In order to address the number of concussions seen in student-athletes, Rutherford County (Tenn.) Schools are considering hiring "safety coaches." These individuals would make sure student-athletes are using equipment properly along with monitoring athletic practices.
According to an article from the Daily News Journal, the safety coaches would also ensure that student-athletes’ physical forms were turned in on time and arrange in-services for the coaches. In the last several years, there have been 33 concussions reported to the county, four of which came from football and 29 from girls’ soccer. Taking baseline data is one step the district may take as it implements safety changes.
“I found we have a lot more concussions than we think we do,” Terry Hodge, a board of education member, told the Daily News Journal.
If positions for safety coaches are created, they would likely be filled by three to five individuals. Ideally, they would be current teachers who coach or would like to move into something other than coaching.
“In my mind, it’s more important for middle school because they may be less experienced athletes,” Tim Tackett, the Rutherford County schools’ athletic director, told the Daily News Journal.