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£20 million paid in teacher compensation claims

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Mishaps and accidents at work in 2010 have seen teachers paid out in the region of £20 million in compensation for injuries, dispute awards and criminal damage, so says a report in the Guardian online education section.
One English teacher has been awarded £156,000 in compensation through two out of court settlements.
50-year old Joyce Walters worked at an adult education centre in north London. She often struggled to make herself heard in the classroom due to the noise outside and eventually had to give up her job after developing nodules on her vocal chords. She can now only speak for a short period before she suffers a sore throat and hoarse voice, even though she has been through several months of speech therapy.
Requests for help ignored by employers
The teacher repeatedly asked her employers for help, but her requests were not met with any attempt to rectify the situation. The settlements she received included £11,000 which was awarded after taking the council to a disability discrimination employment tribunal, and £145,000 in personal injury compensation for her life altering condition.
Another teacher was awarded £200,000 after slipping on a grape in a stairwell. The accident led to the aggravation of an existing condition which eventually resulted in having to give up work.
Teachers face a range of dangers in the workplace which can lead to accidents. Unruly pupils and unsafe working environments are just some of the risks posed.
When an accident occurs, the first step is to determine where the blame lies. In some cases, the matter becomes a case for the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority, for example where a child’s actions that resulted in a teacher’s injury are deemed criminal. In other cases, such as with Joyce Walters, the employer may be found negligent, and this will usually be the local authority.
At Stephensons, we have personal injury lawyers on our team who have specific experience in pursuing accident compensation claims against local authorities where teachers and civil servants have suffered injuries at work. You can speak to us in complete confidence, and you’ll be put directly through to a specialist. Call 01616 966 229.
By personal injury solicitor and Stephensons’ Partner, Kate Sweeney