Government figures show that schools across Wales have paid out over £800,000 in accident compensation claims over the last five years.
London, UK -- (SBWIRE) -- 08/22/2013 -- Schools across Wales have paid out more that £800,000 in accident compensation claims over the last five years according to figures recently released by Welsh Councils. In total 312 successful accident compensation claims were made against the country’s schools between the 2008-09 and 2012-13 academic years.
The claims range in severity and cost from £10,500 paid out of r a pupil who was ‘playfully pushed’ into a window and a £1,000 pay out for a child who was splashed with hot food. Some of the more trivial claims reported included one for a child running into a set of goalposts, one from a pupil who slipped on playground ice, and another for a pupil who got a splinter in his bum.
Of the twenty Welsh councils who submitted information only three, Ceredigion, Monmouthshire and Swansea had not been the recipient of a single accident compensation claim in their schools during the last five years. Two further councils, those of Powys and Blaenau Gwent had each received claims, but had not (at the time of providing figures) made any pay-outs.
Thirty per cent of the £800,000 paid out by Welsh Schools has come from those in the Newport area, with the council having received 44 claims in the last five years, leading to a total pay-out just short of a quarter of a million pounds. The schools of Rhondda Cynon Taf have also paid out a sizable figure for accident compensation claims with £189,934 of the total coming from the region. The Council facing the most claims was that of Cardiff, which had 74 separate accident compensation claims brought against it by pupils in the five year period.
Senior figures in Wales have suggested that the figures are indicative of a ‘claim culture’ developing in the UK. Whilst some of the claims may well have been genuine, there is the concern that many were being made fraudulently or exaggeratedly in order to try and make money. Speaking to the BBC, who obtained the figures, Conservative Shadow Education Minister Angela Burns said “We have to stop it. Sometimes things do happen, accidents do happen, but there’s an awful lot of ridiculous stuff going on. Don't we want our children to grow up to be healthy and enjoy being outdoors? It's about balance and common sense."
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