Teacher Claims Baldness was a "Hairy" Experience in Classroom

April 17, 2008 (PLANSPONSOR.com) - A retired British schoolteacher's claim that his baldness is a disability has been rejected.

BBC News reports that an employment tribunal judge in his ruling said if baldness was regarded as an impairment, then so too would features such a big nose, big ears, or shortness have to be considered impairments under the Disability Discrimination Act.

James Campbell, formerly an art teacher at Denny High School in Stirlingshire, took Falkirk Council to an employment tribunal claiming discrimination as well as unfair and constructive dismissal, saying he had suffered from harassment at the hands of pupils because of his baldness, according to the news report.

Campbell claimed his baldness had a “substantial and long term adverse effect” on his ability to do his job, and prevented him from having confidence to do his job. He said he avoided corridors at school and left school later than students to avoid having them call him “baldy.”

Campbell also claimed that the students’ willingness to call him names to his face meant they might also assault him.

The judge said that just because Campbell’s baldness was used to taunt him, did not mean it was a disability.

The constructive and unfair dismissal claim will proceed at a later date, the news report said.