Mary BROWN, Individually and On Behalf of her Minor Child Ernest Lanis Brown
Katherine TESACK, Individually and as the Administratrix of the Estate of her Minor Children Leonard Tesack and Keith Tesack; Beverly Preston, Individually and as the Administratrix of the Estate of her Minor Child Gerald Preston, and the Orleans Parish School Board.
No. 90-C-0071.
Supreme Court of Louisiana.
September 6, 1990.
Rehearing Denied October 18, 1990.

During recess on August 28th, 1984 Leonard Kisack who was thirteen and Gerald Preston who was over twelve, found four used cans of flammable duplicating liquid behind Henderson H. Dunn Elementary School’s dumpster. The school was a part of the Orleans Parish School Board and directly by the Desire Housing Project. The boys, who lived in the Desire Housing Project, began using the flammable liquid to create small fires. After Gerald returned to the dumpster for more liquid, he and Leonard poured the liquid onto an already burning plastic milk carton. As Ernest Brown came walking by, he was struck with a “fireball” in the chest which severely burned Ernest over his body and face.

Decision and Rationale:
The trial court held that Orleans Parish School Board and particularly Henderson H. Dunn Elementary School had a duty to safely and properly dispose of the duplicating liquid. The trial court concluded that the duplicating liquid was in fact placed there by an employee. However, the court stated the plaintiff “failed to show a complete breach of the duty." The plaintiff could not prove how long the duplicating liquid was in the dumpster. Originally, the school board was to be responsible for ninety percent of Brown’s injuries while Preston and Kisack for ten percent. During an appeal however, the court found the school board was responsible for fifty-five percent, Preston for thirty-five percent and Kisack for the original ten percent.

Impact on Education:
This trial impacts education because it shows how responsible we must be as employees of the school district. If we see the grounds are not being kept or the dumpsters are overflowing or most importantly that there is a harmful substance left unattended on school ground, it is our responsibility to report it and make sure it gets cleaned up. If we leave things and someone gets hurt because we didn’t report it, we can be held accountable for that.

Quiz Question: T/F
The school board was held responsible for more than half of Brown’s injuries during both the original case and the appeal.

Seth Jacobs
Rebekah Watson