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Board of Education and Principal Immune From Liability In Lawsuit Involving Teacher’s Sexual Encounter with Student

In the case Student Doe v. Adkins, 2021-Ohio-3389, the Fourth District Court of Appeals found the trial court erred in denying a board of education and principal’s motion to dismiss in an action brought by a mother of a student whose child had a sexual encounter with a high school teacher.

Here, the Mother raised multiple claims on behalf of her child, including intentional infliction of emotional distress, negligence, negligence per se, assault, and battery. The appellants filed a motion to dismiss based on the Mother’s failure to state a claim in the Complaint. The trial court denied the motion to dismiss, and the appellants appealed, arguing that they were entitled to the motion to dismiss on the basis of political subdivision immunity. The Court of Appeals agreed.

The Court of Appeals held that the board and principal’s motion to dismiss should have been granted because both were political subdivisions immune from this lawsuit. The Court reasoned that because the Mother’s allegations involved policies and procedures of the school district and how they were implemented to provide for a safe environment for the students, the implementation of such policies and procedures did not constitute a proprietary function. As such, the Court found that there was no except to immunity here and the motion to dismiss should have been granted.

To read this article, click here.

Authors: Matthew John Markling and the McGown & Markling Team.

Note: This blog entry does not constitute – nor does it contain – legal advice. Legal jurisprudence is like the always-changing Midwestern weather. As a result, this single blog entry cannot substitute for consultation with a McGown & Markling attorney. If legal advice is needed with respect to a specific factual situation, please feel free to contact a McGown & Markling attorney.

 

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