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Policies » Section J: Students » JLCJ: Concussions And Head Injuries

Policy Date: 01/12/2021

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The Auburn School Board recognizes that concussions and head injuries are commonly reported injuries in children and adolescents who participate in sports and other recreational activities. The Board acknowledges the risk of catastrophic injuries or death is significant when a concussion or head injury is not properly evaluated and managed. The Board recognizes that the majority of concussions will occur in “contact” sports. However, in order to ensure the safety of all District student-athletes, this policy will apply to all competitive athletic activities as identified by the Board and administration.

Consistent with the National Federation of High School (NFHS) and the New Hampshire Interscholastic Athletic Association (NHIAA), the District will utilize recommended guidelines, procedures and other pertinent information to inform and educate coaches, student athletes, and parents/guardians of the nature and risk of concussions or head injuries, including the dangers associated with continuing to play after a concussion or head injury.

For purposes of this policy, “student-athlete” means a student involved in any intramural sports program conducted outside the regular teaching day or competitive student sports program between schools in grades 5 through 8.

For purposes of this policy, “student sports” means intramural sports programs conducted outside the regular teaching day for students in grades 5 through 8 or competitive athletic programs between schools for students in grades 5 through 8, including all NHIAA sanctioned activities, including cheer/dance squads, or any other district-sponsored sports or activities as determined by the board or administration.

For purposes of this policy, “head injury” means injuries to the scalp, skull, or brain caused by trauma, and shall include a concussion which is the most common type of sports-related brain injury.

Athletic Director or Administrator in Charge of Athletic Duties
The Athletic Director will keep abreast of changes in standards regarding concussion, explore staff professional development programs relative to concussions, and will explore other areas of education, training and programs.

Each spring, the athletic director or designee shall review any changes that have been made in procedures required for concussion and head injury management or other serious injury by consulting with the NHIAA. If there are any updated procedures, they will be adopted and used for the upcoming school year.
All coaches shall undergo training in head injury and concussion management at least once every two years by one of the following means: (1) through viewing the NHIAA sport-specific rules clinic; or (2) through viewing the NHIAA concussion clinic.

On a yearly basis, a concussion and head injury information sheet shall be distributed to the student-athlete and the athlete’s parent/guardian prior to the student-athlete’s initial practice or competition. This information sheet may be incorporated into the parent permission sheet that allows students to participate in extracurricular athletics.

Removal From Play and Protocol For Return To Play
Any coach, official, or licensed athletic trainer, who suspects that a student-athlete has sustained a concussion or head injury in a practice or game shall immediately remove the student-athlete from play. A student-athlete who has been removed from play shall not return to play on the same day or until he/she is evaluated by a health care provider and receives written authorization from that health care provider to return to play in any capacity. The student-athlete shall also present written permission from a parent/guardian to return to play.

Concussion Awareness and Education
To the extent possible, the District will implement concussion awareness and education into physical education and/or health education curriculum.

Academic Issues in Concussed Students
In the event the District is notified that a student is concussed, the school’s concussion protocol will be followed.

Section 504 accommodations may be developed in accordance with applicable law and board policies.

Legal References:
RSA 200:49, RSA 200:50, RSA 205:51, RSA 200:52 Adopted: December 13, 2012

Revised: June 14, 2016
Revised: January 12, 2021