Negligence on the duty of care
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The issue of concern here is negligence on the duty of care. In this paper, the major legal issue is whether the defendant (teacher/school) breach their duty of care by not providing a safe environment. For instance, considering the case of Victoria v Bryar, Mr. Keyte gave reasonable care to a student who lost sight as a result of pellets fired by another student (The & Russo, 2018). Because the teacher did not impose classroom discipline, Keyte did not take the appropriate measures, despite the fact that he was in a position of authority. He failed to do so, which led to Bryar sustaining an injury to his eye.
As a result, this same State of Victoria was found to be responsible for the plaintiff’s losses as a result of vicarious liability. The determination of liability will be based on whether or not a rational person or, in this case, a reasonable instructor would have acted in the same manner given the same set of circumstances (The & Russo, 2018). Teachers are responsible for effectively supervising students. This may occur on playgrounds, sports fields, classrooms, and field trips (Mccoy et al., 2017). Physical damage produced by an omission or act is the most prevalent kind of harm sustained by students that become plaintiffs in court (Mccoy et al., 2017). The connection between teachers and students imposes a duty of care on teachers. This commitment is not absolute; it only applies where the likelihood of harm is reasonably foreseeable. The higher the danger or likelihood of damage, the greater the teacher’s duty.
Paragraph 1 defendant
A defendant is a person who is either accused of committing a crime or who is the target of civil litigation (Teacher/School in this scenario) (Dodson, 2018). Thus, a duty of care arises when a person is placed in such a position with respect to another that any reasonable person would immediately recognise that even if they do not employ ordinary diligence and skill in their conduct with respect to those circumstances, will cause danger as well as injury to the individual or assets of the other and a duty arises to avoid such danger (Dodson, 2018). Therefore, in our case, the student took the task not by force but took it voluntarily. The school thereby cannot be blamed for any fault since there is no reasonable evidence of breach of duty of care since the child’s injury is just a mere accident. This corresponds with the principle of the neighborhood. The defendant must thus take reasonable precautions to prevent acts or omissions reasonably foreseeable to cause harm to a neighbor. However, this is not the case in this scenario; therefore, no party should be deemed fault.
Paragraph 2 plaintiff
The student (a 12-year-old girl) took the task not by force but voluntarily. A plaintiff is indeed the person that commences a judicial action (the 12-year-old girl in this scenario). The plaintiff pursues a legal remedy in this manner (Dodson, 2018). If this inquiry is successful, the court will render a verdict in the plaintiff’s favour and issue the necessary court order. The claim for damages for negligence emerges on the day the plaintiff suffers a loss (the day the girl gets injured during a physical education lesson) (Mccoy et al., 2017). Therefore, regarding the elements of negligence, there is no breaching of duty since there was no force imposed during the incident. To establish the last component of negligence, the plaintiff must show a meaningful connection between the defendant’s conduct, omission, or breach of duty as well as the injury. The school, in this case, is therefore not deemed fault for the plaintiff’s injury since it is assumed that the injury was just an accident since the child used to dance in the same field previously without any harm.
Legal Alternative 1
The first legal alternative is litigation. Litigation is the action or process of initiating or defending a lawsuit in court. Education is not exempt from the growing prevalence of litigation in all spheres of society (Mishra, 2021). Professionals are increasingly held responsible for their activities. Based on the growth in litigation, students and parents seem to be aware of their responsibilities and are much more eager to pursue them via the lawsuit process to seek compensation. A legal claim for damages may emerge in a variety of situations (Deffains et al, 2017). Litigation may result from violations of such Education Act, carelessness, contract breach, defamation, assault, and a growing field of scholastic negligence or malpractice. Physical injuries sustained by pupils as a result of a teacher’s negligence are simply one component of a lawsuit that a teacher or school might face.
Nonetheless, it seems to be the most frequent cause of legal action against a teacher (Mishra, 2021). Administrators and educators must understand how the legislation of negligence functions and what practices are permissible and inappropriate. As litigation within the education sector and society increases, it is the responsibility of schools and teachers to reduce the risk of damage to students, not just via an enhanced awareness of possible hazards but also by knowing how the law of negligence operates.
Legal Alternative 2
ADR seems the most effective alternative for solving the concern of this paper’s main argument. ADR refers to any methods of settling conflicts outside of the court system. ADR encompasses all procedures and methods of dispute settlement that occur beyond government control (Deffains et al., 2017). The most well-known ADR techniques include negotiation, mediation, arbitration, conciliation, and transaction. All alternative dispute resolution approaches have a similar aspect – allowing parties to find acceptable resolutions to their disputes outside of conventional legal but are controlled by distinct regulations. In negotiation, for example, there isn’t a third party which intervenes to assist the parties in reaching an agreement, unlike in conciliation and mediation, where the role of the 3rd party is to facilitate an agreement among the parties (Deffains et al., 2017). In arbitration, any third party will play a significant role since it will deliver a binding award.
In contrast, the third party does not enforce a binding conclusion during conciliation and mediation. If all ADR techniques are distinct, they shouldn’t be compared and contrasted since, in actuality, parties employ a combination of these many ADRs. For instance, parties may clearly state in their contracts that, in the event of a dispute, they will first offer up to an attempt at amicable resolution and, only if that fails, will resort to such a judicial method of resolution, such as arbitration as well as recourse to the State’s justice system (Deffains et al., 2017). ADRs consequently operate at many levels and possess a complimentary nature.
ADR is the recommended alternative to handle the case of a 12 years old girl who gets injured during a physical education lesson. This is because of the advantages it brings along with case solving as opposed to litigation (Deffains et al., 2017). These primary benefits of ADR are its speed, secrecy, and adaptability. Public tribunals might be requested to assess the legitimacy of ADR techniques. However, they seldom reject ADR rulings as well as awards if the conflicting parties made a legitimate contract to adhere to them (Mishra, 2021). The dominant form of conflict settlement is crucial in a case where the duty of care is less crucial than negotiation. While arbitration and mediation are the two most well-known types of ADR, bargaining or negotiation is nearly typically used to settle a conflict. Parties are able to meet in order to resolve an issue via negotiation.
The primary benefit of this kind of conflict resolution is that the parties retain control of the process and, indeed, the resolution. Negotiation is far less formalised than other forms of ADR and allows a great deal of flexibility (Mishra, 2021). Considering that the girl was almost adolescent and mature, the teacher’s or the school’s duty of care cannot be much compromised in this case. This necessitates choosing a negotiation form of ADR to handle the situation since the school is under no critical fault in association with the student’s injury.
Overall, neither party should be deemed regarded defective in this scenario. The school would violate its duty of reasonable care if indeed the environment had not been safe such as if it wasn’t maintained correctly and also was slippery or otherwise looked to impose harm to the girl. But in this scenario, the school wouldn’t, as the girl falling may have been an accident, given it was a dance routine that she may have done several times, whereby there’s many rehearsals in the same area. To win a lawsuit charging negligence, this plaintiff must establish all components of negligence by the school just not having taken responsibility for the environment, which in this instance was not so since the environment was safe.
The allegations of the plaintiff could not be supported without a single element. In order to avoid reasonably foreseeable injuries, teachers and school officials must constantly maintain an acceptable degree of care. The teacher and/or institution can be liable for negligence if only they fail to follow the expectations of such a reasonable practitioner. For this situation, no party is held guilty and culpable of said case but is treated as simply a plain accident just at field, all safety considerations taken into account.