Unions win #163;18m-plus in payouts

2nd April 2010 at 01:00

A teacher scarred for life by a falling whiteboard and another who was injured after slipping on a painted playground frog were among hundreds of teachers to win compensation claims recently, reports show.

Records suggest unions won at least #163;18 million in claims for their members last year, although the figure is believed to be far higher as only selected claims are listed.

One of the highest payments went to a member of the NUT from the Midlands whose occupational therapist told his school he should only teach small groups after he suffered a nervous breakdown.

The teacher was awarded #163;250,000 after the school ignored the advice and put him in front of classes of "violent and disruptive" pupils, causing him to suffer a second breakdown.

The NUT also won a criminal injuries payout of more than #163;40,000 for a special needs teacher who suffered post-traumatic stress disorder after being bitten on the left nipple by a pupil in her reception class.

Other criminal injury claims included a teacher from Merseyside who won #163;4,000 after damaging her leg while chasing a youth who was trying to steal her car from the school car park.

Some of the most eye-catching compensation claims come from teachers who have suffered accidents at work, firing a warning shot across the bows of heads and local authorities who fail to follow health and safety regulations to the letter.

A music teacher from the South West was awarded #163;40,000 after her wrist was crushed in a door that blew shut on a windy day, impairing her ability to play instruments. Another teacher was struck on the head by a toilet cistern, an incident that cost the local authority #163;3,500.

Off school premises, one teacher was injured while carrying out a risk assessment at a museum, and another received a payout for scalding himself with coffee at a conference.

Of the total amount awarded to teachers, the NASUWT accounted for nearly #163;9 million in claims for accidents, criminal injuries and compromise agreements.

The Association of Teachers and Lecturers won nearly #163;1m in injury compensation and #163;4m in compromise agreements.

The Association of School and College Leaders won more than #163;4 million, a figure that has been rising steadily in recent years because of the numbers of compromise agreements it has secured for members.

FROM NIPPLES TO LOOS

#163;40k - For being bitten on the left nipple

#163;4k - For damage to leg while chasing youth trying to steal car from school car park

#163;3,500 - For being struck on the head by a toilet cistern.

Subscribe to get access to the content on this page.

If you are already a Tes/ Tes Scotland subscriber please log in with your username or email address to get full access to our back issues, CPD library and membership plus page.

Not a subscriber? Find out more about our subscription offers.
Subscribe now
Existing subscriber?
Enter subscription number

Comments

The guide by your side – ensuring you are always up to date with the latest in education.

Get Tes magazine online and delivered to your door. Stay up to date with the latest research, teacher innovation and insight, plus classroom tips and techniques with a Tes magazine subscription.
With a Tes magazine subscription you get exclusive access to our CPD library. Including our New Teachers’ special for NQTS, Ed Tech, How to Get a Job, Trip Planner, Ed Biz Special and all Tes back issues.

Subscribe now