Trumbull, Board of Education, school van company sued after teen allegedly gets out on Route 8 – CTPost

A Trumbull teen and his mother are suing the town of Trumbull, the Trumbull Public Schools Board of Education and school van company Durham School Services.

In their complaint, the plaintiffs claim the defendants were negligent and breached their duties in, among other things, their handling of the individual plan and protocols in place to keep the teen safe on a school van.

The lawsuit comes roughly two years after the teen was, according to the complaint, injured while on the school van and then, months later, got off the van while it was stopped on Route 8.

The complaint alleges that during the relevant time period, the minor suffered from “obsessive-compulsive disorder, attention deficit disorder, mood disorder, bipolar disorder, and he was nonverbal, and required constant supervision and management.”

The plaintiffs’ lawyer Mark Arons said the parents “want to spotlight how the system failed them.”

The lawsuit filed in Superior Court against the town, Trumbull Public Schools Board of Education and Durham School Services seeks $15,000 in monetary damages.

According to the lawsuit, the Trumbull teen was a special education student at Milestones Behavioral Services School, which has locations in Milford and Orange.

The suit alleges three separate incidents in which the teen injured himself while riding on a school van. Arons said the teen no longer attends the school.

According to the complaint, on Aug. 1, 2019, while riding in a van provided by Durham School Services, the teen broke a window with his head, injuring his head and sustaining abrasions and contusions to his face.

The complaint further alleges that on Nov. 12, 2019, the teen managed to get access to the fire extinguisher in the van and activated it.

Roughly a month later, according to the complaint, on Dec. 13, 2019, the driver stopped the van on Route 8 after the teen began banging his head (without a helmet) in the van.

The teen then managed to get out of the van while it was stopped and went onto the highway, the lawsuit states.

According to the lawsuit, the teen, who received special education services, had an individual education plan in place, including but not limited to the use of a helmet, the use of a seat belt and/or harness to secure him in his seat, and the use of padding on the van window.

The suit alleges the van company failed to comply with this plan and the town and/or the board of education failed to require the van company to comply with the plan. The suit also claims the van monitor was untrained or inadequately trained to manage and assist the teen.

The lawyer representing the town, school board and van company did not return calls and emails for comment. The defendants have not yet filed their response to the complaint.