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Bulgaria / Supreme Administrative Court / 10383/2015

The Commission for the Protection against Discrimination (CPD) v the director of an elementary school in the town of R

Deciding Body type:
National Court/Tribunal
Deciding Body:
Supreme Administrative Court
Decision date:

Key facts of the case:

Ms E.P.D. appeals a decision by the Sofia City Administrative Court (SCAC) (Административен съд София – град, АССГ) rejecting her appeal against a decision of the Commission for the Protection against Discrimination (CPD) (Комисия за защита от дискриминация, КЗД) A mother of a pupil filed a complaint before the CPD against the director of the pupil’s elementary school and her teacher for discrimination on the grounds of personal situation and disability, as the pupil was refused to go on a school excursion – an alleged violation of Art. 4, para. 2 of the Protection against Discrimination Act (Закон за защита от дискриминация). The CPD found no discriminatory attitude on the part of the director, but the teacher was found to have directly discriminated against the pupil, refusing to allow her on the excursion due to her disability. The teacher was fined. The Sofia City Administrative Court rejected the teacher’s appeal and confirmed the Commission’s decision.

Outcome of the case:

SAC confirms the lower court’s decision and thus the Commission’s decision rejecting the teacher’s appeal. The SAC reasons that the protection of people with disabilities is regulated in the CRPD and on EU level, including in the Charter. When enrolling the child, the school had been notified of her condition, the child had previously taken part in school excursions and had even paid for the one in question. However, the teacher had reimbursed the parents’ money and refused to take the child as her condition would cause the teacher worries. Thus, the teacher indeed treated the pupil differently under a protected ground, disability, in comparison with her classmates – she refused to include the pupil in the excursion due to her prejudice and fear of the pupil’s disability.