March 22, 2013
Albemarle County Schools are making sure coaches, parents and teachers are more aware of the risks and how to best deal with concussions.
Kristen Miller's son Taylor has been playing football for 5 years and has big dreams.
"He has dreams of going pro and playing in the NFL," Miller, an Albemarle County resident said.
But watching her son play, knowing a concussion could happen at any moment, she says, is pretty stressful.
"I mean that's your little baby out there. It's scary sometimes, he comes home all bruised up and he loves showing me, mom look at this bruise," she said.
Albemarle County Public Schools are updating their concussion management plan which requires special training for coaches, post-injury training for teachers and a 'When in doubt, sit them out' policy.
"When in doubt, they don't play and that's a big part of it. These kids aren't being payed to play they're doing it for fun," Ricky Rice, a coach for the Thomas Jefferson Football League.
He's been in and around the game of football for 40 years now and says he's seen major improvements. Most recently, with the updates in helmets and the amount of padding for concussion prevention.
"When it gets to high school it's gonna get tougher. Every stage is a little rougher," Rice said.
He said he's glad his grandson Taylor is going to have aware and prepared coaches early on.
And while Kristen says she'll never be able to stop her son from playing, at least the updated plan puts her a little more at ease to know the schools are upping their game in terms of concussion.