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Sunday, April 19, 2015

RACHEL A. PARSONS, ET AL. VS. MULLICA TOWNSHIP BOARD OF EDUCATION, ET AL. A-0643-14T4


RACHEL A. PARSONS, ET AL. VS. MULLICA TOWNSHIP BOARD OF EDUCATION, ET AL.
A-0643-14T4 3/30/15 
Plaintiffs sued the Board of Education and the school nurse for failing to report the results of a school vision acuity screening as required by N.J.A.C. 6A:16-2.2(k)(6). We hold the nurse was not immune under N.J.S.A. 18A:40-4.5 as it applies only to the Act requiring scoliosis examinations. We hold the nurse and the Board are immune under N.J.S.A. 59:6-4 of the Tort Claims Act (TCA) for "failure . . . to make an adequate physical or mental examination." A vision screening is a physical examination under the TCA, and failure to report the results is a failure to make an adequate examination.
Reporting the results is a ministerial act, but N.J.S.A. 59:2-3 and 3-2 only exempt ministerial acts from the general discretionary immunity in those sections, not the specific immunities in the TCA. N.J.S.A. 59:6-4 provides absolute immunity, including for ministerial acts. That specific immunity trumps the TCA's general liability provisions, which are subject to any immunity provided by law.