Athletics Policies

Concussion Definition:

A concussion is a reaction by the brain to a jolt or force that can be transmitted to the head by an impact or blow occurring anywhere on the body. Essentially a concussion results from the brain moving back and forth or twisting rapidly inside the skull.

 

Facts about concussions accordIng to the center for disease control (cdc): 
•An estimated 4 million people under age 19 sustain a head injury annually. Of these approximately 52,000 die and 275,000 are hospitalized. 
•An estimated 300,000 sports and recreation related concussions occur each year. 
•Students who have had at least one concussion are at increased risk for another concussion.

 

In New York State in 2009, approximately 50,500 children under the age of 19 visited the emergency room for a traumatic brain injury and of those approximately 3,000 were hospitalized.

 

REQUIREMENTS OF SCHOOL DISTRICTS

Education: 
Each school coach, physical education teacher, nurse, and athletic trainer will have to complete an approved course on concussion management on a biennial basis, starting with the 2012-2013 school year. 
•School coaches and physical education teachers must complete the CDC course. (www.cdc.gov/concussion/HeadsUp/Online_Training.html
•School nurses and certified athletic trainers must complete the concussion training course

Information: 
•Provide concussion management information and sign off with any parental permission form. 
•The concussion management and awareness information or the State Education Department's web site must be made available on the school web site, if one exists.

 

Removal from athletics: 
•Require the immediate removal from athletic activities of any pupil that has or is believed to have sustained a mild traumatic brain injury. 
•No pupils will be allowed to resume athletic activity until they have been symptom free for 24 hours and have been evaluated by and received written and signed authorization from a licensed physician. For interscholastic athletics, clearance must come from the school medical director. 
--Such authorization must be kept in the pupil's permanent heath record. 
--Schools shall follow directives issued by the pupil's treating physician.

 

SYMPTOMS 
Symptoms of a concussion are the result of a temporary change in the brain's function. In most cases, the symptoms of a concussion generally resolve over a short period of time; however, in some cases, symptoms will last for weeks or longer. Children and adolescents are more susceptible to concussions and take longer than adults to recover.

It is imperative that any student who is suspected of having a concussion is removed from athletic activity (e.g. recess, PE class, sports) and remains out of such activities until evaluated and cleared to return to activity by a physician.

Symptoms include, but are not limited to: 
•Decreased or absent memory of events prior to or immed- iately after the injury, or difficulty •retaining new information 
•Confusion or appears dazed 
•Headache or head pressure 
•Loss of consciousness 
•Balance difficulties, dizziness, or clumsy movements 
•Double or blurry vision 
•Sensitivity to light and/or sound 
•Nausea, vomiting and/or loss of appetite 
•Irritability, sadness or other changes in personality 
•Feeling sluggish, foggy or light-headed 
•Concentration or focusing problems 
•Drowsiness Fatigue and/or sleep issues – sleeping more or less than usual

Students who develop any of the following signs, or if signs and symptoms worsen, should be seen and evaluated immediately at the nearest hospital emergency room.
•Headaches that worsen 
•Seizures 
•Looks drowsy and/or cannot be awakened 
•Repeated vomiting 
•Slurred speech 
•Unable to recognize people or places 
•Weakness or numbing in arms or legs, facial drooping
•Unsteady gait 
•Change in pupil size in one eye 
•Significant irritability Any loss of consciousness 
•Suspicion for skull fracture: blood draining from ear or clear fluid from the nose

 

STATE EDUCATION DEPARTMENTS GUIDANCE FOR CONCUSSION MANAGEMENT 
Schools are advised to develop a written concussion management policy. A sample policy is available on the NYSPHSAA web site at www.nysphsaa.org. The policy should include: 
•A commitment to reduce the risk of head injuries. 
•A procedure and treatment plan developed by the district medical doctor. 
•A procedure to ensure proper education for school nurses, 
certified athletic trainers, physical education teachers, 
and coaches. 
•A procedure for a coordinated communication plan among 
appropriate staff. 
•A procedure for periodic review of the concussion management program.

 

RETURN TO LEARN and RETURN TO PLAY PROTOCOLS 
Cognitive Rest: Activities students should avoid include, but are not limited to, the following: 
•Computers and video games 
•Television viewing 
•Texting 
•Reading or writing 
•Studying or homework 
•Taking a test or completing significant projects 
•Loud music 
•Bright lights

Students may only be able to attend school for short periods of time. Accommodations may have to be made for missed tests and assignments.

Physical Rest: 
Activities students should avoid include, but are not limited to, the following: 
•Contact and collision 
•High speed, intense exercise and/or sports 
•High risk for re-injury or impacts 
•Any activity that results in an increased heart rate or increased head pressure

 

Return to Play Protocol once symptom free for 24 hours and cleared by School Medical Director: 
Day 1: Low impact, non strenuous, light aerobic activity. 
Day 2: Higher impact, higher exertion, moderate aerobic activity. No resistance training. 
Day 3: Sport specific non-contact activity. Low resistance weight training with a spotter. 
Day 4: Sport specific activity, non-contact drills. Higher resistance weight training with a spotter. 
Day 5: Full contact training drills and intense aerobic activity. 
Day 6: Return to full activities with clearance from School Medical Director

Any return of symptoms during the return to play protocol, the student will return to previous day's activities until symptom free.

 

CONCUSSION MANAGEMENT TEAM: 
Schools may, at their discretion, form a concussion management team to implement and monitor the concussion management policy and program. The team could include, but is not limited to, the following: 
•Students 
•Parents/Guardians 
•School Administrators 
•Medical Director 
•Private Medical Provider 
•School Nurse 
•Director of Physical Education and/or Athletic Director 
•Certified Athletic Trainer 
•Physical Education Teacher and/or Coaches 
•Classroom Teachers

 

OTHER RESOURCES: 
•New York State Education Department 
http://www.p12.nysed.gov/sss/schoolhealth/schoolhealthservices/ 
•New York State Department of Health--http://www.health.ny.gov/prevention/injury_prevention/ concussion/htm 
•New York State Public High School Athletic Association--www.nysphsaa.org/safety/ 
•Center for Disease Control and Prevention--http://cdc.gov/TraumaticBrainInjury 
•National Federation of High Schoolswww.nfhslearn.com – The FREE Concussion Management course does not meet education requirement. 
•Child Health Plus http://www.health.ny.gov/health_care/managed_care/consumer_ guide/about_child_health_plus.htm 
•Local Department of Social Services – New York State Department of Health http://www.health.ny.gov/health_care/medicaid/ldss/htm 
•Brain Injury Association of New York State http://www.bianys.org 
•Nationwide Children's Hospital – Concussions in the Classroom 
http://www.nationwidechildrens.org/concussions-in-the- classroom 
•Upstate University Hospital – Concussions in the Classroom http://www.upstate.edu/pmr/healthcare/programs/concussion/ classroom.php 
•ESPN Video – Life Changed by Concussion http://espn.go.com/video/clip?id=7525526&categoryid=5595394 
•SportsConcussions.org http://www.sportsconcussions.org/ibaseline/Director
•American Association of Neurological Surgeons http://www.aans.org/Patient%20Information/Conditions%20 and%20Treatment/Concussion.aspx 
•Consensus Statement on Concussion in Sport – Zurich http://sportconcussions.com/html/Zurich%20Statement.pdf

At the beginning of each school year, students will be required to sign an Extracurricular Code of Conduct.  This must be done before a student is allowed to participate in an activity. The signed form will be kept on file at school and covers all activities the student is involved in for the duration of the school year.  For example: If a violation occurs in October and the student is not in a sport, but then decides to participate in a spring sport, the consequences will be enforced for the spring sport.

 

Philosophy:                                                                                                                                            

Student participation in extracurricular activities is a privilege. It is not a right. It should be an integral part of a student’s educational experience. All students involved in extracurricular activities during the school year are subject to the provisions listed below.  Extra-curricular activities shall be defined as those activities for which no separate and distinct “academic” credit is given.

 

SCHOOL ATTENDANCE:                                                                                                                     

In order to practice or participate in extracurricular activities, the following procedures will be followed:

 

TARDIES

Students need to be in attendance and on time for 1st period classes.  If a student is illegally tardy to school anytime before or at 8:15 a.m., he/she will be given detention until 3:20 p.m. Detention will be served on the day of tardiness unless it is on a day of a scheduled competition. The student must be in school by 11:15 a.m. in order to practice or participate in his/her sport, club, meeting, performance or event.  The building principal may use his/her discretion for extenuating circumstances. If a student is illegally tardy to school anytime after 8:15 a.m., he/she will be ineligible to participate in practice, games, or events that day.  

 

EARLY DISMISSAL

If a student is dismissed during the school day for an appointment, he/she must present verification from a professional’s office (doctor, dentist, lawyer, etc.) upon their return to the attendance office or the coach/advisor to be allowed to participate in any after-school activity.

The nurse will contact the coach/advisor if a student goes home sick during the day.  The student cannot practice or participate in any activity that day without a doctor’s note

 

MISSING PRACTICE                                                                                                                                             

If a student misses practices/games/events due to outside events, competition, activities, family vacations, etc., playing time may be altered at the coach’s or advisor’s discretion.

 

QUITTING THE TEAM

It is highly desired that student athletes refrain from “quitting” an interscholastic athletic team or club. If a student “quits” a team after the team has already begun to compete in games/meets, etc., that student will be suspended from 20% of the next athletic season in which he/she chooses to participate.  In the event of a hardship (or other reasonable circumstance) forcing an athlete or club member to discontinue participation, it will be left to the discretion of the athletic director/advisor and building principal as to whether or not the student shall face suspension. If a coach asks a student to drop the sport/club, there will be no consequences for that student. Completion of an athletic team shall mean participating in all final practices and events including sectionals.

 

O-A Recognition                                                                                                                                                            

If an athlete drops out of his/her sport during the season, he/she will not receive credit of points towards any O-A recognition.

 

RULES AND REGULATIONS                                                                                                                              A student is considered to be in violation of this Code if he/she:

  • Uses, possesses or exchanges tobacco or tobacco products

  • Uses, possesses, or exchanges alcohol or alcoholic beverages

  • Uses, possess, or exchanges illegal, prescription, designer, synthetic, look-alike drugs including anabolic steroids and e-vapor cigarettes or e-vape products or drug paraphernalia

  • Is in attendance at an underage gathering/party where alcohol, tobacco, or above named drugs are being used/supplied.  In a situation where this arises, students must make a reasonable effort to leave the premise as soon as possible. Each situation will be investigated by administration and they will determine consequences thereafter.

  • Participates in hazing.  Hazing is an act that causes or is likely to cause bodily danger, physical harm, personal degradation or disgrace, resulting in physical or mental harm

  • Is convicted or voluntarily admits to committing a crime

  • Is involved in any behavior that results in a Superintendent’s Hearing

  • Participate in any form of bullying or cyberbullying

"A person is bullied when he or she is exposed, repeatedly and over time, to negative actions on the part of one or more other persons, and he or she has difficulty defending himself or herself."

This definition includes three important components:

  1. Bullying is aggressive behavior that involves unwanted, negative actions.
  2. Bullying involves a pattern of behavior repeated over time.
  3. Bullying involves an imbalance of power or strength.

Reports of suspected violations will be investigated by administration even if an official complaint has not been filed.  This is to attempt to protect our students that may be afraid to report such incidences. The Middle/High School Principal, Athletic Director, Advisor/Coach, or a combination thereof, including an administrator will review each case and any punishment or disciplinary action will be determined by same or combination thereof.

The number a violations a student commits will be accrued from the time a student enters 9th grade or is selectively classified in middle school throughout his/her senior year.

Consequences for violations will begin at the time the student is found guilty of the violation.

CONSEQUENCES for students who have violated the Code:

First Offense:

For students participating in sports/clubs for grades 9 (or is selectively classified in middle school)-12): The student will be suspended from 20% of the number of scheduled games in the sport he/she is participating in or plans to participate in the future.  The student can practice/try-out during this time. For games, the student is required to attend, in street clothes, to be with his/her team/club. If the violation occurs when there is not 20% of the games left in the season, the consequence will continue into the next sport in which the student participates.  The student will then miss the number of games in the next sport to make up the 20%. For example: The student was suspended for 4 games of basketball The student was found guilty of violating the code when there were only 3 games left in the season. Therefore, the student will miss 1 game of the following sport in which he/she participates.  The suspended number of games does not take into account medically excused absences.

Second Offense:

For students participating in sports grades 9 (or is selectively classified in middle school) -12): The student will be suspended for a minimum of 50 % of the number of games in the sport he/she is participating in or plans to participate in the future.  The student can practice/try-out during this time. For games, the student is required to attend, in street clothes, to be with his/her team/club. If the violation occurs when there is not 50% of games left, the consequence will continue into the next sport in which the student participates.  The student will then miss the number of games in the next sport to make up the 50%. For example: The student was suspended for 5 4 games of basketball.  The student was found guilty of violating the code when there were only 3 games left in the season.  Therefore, the student will miss 1 game of the following sport in which he/she participates. The suspended number of games does not take into account medically excused absences.

Third Offense:

For students participating in sports grades 9 (or is selectively classified in middle school)-12):: The student will be suspended from participating on a sports team for 10 school months.  The student can try-out for a sport if his/her suspension ends during its season and practice until his/her suspension is completed.

Record keeping for student violations of the extracurricular violations will be kept by the Athletic Director.

 

ADMINISTRATIVE PROCEDURES: 

Any students suspected of being in violation of the Code will be afforded the following due process procedures:

An initial investigation regarding the alleged violation will be conducted.

If the initial investigation determines that the student has violated the Code, then his/her parents will be notified by phone and in writing of the situation by an administrator, and the procedures that are to be followed in that specific case.

Parents, at their request, will be afforded the opportunity for an informal hearing on the matter with the extra-curricular advisor, coach, Athletic Director, Middle/High School Principal and the student.  This request must be made within 5 instructional days of when the student is found guilty of the violation.

A formal hearing, to involve the Superintendent of Schools, may be requested by the parent if he/she is not satisfied with the findings of the first hearing. This request must be made within 5 instructional days of when the parent received the results of the informal hearing.

Parents may make a final appeal to the Board of Education if they are not satisfied with the Superintendent’s decision. This request must be made within 5 instructional days of when the parent received the results of the formal hearing.

 

Extra-curricular Activities Academic Regulations

Cumulative individual course grades will be reviewed the first Monday in October for all fall sports athletes and club members and every 2 weeks while they are participating in their sport or club.  If a student is failing one or more courses at any 2 week checkpoint, he/she will be on PROBATION and will be required to attend the after-school tutoring 4 days a week until 3:20 p.m.until he/she is passing the coursework.  If a teacher requests the student to stay after school with him/her, the student is required to meet with the teacher instead of attending tutoring. Fulfilling the tutoring requirement is not merely attendance at the tutoring session. The student must also participate in the tutoring with sincere effort. If during this sport season or club membership, the student identified above is failing (2) two or more classes after the (2) two week probationary period he/she will be INELIGIBLE until he/she is only failing 1 class, or until the student’s teacher communicates that he/she is making satisfactory progress.

If a high school student is failing any course(s) and does not attend the after school tutoring or teacher required after school time,administration will determine consequences on an individual basis.

If a middle school student is failing any course(s) and does not attend the after school tutoring or teacher required after school time, the student will not be allowed to practice the following day.  If there is a game that day, this consequence will be served the following day. If a middle school student misses 4 consecutive days of after school tutoring, he/she will be removed from the sport or club.

For winter and spring sports, cumulative individual course grades will be reviewed at the beginning of each sports season on the date of the first practice or as soon as rosters are set by the coach.  The above procedure will be followed for these athletes.

Due to the timing of the end of the year, a review committee consisting of administration, Athletic Director, coach, teacher of the course, and student will be held to determine eligibility for:

  • A student who has not been involved in sports or clubs during the school year, who is interested in playing a spring sport, and has a cumulative failing course grade that would be difficult to reach passing in a two week interval.

 

GRADES at END of SCHOOL YEAR 

If a student failed (2) two or more courses at the end of the school year and is repeating the courses starting in September, he/she will be required to attend after school tutoring 4 days a week until 3:20 p.m. for minimally the first 5 weeks of school in order to be eligible to participate in extracurricular activities.

****If questions arise regarding the enforcement of the Extra-Curricular Eligibility Policy, the parent/student may appeal to the Athletic Director or Club Advisor.  The Athletic Director or Club Advisor, in consultation with the Middle/High School Principal, will make a final determination for the situation.

All medications MUST be brought directly to the school nurse by an adult. Bus policy does not allow medications on the bus. Medication requests must be renewed each school year for long term medication. Any change in medication or dosage requires a new order. This procedure applies to both prescription and non-prescription medicines.