Nanaimo Ladysmith Public Schools’ board has been named as one of the defendants in a notice of civil claim related to an alleged 2016 bullying incident. (Cliff MacArthur/provincialcourt.bc.ca)

Nanaimo Ladysmith Public Schools’ board has been named as one of the defendants in a notice of civil claim related to an alleged 2016 bullying incident. (Cliff MacArthur/provincialcourt.bc.ca)

School board being sued over alleged bullying at Nanaimo high school

Civil case advanced through the court system Thursday, goes to trial in September

A student and his guardian are seeking damages from Nanaimo-Ladysmith school board, two students and one other person after an alleged bullying incident in 2016.

A notice of civil claim was filed in 2017 and the case has been going through the legal process since then. There was a pre-trial application filed in B.C. Supreme Court in Nanaimo on Thursday, March 11.

In the claim, the guardian alleges their child, at the time a John Barsby Secondary School Grade 10 student, was assaulted by two Grade 12 students on June 3, 2016 in the school hallway. The student suffered a concussion, headaches, facial lacerations, bruising and neck, shoulder and back injuries and he has a loss of attention span, quality of life and suffers from anxiety, the claim states.

The claim alleges the two students were “notorious bullies” who regularly engaged in verbal and physical abuse of students. In relation to the incident, the students’ actions were of a “malicious, oppressive and high-handed nature” and weren’t provoked.

According to the claim, the school district had an obligation to protect the plaintiff from danger “reasonably foreseeable” and fell short of “required standard of care” as it “failed to properly discipline” the two when it seemed that not doing so would lead to more bullying and abuse. The district was aware of the two Grade 12 students’ previous actions and didn’t discipline them properly, which could have acted as a deterrent, said the claim. The other respondent in the case had a duty to supervise and control the activities of one of the Grade 12s, the claim said.

In the district’s response, it agreed that an altercation involving the students occurred that June, but denied it occurred as per the plaintiff’s claim. It denied the plaintiff suffered injuries as a result of the run-in “as alleged or at all,” and denies knowing of the students’ reputation as “bullies.” All discipline, whether related to the incident or in general, was “reasonable and [was] administered in accordance” with school district regulations, the district claimed, and the incident couldn’t have been foreseen, as it was an “extraordinary event.”

In their responses, the man and the Grade 12 students claim the Grade 10 student “consented to engage in physical confrontation” with the other two as he dropped his backpack and began pushing one of the Grade 12s, one of whom had suffered numerous concussions in the past. While the plaintiff claims the man is a father of one of the two, the man denies that and says he was not in a position of authority concerning the student.

The plaintiff “was known to be abrasive [and] confrontational in activities that led to physical confrontations with his victims,” who included Barsby students, and prior to the 2016 incident, took part in a “prolonged campaign of cyber bullying” against one of the Grade 12 students and his peers, the responses said.

Among the damages sought by the plaintiff are compensation for wage losses and medical expenses in the past, present and future.

None of the claims by any of the parties have been proven in court. The trial is scheduled to begin Sept. 20.

In an e-mail, Nanaimo Ladysmith Public Schools said it had no comment as it is a legal matter.

READ ALSO: Nanaimo man’s $32-trillion lawsuit thrown out by B.C. Supreme Court

READ ALSO: Appeal Court says Mudge Island homeowners’ seawall has to go



reporter@nanaimobulletin.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Educationlawsuit

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Comments are closed

Just Posted

Alberni Valley Bulldogs’ goalie Luke Pearson stopped all 22 shots the Cowichan Capitals sent his way to collect a 5–0 shutout in B.C. Hockey League action, Saturday, April 10, 2021. (SUSAN QUINN/ Alberni Valley News)
BCHL: Pearson earns shutout in Bulldogs’ win over Cowichan Capitals

Alberni Valley will face Victoria Grizzlies Sunday, April 11 at 3 p.m.

A 3.0-magnitude earthquake occurred off Ucluelet just after 12:30 a.m. on April 10 and was reportedly felt as far south as Oregon. (Map via United States Geological Survey)
Quake off Ucluelet reportedly felt as far south as Oregon

Magnitude 1.5 earthquake also reported off Vancouver Island’s west coast hours earlier

Princess Elizabeth and her new husband, Prince Philip—behind the wheel—visited the Alberni Valley on the princess's inaugural visit to Canada. A photographer with Charnell Studios in Port Alberni captured the young newlyweds along the parade route on Oct. 25, 1951, months before Princess Elizabeth became Queen. Prince Philip died April 9, 2021, just shy of his 100th birthday. This photo is one of 24,000 in the Alberni Valley Museum's online archives, available for public viewing at https://portalberni.pastperfectonline.com. (PHOTO PN 13605 COURTESY OF ALBERNI VALLEY MUSEUM)
LOOK BACK: Prince Philip and his new bride visit Port Alberni

A special look back with the Alberni Valley Museum to honour the life of Prince Philip

John Ambrose Seward, 33, is described as Indigenous and five-foot-eight with short black hair and brown eyes. (Police handout)
John Ambrose Seward, 33, is described as Indigenous and five-foot-eight with short black hair and brown eyes. (Police handout)
High-risk sex offender banned from central Island, living in Vancouver: police

John Ambrose Seward, 33, has been released from prison under a number of conditions

Third-generation residential school survivor, poet and attorney Francine Merasty will be a featured author at Electric Mermaid Live Reads on April 16. (SUBMITTED PHOTO)
Residential school survivor and poet to read at Electric Mermaid

Electric Mermaid: Live Reads takes place online via Zoom on Friday, April 16 at 5:45 p.m.

B.C. Health Minister Adrian Dix and Premier John Horgan describe vaccine rollout at the legislature, March 29, 2021. (B.C. government)
1,262 more COVID-19 infections in B.C. Friday, 9,574 active cases

Province’s mass vaccination reaches one million people

Two-year-old Ivy McLeod, seen here on April 9, 2021 with four-year-old sister Elena and mom Vanessa, was born with limb differences. The family, including husband/dad Sean McLeod, is looking for a family puppy that also has a limb difference. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress)
B.C. family looking for puppy with limb difference, just like 2-year-old Ivy

Ivy McLeod born as bilateral amputee, now her family wants to find ‘companion’ puppy for her

A vehicle that was driven through the wall of a parkade at Uptown Shopping Centre and into the nearby Walmart on April 9 was removed through another hole in the wall later that night. (Photo via Saanich Police Department and Ayush Kakkar)
Vehicle launched into B.C. Walmart removed following rescue of trapped workers

Crews cut new hole in parkade wall to remove vehicle safely

Four members with Divers for Cleaner Lakes and Oceans were out at Cultus Lake on March 28 and 29 hauling trash out of the waters. (Henry Wang)
PHOTOS: Out-of-town divers remove 100s of pounds of trash from Cultus Lake

Members of Divers for Cleaner Lakes and Oceans hauled out 470 pounds of trash over two days

As of Saturday, April 10, people born in 1961 are the latest to be eligible for a COVID-19 vaccine. (Black Press files)
B.C. residents age 60+ can now register to get their COVID-19 vaccine

Vaccine registration is now open to people born in 1961 or earlier

A new saline gargle test, made in B.C., will soon be replacing COVID-19 nasal swab tests for kids. (PHSA screenshot)
Take-home COVID-19 tests available for some B.C. students who fall ill at school

BC Children’s Hospital plans to provide 1,200 kits to Vancouver district schools this April

Ruming Jiang and his dog Chiu Chiu are doing fine following a brush with hypothermia that saw several people work together to get them out of the Fraser River near Langley’s Derby Reach Park on March 25, 2021 (Special to the Advance Times)
Man finds men who rescued him from drowning in B.C.’s Fraser River

A grateful Ruming Jiang says he will thank them again, this time in person when the pandemic ends

The 10-part Netflix series Maid, which is being exclusively shot in Greater Victoria, was filming near Prospect Lake in Saanich last month. (Photo courtesy Fred Haynes)
Province announces $150,000 towards South Island film studio, fulfilling B.C. NDP promise

Investment to fund movie studio feasibility study at Camosun College

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Most Read