In Dole v. Sulzicki, Howd & Ludorf, LLC Partners Thomas Gerarde and Kristan Maccini have convinced the Connecticut Appellate Court to affirm the granting of summary judgment based on governmental immunity in favor of the Town of Stratford Board of Education in a sexual abuse lawsuit. The minor Plaintiff was sexually abused by his math teacher (Sulzicki) during his elementary and middle school years. Virtually none of the activity occurred on campus, with most of it occurring at Plaintiff’s own home. The school administration had no knowledge of the activity until Plaintiff came forward and disclosed it to a school counselor.
Plaintiff sued the Bd. Of Education for negligence, vicarious liability for the acts of Sulzicki, and negligent supervision of Sulzicki. The Stratford Board of Education filed a Motion for Summary Judgment based on governmental immunity. The Motion was granted by the trial court, given that the acts of supervising students and teachers involved judgment and discretion, and Plaintiff was never identifiable to the Bd. of Ed or any adult supervisor as being at risk of an apparent imminent harm. Furthermore, the court held there was no vicarious liability owed by a Town or Bd. of Education to an employee, and there was no obligation to indemnify Sulzicki for her intentional acts of abuse. On appeal, the Connecticut Appellate Court affirmed, per curiam, and the judgment in favor of the Stratford Bd. of Education is now final.