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Injury risks for school employees

| Apr 17, 2020 | Workers' Comp |

Working in a school can be wonderful. So many teachers are passionate about helping kids and make a huge difference in their lives. However, working in a school poses unique challenges, including on-the-job injuries.

A study conducted by SFM, the former Minnesota State Worker’s Compensation Mutual Insurance Company, assessed the injury risks for different roles in schools. They looked at 8,000 claims across Minnesota’s school districts.

Who is most likely to be injured at a school?

The study found that men working in schools were more at risk of injury and the jobs that had the most injuries were the more physical ones. The topmost injury-prone role being food service. Following closely was transportation, then custodial jobs.

Within the classroom, the most at-risk job was special education assistant. Then, teaching assistant, other non-licensed staff, clerical workers and least at-risk was the licensed staff. Among the licensed staff, special education teachers had the most injuries.

What injuries typically happen at a school?

The most common injuries found at the schools are falls, slips and trips. The second most prevalent is strikes, either by an object or person. Following closely is strain injuries.

The study also broke down student-related injuries suffered by school employees. The most common ones were the result of a student acting out, holding 46% of the student-related injuries. They also found that the injuries that most often caused the employee to lose time at work were those that happened when playing with or helping and transferring students.

SFM’s study ultimately found that the most at-risk school employees are those who do not work in the classroom. However, those that are most at-risk for injury by students are special education assistants.