Aug 18, 2017Fee Pays for ATs
Athletes in the Levy County (Fla.) school district will have athletic trainers from the University of Florida this school year, thanks to the revenue added by a new participation fee. According to the Chiefland Citizen, the athletics fee invoice says that the athletic trainers will serve as a “go-between” between students and UF Orthopedics, help diagnose injured student-athletes, and assist with rehabilitation.
“By having a professional that can do that and be a go-between with the UF Department of Orthopaedics and Rehabilitation, they’re going to save parents a lot of time by being able to diagnose issues and coordinate with the UF Orthopedics, versus mom going at midnight to the immediate care center trying to get an X-ray,” said Matt McLelland, Director of Administration for Levy County’s school board.
McLelland said that in order to fund the athletic trainers, which cost $80,000 per year, the school would charge $50 to each student who participates in sports, a fee that students who play multiple sports would only have to pay once. Further, he explained they would also consider allocating $1 from every $6 sports ticket sold to pay for the athletic trainers. McLelland said that while the revenue from ticket sales would vary based on how many home games Levy County hosted, the athletic trainers would be a worthwhile investment.
“I understand, being (the former principal at CMHS) how it is, managing the money,” he said. “But if a [athletic] trainer can prevent one child who gets a concussion from dying, to me it’s worth it.”
McLelland said that a fee of $50 would be cheaper than other counties, which often charge several hundred dollars.
“When you look at our surrounding counties, this is a big savings,” McLelland said. “And we feel the amount of safety that’s going to be administered by the [athletic] trainer, whether it’s concussions, heat exhaustion, those sorts of things, it’s hard to put a price on that.”