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Parents of boy who drowned in school pool settle for $8M

Swimming Pool (FILE)
Posted at 2:01 PM, Feb 11, 2020
and last updated 2020-02-11 17:01:25-05

SAN RAMON, Calif. (AP) — A San Francisco Bay Area school district has reached a $8 million settlement with the family of a boy who drowned during his high school swim class, an attorney said Tuesday.

Andrew Schwartz, the attorney for the parents of Benjamin Curry, said that the San Ramon Valley Unified School District filed the monetary settlement Friday. Schwartz said the trial was set to begin Feb. 18 in Contra Costa County Superior Court, the East Bay Times reported.

“I’m relieved for the family that the litigation is over, but their pain and suffering are never going to go away,” Schwartz said of Karen and Thomas Curry.

The district was not immediately available for a statement regarding the settlement.

Benjamin Curry drowned May 8, 2018, as he and 56 classmates were told to tread water for three minutes at the end of their physical education class at San Ramon Valley High School in Danville.

Police and coroner’s officials determined that Curry died from an accidental drowning, but his family was upset, alleging school officials allowed a rumor that he killed himself to linger too long.

In its apology letter to the community, Superintendent Rick Schmitt said the district discouraged such “inaccurate and hurtful rumors” after the drowning, including in an email it sent to parents shortly after Ben’s death.