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Assaulted by a student

Discussion in 'Secondary' started by Cooker1973, Jan 31, 2019.

  1. Cooker1973

    Cooker1973 New commenter

    What are my options if I’ve been attacked by a student in school and now feel like I can’t return to work? I’m signed off with stress at the moment.
  2. Vince_Ulam

    Vince_Ulam Star commenter

    1. Report this crime to the police.
    2. Record &or diary any conversations you have with SLT about this matter and in any meeting bring your union representative.
    3. Be good to yourself and put up with no **** from anyone.

    SEBREGIS Lead commenter

    My question would be - what would you LIKE to do? What do you want from the school? But to start with:

    Stay signed off until you're better.
    Contact your union and at least record everything
    Insist that the school demonstrates that it is taking reasonable action to ensure you have a safe working environment, and is taking action against the student.
    If the assault was serious or had any physical effects, you might want to report it to the police. I'm not sure on this but I think that if you report something like this then it becomes harder for the school to ignore.

    Other than that - do whatever you need to to recover.
    JohnJCazorla and pepper5 like this.
  4. Cooker1973

    Cooker1973 New commenter

    I did all that you have suggested. I'm just wondering what I can do as compensation from the school for putting the student in my class in the first place with his history of violence in other schools. If I can't return why shouldn't I get compensation as it wasn't my fault. I'm having to think about supply which wouldn't of happened if the assault hadn't happened, if you understand what I'm saying?
    Catgirl1964 and pepper5 like this.
  5. pepper5

    pepper5 Star commenter

    Hi cooker

    You need legal advice which most people posting on here are not qualified to give.

    You could do some research initially and see if anyone has successfully brought a claim against a school for the situation you describe. You could phone your union or phone the Law Society and see if they know of any solicitors who specialise in this area of law. You might find a solicitor that would give half an hour free to see if you have a case. Your household insurance may have legal cover so check that out as well.

    Trust you feel better soon.
    JohnJCazorla likes this.
  6. sbkrobson

    sbkrobson Star commenter

    You need to be aware that the notion of compensation is supposed to make good a failure or omission which was not your fault.
    And so you say that the failure in this case is failure to enable you continuing in your job. That's fair enough. You need to medically certify that.
    However, your quest for compensation in this way also means that if you believe your only option is supply and that is their fault, you are placing yourself in a position of being far more likely to be assaulted. Why would you not be able to return to that place, and yet be able to go on supply,where every day is an unknown, and the kids have even less respect for you?
    Seeking compensation in the way you suggest makes no sense to me. What have you lost? What has it cost you? What has been permanently damaged?
    You do not say that the kid assaulted you and resulted in a severed finger and thereby cost you the ability to write. For example.

    If you cannot return to this place, it ought to be a settlement agreement you seek. That makes eminent sense. Wanting compensation however, comes across to me as a result of you being angry about it, rather than being able to demonstrate an actual loss.
    pepper5 and JohnJCazorla like this.
  7. Daredevil111

    Daredevil111 New commenter

    Make sure it is all formal. Reports. Documented. Police.
  8. rich_hodgetts

    rich_hodgetts New commenter

    Firstly I am sorry that you have experienced this situation - it is a small but tangible risk that we all face on a day to day basis.

    I think you have done the correct thing by reporting this to the police. As far as the question of compensation goes, and coming from a position of having no legal background I imagine it will centre around any negligence on the part of the school.

    You say that the student has a history of violence in other schools. Depending on the nature of this violent behaviour I would have expected the school to carry out a risk assessment and to have put in place measures as needed to minimise the risk to an acceptable level.

    The details of the assault and any injuries are important when considering what should happen next however this forum is certainly not the place to share them!

    At the end of the day if the assault on you could have reasonably been foreseen and the school have not put in place measures to minimise this risk then in your position I would feel I had been treated unfairly.

    Unless the school refuse to allow you to return, or you have been injured in such a way that you cannot continue to teach, I would be surprised if feeling unable to return to your place of work would be sufficient grounds for compensation.

    This is a very difficult situation and I hope with time you are able to return to your school, with their full support and continue teaching - in the overwhelming majority of schools assaults on staff members are very rare.
    pepper5 and JohnJCazorla like this.

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