The Cherokee County School District’s high schools have earned a national award for athletic safety.
Cherokee, Creekview, Etowah, River Ridge, Sequoyah and Woodstock High Schools have received the National Athletic Trainers’ Association (NATA) Safe Sports School award, which recognizes secondary schools that meet recommended National standards to improve safety in student athletics. The award “reinforces the importance of providing the best level of care, injury prevention, and treatment.”
“Our athletic programs offer students a valuable opportunity to excel in their sport and learn skills like team building, time management and leadership. Whether they win or lose in the game, what’s most important to us is their safety, which makes this honor very meaningful to me and our School Board,” Superintendent of Schools Dr. Brian V. Hightower said. “Thank you to our Northside Hospital Cherokee athletic trainers, our coaches and everyone who supports our student athletes for making this recognition possible, and thank you to Tonya Sebring, our supervisor of athletics and activities, for coordinating these efforts.”
In order to achieve this recognition, schools must: create a positive athletic health care administrative system; provide or coordinate pre-participation physical examinations; promote safe and appropriate practice and competition facilities; plan for selection, fit function and proper maintenance of athletic equipment; provide a permanent, appropriately equipped area to evaluate and treat injured athletes; develop injury and illness prevention strategies, including protocols for environmental conditions; provide or facilitate injury intervention; create and rehearse a venue-specific emergency action plan; provide or facilitate psychosocial consultation and nutritional counseling/education; be sure athletes and parents are educated about the potential benefits and risks in sports as well as their responsibilities. Honored schools receiving a banner to display in recognition of their achievement.
“The health and safety of student-athletes is critical as it has both immediate and long-term effects,” NATA President Tory Lindley said. “NATA created the ‘Safe Sports School Award’ to recognize and champion schools nationwide that are committed to enhancing safety in sports. We are proud to see the list of award recipients grow exponentially each year as schools see the immense value in holding themselves to best practices and policies that ensure a high standard of athlete care.”
CCSD partners with Northside Hospital Cherokee to provide every high school with highly qualified athletic trainers and to improve athletic safety through initiatives like the ImPACT concussion prevention, screening and management program.
“This award represents the commitment that Northside and Cherokee County School District have to keeping athletes and their families safe and healthy,” Mr. Hayes said. “We look forward to our continued partnership where Northside Hospital provides excellence in health care to our community.”