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Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Ind. Decisions - 7th Circuit issues one Indiana decision today

In Hansen, Sondra v. Bd Trustees Hamilton SE School Corp (SD Ind., Judge McKinney), a 33-page opinion, Judge Kanne writes:

Dmitri Alano, a teacher and assistant band director at Hamilton Southeastern High School (“HSE”), engaged in an improper sexual relationship with a student. The student’s parents, the Hansens, filed suit individually and on behalf of their daughter against both Alano and the Hamilton Southeastern School Corporation (“HSSC”). They brought claims against both defendants under Indiana law, the Civil Rights Act of 1871, 42 U.S.C. § 1983, and Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, 20 U.S.C. § 1681 et seq. The district court granted summary judgment in favor of HSSC on all claims. The Hansens appeal, arguing that the district court erred by (1) granting summary judgment against them on their Title IX claim, (2) exercising supplemental jurisdiction over their state claims against HSSC, and (3) granting summary judgment against them on those state claims. We consider whether the district court’s decisions were proper, and we conclude that they were. * * *

III. CONCLUSION. The Hansens failed to demonstrate a genuine issue as to whether HSSC had actual knowledge of Alano’s misconduct for their Title IX claim. After dismissing the Title IX claim, the district court properly exercised supplemental jurisdiction over the Hansens’ state claims. The district court did not err by granting summary judgment against the Hansens on each of those claims. The Hansens did not establish a genuine issue as to whether HSSC knew or should have known of Alano’s misconduct, nor whether the school district acted negligently in light of any knowledge it may have had. Further, Alano’s misconduct was outside the scope of his employment as a matter of law. Therefore, we AFFIRM the district court’s decision granting summary judgment in favor of HSSC on all claims against it.

Posted by Marcia Oddi on December 23, 2008 12:30 PM
Posted to Ind. (7th Cir.) Decisions