It was recently revealed through a Freedom of Informtion request that one town council has disbursed £57,000 in personal injury compensation awards resulting from accident claims filed by pupils who suffered injuries whilst attending the region’s schools.
The Rotherham Council was found to have paid out on the personal injury claims over the past five years to those schoolchildren who had either lost property such as jewellery and mobile phones, or sustained serious injuries. One of the largest compensation payments – £15,000 – was made to a young man who had been dropped by his schoolmates during a trust building exercise
One other large compensation award for £11,000 was paid out to another student who had been struck on the head when a nearby shelf had come away from the wall. Two other large payments of more than £1,000 each were paid to two schoolgirls – one who managed to slip on anti-slip matting and another who suffered a broken wrist in a trampoline accident.
Additional incidents that resulted in personal injury awards included one young girl who was struck in the face with a Frisbee, a schoolboy who suffered a cut knee during his PE class, and a boy who sustained scalding burns from hot custard.
In the wake of the revelation regarding the amount of compensation paid out by the borough council, one Campaign for Real Education spokesperson remarked that it was only proper that compensation claims were made if a student had been injured in an accident brought about by negligence. However the spokesperson also cautioned against the danger that a frivolous personal injury claim could be taken one step too far, resulting in compensation awards for relatively minor injuries.