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About The daily Nebraskan. ([Lincoln, Neb.) 1901-current | View Entire Issue (Feb. 11, 2000)
.By Michelle Starr .
^ Staff writer ^
= The Nebraska Supreme Court
heard a case on Thursday against the
•.University of Nebraska Board of
< Regents in a public session at the NU
-College of Law?’ r ••
t Charges were brought against the
^university when John Sharkey, a
^University of Nebraska at Omaha
student, was attacked on campus and
suffered lacerations on his wrists,
"arms and hands by another UNO stu
dent on Oct: 6, 1993.
Sharkey claimed the university
should pay damages for his injuries
i because the university should have
\ foreseen problems with the student,
Danny Clark, and therefore protected
The incident occurred when
Sharkey and his wife, Regina, al§o a
UNO student, were waiting outside
the campus recreation building to
-complain to university officials that
.'Clark had physically harassed
Regina Sharkey two days earlier, said
James Lee, a University of Nebraska
i second-year law student, in a sum
mary of the case.
x xie nummary was wnuen ior stu
dents attending the state high-court’s
visit to McCollum Hall auditorium,
said John Wiltse, NU senior associ
ate general counsel.
i The Nebraska Supreme Court
‘visits Nebraska campuses each year
i for educational purposes.
John Sharkey charged the univer
.s&ityiwith negligence for failing to
‘protect him against criminal activity,
rthe summary said. t
John Sharkey alleged that on Oct.
4, 1993, Clark hugged Regima
Sharkey from behind, constituting
Two days later, as the Sharkeys
were waiting to speak to someone
,about the incident, Clark and John
• Sharkey argued, he said. Clark then
.allegedly left and returned with a
vknife, which he used to cut John
Sharkey, the summary said;
i First, the Sharkeys filed a com
\ plaint with the State Claims Board on
;Feb. 15, 1994, which was denied
about four months later. A second
claim was filed in January 1995, and
f it was also denied.
More than six months after the
first claim was filed, but less than six
.months after the second claim was
i filed, the Sharkeys filed a complaint
-in the Douglas County District
Court. . ,
, i ne court ruiea in iavor or tne
university. It said the Sharkeys’
‘.action was barred by a statute of lim
itations - it was filed more than six
i months after the denial by the State
It also said Clark’s alleged
actions were not foreseeable by the
Sharkey and his lawyers, Marlin
Polk and Tom Waldman, decided to
appeal to the state Supreme Court.
Neither attorney was available for
The Sharkeys stated the statute of
limitations was not violated because
the case was filed in district court
within six months of the second
They also argued the attack was
foreseeable because of documenta
tion and testimony by campus securi
ty stating others had filed harassment
complaints against Clark.
Arguments for the case were
closed Thursday, and both sides are
awaiting a decision.
—LEGISLATURE - * X:
Child-care licensing could change
■ Parents would be noti
fied of providers’ levels of
By Veronica Daehn
Staff writer T . v
Members of the Health and
Human Services Committee dis
cussed a bill Thursday that would cre
ate a tiered system of requirements
for child-care providers.
Sen. Pam Brown of Omaha said
the main purpose of LB7 J5 is to edu
cate parents about the training child
care providers have had.
The bill would establish three
tiers of certification, and child-care
providers could apply for certifica
tion in one of those tiers.
Mary Imig, a member of the
Governor’s Business Council, said
there are two licenses that a child
care service can now receive.
-A provider can either be a
“licensed-care operation” or fall
under “nationally accredited care,”
The problem is most parents
don’t even know the licenses exist,
“I’ve heard increased frustration
from parents,” Imig said. “In a multi
ple level system (like this would be),
parents are empowered to make deci
The bill would mandate child
care providers to post a certificate on
site indicating what level of certifica
tion they have.
The difference between the three
levels of certification is the required
number of training hours.
Certification requirements would
mandate child-care providers be cer
tified in CPR and first aid.
They would also need to undergo
training how to recognize child abuse
and how to control infectious disease.
The bill states training would also
need to be completed in areas such as
child development, nutrition, com
munication skills, multicultural com
petence and discipline.
Brown said it would not be
mandatory for all child-care agencies
to apply for certification.
But providers must let parents
know what routes they took.
“This bill is about letting the con
sumers and parents know at what
level the (provider) is licensed,”
Brown said. “They would be required
to post a certificate that says they
opted out of the training program.”
Claire Burton, president of the
Omaha Association for the Education
of Young Children, said child-care
programs have been constantly
“Child-care professionals must
become increasingly skilled,” Burton
said. “The levels (of certification)
provide more clearly defined goals
for providers to work for.”
Janine Huntoon, public policy
chairwoman for the Nebraska
Association for the Education of
Young Children, agreed that the certi
fication levels will push child-care
providers to a higher level.
“We want to.ensure that high
quality programs are based on high
knowledge,” Huntoon said. “There is
a need for a trained workforce that
gets recognized for their efforts to be
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