Pub. date: 2006 | Online Pub. Date: September 15, 2007 | DOI: 10.4135/9781412939584 | Print ISBN: 9780761930877 | Online ISBN: 9781412939584| Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.About this encyclopedia
Charles J. Russo
Perhaps the greatest daily challenge facing educators is how to avoid liability for accidental injuries that children suffer in schools. For a school system to be liable for negligence, an injured party must satisfy the four elements of negligence: duty and the related principle of foreseeability, breach, injury, and causation. Absent a legal relationship with another, there is no legal duty to help a stranger. It is thus important to recognize that an educator who acts within the scope of his or her duties, whether in school or at a school-related activity, has a duty to assist all children in a group even if a teacher does not know a student personally. This duty, which is based on an educator's legal relationship with a school board, may not be limited to children (or others) from the building where the teacher works. Once a legal relationship is present, an educator has ...