teachers, coaches, and church officials have been at the forefront of several public scandals, bringing to light the potential dangers that young children may face every day.
Most school teachers, coaches, and counselors are respected authority figures and hold a great deal of power over the students in their care. Sadly, many of these figures manipulate their power for their own twisted and despicable desires. The teacher or school staff member gains the trust of the student and then uses their authority to sexually influence the child.
Dealing with Molestation, Abuse and Harassment
Even worse, the adult continues to manipulate the student afterward, assuring them that if they tell anyone what happened, they will be punished and no one will believe them. And tragically, that is often the case. It’s common for communities to rally around the accused teacher or coach, and the victim who spoke out is then alienated and rejected.
The school sexual assault attorneys at JacksonWhite Law have experience dealing with assault in public schools, and know how to best handle the situation so that your child feels that their voice is heard and that they feel safe and protected.
Proving Negligence with Sexual Abuse
When a child is sexually molested, abused, or exploited, it can often be contributed to negligence. The fact that sexual abuse still occurs frequently in school, churches, and daycares across the country is disheartening and tragic, and the sexual abuse attorneys at JacksonWhite are dedicated to helping clients who have been victims of such atrocious crimes.
Victims of sexual abuse crimes can pursue compensation for medical expenses, psychological therapy, and pain and suffering.
Arizona Pre-School Negligence
Due to the young age of pre-school students, accidents are more prone to occur at pre-schools than at schools with more mature children. Young children are uncoordinated and clumsy, making them susceptible to falls and playground injuries. Because of their awkwardness, inexperience, and naivety, pre-school students require additional attentiveness and supervision from their teachers.
Understanding Pre-School Injury Risks
Behavioral problems are common amongst children of a young age, and pre-school teachers should understand that behavioral attributes can contribute to the risk of an injury. Kids with strange behavior tendencies are harder to manage and may create dangerous situations for themselves and other children.
The Arizona pre-school accident attorneys at JacksonWhite can help protect your child’s rights if they have been injured at pre-school due to the problematic behavior of another student. It is a teacher’s duty to anticipate a student’s bad behavior if that student is known to act inappropriately.
Additional environmental safety precautions must be taken when dealing with pre-school students, as their young age prevents them from understanding dangers around them. Pre-school teachers have to supervise their students attentively at all times to avoid injuries.
Do You Have a Pre-School Negligence Case?
When a pre-schooler is injured because they were unattended, negligence has been committed and legal action can be taken. The personal injury team at JacksonWhite Law can easily identify whether or not negligence was the cause of your child’s injuries, and if it can be determined that your child’s teacher failed to supervise them correctly, compensation may be owed to your family.
Failure to anticipate and prevent a problem can be considered as pre-school negligence if, under the exact same circumstances, a reasonable and prudent person would have been able to foresee the same incident and respond appropriately. The accident attorneys at JacksonWhite have experience successfully representing clients in negligent lawsuits, and understand how to prove negligence in order to win their clients maximum rewards.
Child Allergy Injuries
When it comes to child allergies, responsibility falls on the child, the child’s family, and the school. Responsibility first falls on the child’s family. The child’s family must do the following:
- Notify the school of the child’s allergy
- Work with the school to develop a plan that accommodates the child’s needs
- Provide written medical documentation that describes instructions and medications as described by a physician
- Teach your child about their food allergy and what foods are unsafe
- Give the school emergency contact information
Once the school has been notified of a student’s life-threatening food allergy, it then becomes their responsibility to develop policies and procedures that will reduce a student’s exposure to allergens, and treat allergic reactions.
The school nurse must also create an individualized health care plan for the student before he or she begins school, or immediately after the student is diagnosed with a life-threatening allergy. After completing the individualized health care plan, the nurse must conduct a meeting with the food service manager, the student’s parents, the student, and the student’s teacher.
Schools should also ensure that any staff members who work with the student receive basic education regarding food allergies, prevention, and management of allergic reactions.
Once the school has taken precautions and is aware of the student’s allergy, it now becomes the responsibility of the student to prevent an allergic reaction. The student can prevent an allergic reaction by:
- Not trading food with others
- Not eating any foods with unknown ingredients
- Being proactive in the management of their food allergy
- Notifying an adult if they believe they have eaten something they are allergic to
There are various local regulations and licensing requirements that daycare facilities need to abide by in order to operate in good standing. These regulations are meant to ensure a safe environment for the children being cared for, and should also allow for the caregiver to provide adequate supervision to all of the children they are responsible for.
Due to the extremely young ages of children who are cared for at daycare centers, negligent supervision occurs more often than at facilities who handle older kids. The negligence and injury team at JacksonWhite can help you protect your child’s rights if they have been injured while under the supervision of a facility’s staff.
Daycare Supervision and Negligence
All children have unique needs depending on their age, physical structure, mental functionality, and behavioral tendencies. What is considered as proper supervision for one child may not be proper supervision for another, even if they are the same age.
Daycare employees are responsible for recognizing the factors that cause a child to require additional supervision. A daycare center may have too many children, preventing otherwise responsible staff from paying acceptable attention to all of the kids.
On the other hand, a supervisor at a daycare may be preoccupied by a number of things, distracting them from keeping the children safe from harm. No matter what caused the injury, if it occurred because of improper or negligent supervision, the injury attorneys at JacksonWhite Law can fight to earn you compensation.
Focusing on the Responsibilities of the Daycare
Children in daycares, between the ages of 0 and 5, are more likely to be seriously injured or hospitalized due to a fall than from another form of injury. This is because extremely young children tend to fall head first, consequence of the head-to-body ratio, their underdeveloped reflexes and poor coordination.
Children in their early years are vulnerable to serious injury or death from falling, especially if they were to fall head first down a flight of stairs. It is the responsibility of the daycare staff to protect your children from damaging and deadly falls, and failure to do so is blatant negligence.
At JacksonWhite Law, we can help you and your family if your child has been seriously or critically injured in a daycare falling accident.
Determining Daycare Negligence
Common injuries, like cuts, scrapes, and bruises, can happen frequently in daycares; small children can be expected to get in a bit of trouble now and then. It’s when seriously damaging injuries occur, such as broken bones, brain damage, sexual abuse, paralysis, or death is it in your best interest to contact an daycare accident attorney to discuss your situation.
Compensation can be awarded for medical expenses, physical or emotional therapy, and pain and suffering. If you choose to work with the talented and knowledgeable team at JacksonWhite Law, you can rest assured that your case will be handled with discrepancy and sensitivity.
Our accident attorneys know how scary it can be for a child to talk about their traumatic incident with a stranger, and will make sure your child feels safe and comfortable throughout the entire process.
Need Help Proving a School’s Negligence?
At JacksonWhite Law, we work relentlessly to explore all angles of your case. We’ll work to maximize your compensation and lessen the impact of the accident on you and your family.