HERMITAGE — The Tennessee Secondary School Athletic Association is implementing a new concussion policy that all member schools must follow beginning with the 2010-11 school year. The TSSAA Board of Control passed the policy unanimously during a conference call on Wednesday, July 21, 2010.
It is very important that every administrator, coach, parent, official, athlete, and health-care provider know the symptoms and steps to take when dealing with student-athletes that display signs of a possible concussion. Concussions can be a serious health issue and should be treated as such.
"We are very pleased that our Board of Control has taken this proactive approach and given our schools clear direction as to how we address this issue," stated Bernard Childress, Executive Director. "It is our feeling that the concussion policy keeps athletics at our level in the proper perspective – safety of student-athletes first and foremost."
TSSAA is asking the administration of every TSSAA/TMSAA member school to meet with their coaching staff immediately and implement this policy prior to the beginning of the 2010-11 sports season.
The state office will distribute this information to as many officials, athletic trainers, and health-care providers as possible. We ask that school personnel do the same in their area. This information should also be given to all parents and student-athletes.
Detailed information, including the language drafted by the NFHS (National Federation of State High School Associations) that will be included in every sport rule book publication, can be found on the TSSAA website (www.tssaa.org) by clicking on the "Concussion Rule" link.
The NFHS has also developed a free 20-minute course online entitled "Concussion In Sport – What you Need to Know" that we encourage every individual to take. It can be accessed at www.nfhslearn.com.