ERIC Number: ED120946
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1975
Reference Count: N/A
School Official Liability: Wood v. Strickland.
French, Larry L.
In Wood v. Strickland, the Supreme Court held that a school board member is not immune from liability for damages if he knew, or reasonably should have known, that the action he took within his sphere of official responsibility would violate the constitutional rights of the student affected; or, if he took the action with the malicious intention to cause a deprivation of constitutional rights or other injury to the student. This is not a change in the Court's position, as it has always been the case that if one can establish "bad faith" or "malicious intent," then one substantiates a cause for compensatory and perhaps punitive award. Further, if one can establish that an official took action when he knew of his own mind that such action would violate the constitutional rights of a person, then one has met the burden of proof. The Court also indicated, however, that there must be a degree of "immunity" allowed if the work of the schools is to go forward and the "immunity" must be such that public school officials understand that action taken in the good faith fulfillment of their responsibilities and within the bounds of reason will not be punished. (Author/IRT)
Descriptors: Administrators, Boards of Education, Civil Liberties, Court Litigation, Due Process, Elementary Secondary Education, Federal Courts, Legal Responsibility, Students, Supreme Court Litigation
Not available separately, see EA 008 102
Publication Type: Reference Materials - Bibliographies
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Laws, Policies, & Programs: Wood v Strickland