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Jenny Mackenzie
Jenny Mackenzie,
Category: UK Law
Satisfied Customers: 6307
Experience:  Over 10 years experience in general legal matters
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My five year old daughter fell off the monkey bars at school

Customer Question

Hi my five year old daughter fell off the monkey bars at school on Monday. A lunchtime supervisor sent her and a friend to get a wet paper towel to put on her arm and sit in the classroom. My daughter spent the rest of the afternoon in class crying and complaining her arm hurt to staff who pulled the sleeve of her Cardigan up slightly and squeezed her arm a bit and said she'd be OK. When I picked my daughter up at usual time the teacher pulled me aside and told me my daughter had had a fall, put a wet paper towel on it but she had been crying on and off since it happened but she was sure she'd just worked herself up into a state about it. My daughter was as white as a sheet and sobbing so I had a look at her arm which was pale and mottled and her elbow and upper arm was swollen, solid and her arm was locked on a bent position. I took her straight to A&E where after xrays they discovered she had broken her elbow. i don't have enough space to carry on.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: UK Law
Expert:  Jenny Mackenzie replied 1 year ago.

Hello my name is ***** ***** I am happy to help you today, I am sorry about your daughters broken elbow. What would you like to know about this situation?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
The lunchtime supervisor has admitted she didn't see my daughter fall and no other adult witnessed it. in my opinion proper supervision of a class of 5 year olds on monkey bars would be to have a extra assistant stood next to the monkey bars to help prevent accidents like this. So I'm wondering if down to lack of supervision and no proper first aid or checks of my child I would have a case against the school for negligence?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Oh and also leaving my daughter in agony for the rest of the day rather than contact me to assess the situation
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
also no accident report was filled at school until 32hrs later when I notified the headmaster of the incident
Expert:  Jenny Mackenzie replied 1 year ago.

I can really understand why you are upset about this, as a parent of primary school age children myself I would want to know why I wasn't called if I was in your position.

I think you need to speak to the school about procedures for supervising children on the apparatus and whether it is considered to be the lunchtime supervisors job to do this.

Sadly whether the lunchtime supervisor was watching closely or not your daughter may have fallen and it is only possible to claim compensation if you can show that the accident was someone else's fault. This would be if the apparatus was faulty or if there was another factor which resulted in the fall.

Expert:  Jenny Mackenzie replied 1 year ago.

You can argue that the lack of supervision made the fall more likely so that should be your starting point.

You may want to speak to a high street personal injury solicitor to see if they would take it on on a no win no fee basis.

Expert:  Jenny Mackenzie replied 1 year ago.

I do think that a complaint should be made though as it is clear that procedures for contacting you and filling out the accident book have not been satisfactorily followed.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Thankyou for your help so far.Surely though If supervision was sufficient when my daughter called for help somebody would of been able to help her rather than her falling? I will check the schools policy on how many children are allowed to use the apparatus at the same time because if only a certain amount are allowed and the school have told me there is 1 supervisor per class then who would be supervising the other group of children. Surely as well the school should have done a risk assessment on the apparatus and decided five year olds probably don't have the upper body strength when on apparatus 6ft plus to sort themselves out if they get in a pickle therefore having a supervisor next to the monkey bars would be a good idea because they can either get the child down safely or help the fall be less severe
Therefore in my eyes the accident was preventable.
Expert:  Jenny Mackenzie replied 1 year ago.

I think this is why the policy needs to be looked at for the very reason you suggest.

If there is inadequate supervision then they should not be allowed to use the apparatus at all.

I think that if there is a gap in the care that ought to have been expected then there is a possibility of a claim. I just urge you to be realistic though as if it can be shown that even if a supervisor was present an accident could have happened (as sometimes they do) then the claim would fail.