The Claiborne school board has agreed to consolidate its various committee meetings into a regularly-scheduled one. Vice-chairman Shannon England suggested the idea during a discussion in which a specific time would have been set for the property committee meeting.
The full school board will meet ‘in committee’ on the fourth Thursday of each month, beginning at 6 p.m., inside the Central Office conference room. The next one will be held on April 27.
The public is invited to attend these monthly committee meetings.
Pinnacle Performance was added to the agenda during the opening moments of the board meeting last week. Pinnacle athletic trainers Sarah Bean and Mara Brock spent a bit of time discussing their roles.
Bean spoke of the seriousness of repeat concussions.
“A concussion is more than a bump to the head. It is a traumatic brain injury which should always be taken seriously. In the event a student athlete is suspected of having a systemic concussion, Tennessee state law requires that the athlete be removed from play until it has been determined that the athlete does not have a concussion,” said Bean.
Removing the player prevents Second-Impact Syndrome, a very serious condition that could cause catastrophic consequences, she said.
Bean pointed to a recent incident, highlighted in an article concerning a North Carolina athlete who was returned to play before the concussive symptoms had subsided.
“Unfortunately, for the athlete and his parents, the athlete passed away that night,” said Bean.
Research suggests that injuries occur more often during practice sessions than during actual games, she said.
Bean praised the Claiborne school system for its willingness to allow student Lincoln Memorial University trainers to receive hands-on clinical experience during school games. The practice has improved the quality of the college’s sports medicine training, she said.
“If our county did not have certified athlete trainers, the Committee on Accreditation for Athletic Training Education would not allow the athletic training students to join Claiborne County schools and gain that valuable clinical experience,” said Bean.
The problem, she said, is delegating enough time to each of the various ball teams to become acquainted with the individual players and their particular health issues. The Pinnacle trainers have just 25 training hours allotted to them, she said.
Brock spoke of ongoing efforts to acquire donated supplies so that the county and the athlete parents do not have to pay for athletic tape, boots and other injury related items.
According to Brock, the owner of Pinnacle Performance recently donated over $500 in supplies to assist in the school program.
The company is now utilizing an online electronic medical records system, free of charge, that allows the trainers, parents, coaches and athletes to track their records.
A mini-grant from the American Heart Association is allowing both women to hold classes in emergency training. Once the classes are over, Brock said the school system will be able to keep those supplies, which include CPR ‘dolls’ and training videos.
Bean and Brock have created policy and procedure manuals, now installed at both high schools. The manuals will prevent any confusion in protocol in the event of an injury while on campus.
“So far, I have evaluated at the Gap, over 70 different injuries. Four of them were concussions, I referred to the ER,” said Brock.
Others, she said, were directed to physical therapy or to various orthopedic clinics.
Both women are graduates of the Claiborne school system and attained their degrees via LMU.
In other action, the board unanimously approved a motion to allow all grade levels to view a video on blood-borne pathogens.
The school system will be asking permission to re-appropriate $14,000 in grant funds that, if approved, will be used to purchase a mower. Claiborne High School has some 50 acres of grounds to keep clipped and just one mower to do so, according to CHS principal T. J. Sewell.
Clairfield Elementary School won the attendance award for the third time in as many months, pulling down a 94.8 percent attendance rate.
The Alpha School came in second, with a 93.5 average percentile.
Reach Jan Runions at 423-254-5588 or on Twitter @scribeCP.