Unless you’re living under a rock you’ve probably heard by now that the moon which circles the earth is going to be between the earth and the sun sometime this coming Monday, August 21.
Some schools have decided to close for the day. Others schools are requiring each student get a signed permission slip to go outside and watch the eclipse. Whatever your school is doing, it is important to follow the protocol they have laid out.
You should not take your class outside to watch the eclipse unless your school is allowing students to do so. If your school is not requiring students to get signed permission slips, make sure you talk with your school about what you should be doing to prepare for the event.
Best practice is to get something in writing, an email will suffice, on what they want you to do for the eclipse. It’s important that while you are outside with students you are supervising them closely. Further, you need to make sure all students have appropriate eyewear and receive proper instructions before going outside.
If an injury takes place or a student looks directly at the sun for an extended period, it’s important to remember that the MSTA Legal Services Department is here to help you.
Further, as an MSTA member, you have liability insurance coverage. You need to contact us shortly after an incident takes place so we can help you complete an incident report form to determine the exact coverage of the specific situation, as the final decision on insurance coverage is up to the insurance company.
If you have any questions about your liability for this unique day, or any other legal questions regarding your employment, please don’t hesitate to contact the MSTA Legal Services Department at 866-343-6186. We are here to answer your questions.