28 Defense Comment Summer 2019 from the ordinary standard of conduct.” (City of Santa Barbara, supra, 41 Cal. 4th at 754.) “It has been described as a failure to exercise even that care which a careless person would use.” (Decker v. City of Imperial Beach (1989) 209 Cal.App.3d 349, 358.) To determine whether there is sufficient evidence of gross negligence to allow this matter to proceed to a jury, the court must start with plaintiff’s complaint. The role of the pleadings in a summary judgment motion is to “delimit the scope of the pleadings.” (Orange County Air Pollution Control Dist. v. Superior Court (1972) 27 Cal.App.3d 109, 113.) Plaintiff in this matter pleaded three theories of gross negligence. Those theories were essentially: 1) a failure to implement policies to proactively identify students who sustain impact to their head associated with brain injury and evaluate them; 2) the lack of a qualified licensed medical provider to monitorandidentifypossibleheadinjuries; and 3) keeping plaintiff in the game after alleged repeated direct blows to the head without evaluating him for a brain injury. The court found that the school district submitted undisputed evidence that it complied with the minimum statutory requirements imposed on high school athletics. The coaching staff had all completed training and were certified in CPR and first aid. That training included recognizing the signs of a concussion. The school district had also provided information to plaintiff and his family regarding concussion and head injury associated with sporting activities. The court also found that a plaintiff in opposition to the motion submitted evidence as to what the school district should have done and what it could improve. Plaintiffs submitted declarations of various experts regarding what steps athletic departments must take to ensure safety during football. One such expert was Bennet I. Omalu, M.D. Dr. Omalu is well known as the doctor portrayed by Will Smith in the movie “Concussion.” Dr. Omalu and others submitted declarations regarding the prevalence of concussions and head injuries in football and argued that more needs to be done to protect student athletes. The court held that such arguments do not establish a “want of even scant care.” Further, the court held that none of the inadequacies cited by plaintiff increased the risk of harm associated with playing football. As such, the court ruled there was no evidence of gross negligence and granted summary judgment in favor of the school district. The editors thank Shawn Borin, a law clerk at Matheny Sears Linkert & Jaime, L.P., for his contributions to this summary. Trials & Tribulations – continued from page 27 Defense Comment wants to hear fromyou. Pleasesendletterstothe editorbye-mailtoEllenC.Arabian- Lee at ellen@arabian-leelaw.com, orJillJ.Lifteratjlifter@rallaw.com. Wereservetherighttoeditletters chosen for publication.