Head Injury and Concussion

Information for Parents Regarding Head Injuries and Concussion

What is a Concussion?

In the event of a concussion, the brain sustains damage at a microscopic level in which cells and cell membranes are torn and stretched. The damage to these cells also disrupts the brain at a chemical level, as well as causing restricted blood flow to the damaged areas of the brain, thereby disrupting brain function. A concussion, therefore, is a disruption in how the brain works; it is not a structural injury. Concussions are difficult to diagnose because the damage cannot be seen. Because concussions are difficult to detect, student athletes must obtain medical approval before returning to athletics following a concussion. In some instances, the signs of a concussion do not become obvious until several hours or even days after the injury.

The following is the procedure for any student, who during a practice or competition, sustains a head injury or suspected concussion, or exhibits signs and symptoms of a concussion or loses consciousness, even briefly.
  • Student shall be removed from the practice or competition immediately
  • Student may not return to the practice or competition that day
  • Report of Head Injury Form is completed by the coach, trainer, faculty member or school nurse
  • Student to see medical provider before returning to school or sport/activity
  • Documentation from medical provider submitted to the school nurse
  • Check in with the school nurse prior to going to class on the first day of returning to school
  • Follow up with the athletic trainer after school
If concussion diagnosis:
  • Athletic trainer, school nurse, teachers and guidance counselor notified
  • Check in with guidance counselor
  • When symptom free, provide medical clearance to begin Return to Play to the athletic trainer or school nurse
  • Return to Play Protocol will be completed with the athletic trainer
  • Post Sports-Related Head Injury Medical Clearance Form is completed
  • Return to sport/activity
Please note:
If a student sustains a head injury outside of school, the parent shall complete the Report of Head Injury Form and submit to the school nurse.For more information on concussion, visit www.cdc.gov/Concussion with any questions or concerns.