Family of teen who died in San Ramon PE class reaches settlement with school district

Bay Area

SAN RAMON, Calif. (KRON) – A financial settlement has been reached between the family of a young man who lost his life while participating in a physical education class and the East Bay school district being sued for his death.

On Tuesday, the attorney representing the boy’s family tells KRON4 the settlement does not remove the pain of losing a son

“This is a tragic loss. Words cannot describe what happened here and it was preventable,” Andrew Schwartz, the Curry family attorney, said.

An $8-million settlement has been reached between the family of 15-year-old Benjamin Curry and the San Ramon Valley Unified School District. 

Back on March 8, 2018, the San Ramon Valley’s high school freshman drowned in the school’s swimming pool during a physical education class while his teacher was on duty.

“The case has been resolved. We reached a settlement and it was formally approved last Friday,” Schwartz said.

Curry family attorney Andrew Schwartz says the case was set for trial next week but he believes settling with the school district will spare Benjamin Curry’s parents the anguish of having to relive their son’s tragic death in a contentious courtroom setting.

“Well, as I have told everybody they are relieved that the litigation is over but the pain of this loss is never going to go away and there is nothing that’s going to make it go away,” Schwartz said. 

He says the settlement does not include any structural changes for teachers of swimming classes in the San Ramon Valley Unified School District but he is hopeful things will be different as a result of what happened.

“I think they are going to be reevaluating their policies and procedures and what went wrong. We learned a lot about that and I think the school learned about that as well but I don’t know that it was necessarily part of the settlement. What it’s really about is Ben Curry. About his loss. About what a wonderful young man he was and how he will not only be missed by his family but the entire community,” Schwartz said.

We reached out to the San Ramon Valley Unified School District for their response to the legal settlement. 

We received no comment.

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