COLUMBUS (AP) — The Ohio Supreme Court unanimously sided with three Toledo public school employees on Tuesday in a lawsuit brought by the parents of a kindergartener alleging that the employees acting recklessly by not preventing bullying by another student.
The parents of the child sued teacher Amanda Lute, Assistant Principal Cynthia Skaff and Principal Ralph Schade for allegedly failing to intervene to prevent an alleged series of bullying encounters from escalating, The Blade reported.
The parents, who are only identified by their initials in the lawsuit, claim that their child’s cheek was punctured with a sharpened pencil by another student.
Lute said that she did not discover that the victim had been poked in the cheek until four days after the alleged incident when the parents removed their child from the school.
Lute said that her desk was 10 feet from the table the two students shared and that she did not hear anything.
The Ohio and Toledo Federation of Teachers, Buckeye Association of School Administrators, Ohio Association for School Business Officials, Ohio School Boards Association, the Toledo Association of Administrative Personnel, and the city of Toledo filed briefs in defense of the employees and voiced concern over the precedent the case could take if it was allowed to proceed.
Justice Patrick Fischer wrote that the appellants presented evidence that they took steps to prevent bullying in the classroom.
Jennifer Dawson, the school’s district attorney, said that she was “extremely pleased with the court’s unanimous ruling.”
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