“When in doubt, sit them out.”
That phrase will be a common one for coaches this year as the district focuses more attention on concussions in an effort to keep student athletes safe.
Athletic Director Donna VanZandt explained that New York State mandated new rules on concussions starting with the 2012-13 school year. All coaches, for example, are now required every two years to participate in training so they can better recognize the symptoms of concussions. Parents of student athletes also must be provided information about concussions.
Any student athlete who is believed to have sustained a concussion must be immediately removed from all athletic activities. They cannot participate in athletic activity until they have been symptom free for 24 hours and have been evaluated by a licensed physician.
“We’ve always been cautious about this but there has been a renewed focus given all the recent medical information about concussions,” said Mrs. VanZandt. “Just jarring the head can cause a concussion so we need to be extremely careful in protecting our students.”
According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, an estimated 2.6 million people under age 19 sustain a head injury every year.