A 13-year-old boy, whose ear was "tightly gripped" and held by a teacher in class, has been awarded €17,500 damages against his school and the Dublin and Dun Laoghaire Education and Training Board.
Judge James O'Donohoe heard in the Circuit Civil Court on Tuesday that Logan Ryan was assaulted by a teacher while he sat at his desk last year in Deansrath Community College, Westbourne, Clondalkin, Dublin.
Barrister Conor Kearney, for the boy, told the court that the assault occurred in November last year and was followed by a second assault only three days later from the same teacher.
Mr Kearney, who appeared with Chris Horrigan of Blake Horrigan Solicitors, said the schoolboy, who is now aged 14, had been sitting at his desk when his teacher grasped the upper aspect of his right ear lobe and held it tight for about 10 seconds before releasing his grip.
He said the assault occurred on November 16th last year and on November 19th, while the boy was sitting leaning forward in his seat, the same male teacher leaned across and placed his forearm against the boy’s chest pushing him backwards.
Mr Kearney said the boy had been held in this backward position for about five seconds.
He said that in the aftermath of the first incident his right ear had become painful and discoloured at the point of contact by his teacher. He had also developed some back pain as a result of the second incident.
Since the incidents the boy had been fearful of meeting the teacher in his school grounds and had felt anxious while attending school. He had suffered pain, distress and discomfort.
The boy sued the defendants through his mother Sandra Ryan, of Kilronan Court, Clondalkin. Ms Ryan stated in an affidavit before the court that the teacher in question had written and apologised for his behaviour relating to both incidents.
Judge O’Donohoe approved a settlement offer of €17,500 on behalf of both defendants.