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with support from The California Endowment 


August 29, 2015
Issue 37

School Sports and Physical Education
Credit: Jane Meredith Adams/ EdSource Today

Don't give team players a hard time about being injured -- that's the message to school athletic coaches from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in their latest report, "Concussion at Play: Opportunities to Reshape the Culture Around Concussion."

The advice comes as thousands of high school athletes are ramping up for fall competitions. Awareness of the risks of concussions, particularly for young athletes with developing brains, continues to increase.

Young players are keenly aware of how their coaches feel about injuries, the report said, citing research. Players who are "insulted by their coaches for reporting an injury" or receive "negative messages" from their coaches may feel pressured to keep playing despite symptoms of concussion, the report said.

On the other hand, student athletes who are praised by their coaches for reporting symptoms of  concussion are more likely to do so, the report said.

The trade-off between winning a game in the short term or insuring physical and mental health in the long term continues to be tricky to navigate for players and coaches. In a study of nearly 800 high school athletes, 69 percent said they had played with possible concussion symptoms, the report said. Of those, 40 percent said their coach was not aware they had a possible concussion.

High-profile games, meets and matches pose a challenge to coaches in making health decisions about their players, the report said. When researchers asked 314 coaches if they would remove a young player with concussion symptoms from a game, 92 percent said they would. But when researchers said it was a championship game, nearly 20 percent of coaches said they would allow a concussed athlete to keep playing.

The symptoms of concussion include:
  • Headache, blurry vision, dizziness, vomiting or sensitivity to light or noise.
  • Difficulty concentrating, sleep disturbances
  • Irritability, sadness or nervousness
In the latest salvo in a longstanding effort to enforce a California education law that requires physical education classes for all students, six health advocacy organizations filed a federal complaint charging that California public schools discriminate against Latino and African-American students by disproportionately denying them access to the classes, in violation of federal civil rights law.

Read more at EdSource Today.

Special Education
He is among the nation's leading believers in "aversive therapy," in which students with behavior disorders are pinched, deprived of food and shocked with electricity to control their behavior. For more than 30 years, state attorneys general, U.S. congressmen and the U.N. Special Rapporteur on torture have alleged his methods violate the health, safety and educational rights of children with disabilities.

Now Matthew Israel has been tripped up by investigators at the California Department of Education for a seeming technicality: failing to submit school-employment paperwork.

Read more at EdSource Today.

School Discipline
New snapshots of school district discipline, achievement and drop-out rates
If you've got some time on your hands and a yearning for school district data, check out a new tool announced by the California Department of Education that tracks how well districts and schools have done from 2012 to 2014 in three state priority areas: student achievement, student engagement and school climate.

Read more at EdSource Today.

Getting to the 'why' of discipline disparities

What happened at a rural high school was, according to a new guide to school discipline, the starting point for change. Faced with chronically tardy students and a steady stream of office referrals, including a disproportionate number of American Indian students, school administrators asked: Why? Why the lateness? Why the office referrals?

Read more at EdSource Today.

Conference Call and Webinar

Debriefing on summer meals and learning about 'green' cleaning

Hosted by the Food Research & Action Center, this conference call is a conversation among school food service leaders and advocates about the results of their 2015 summer nutrition programs and ways to participation in 2016.

"Debriefing Summer Meals and Setting the Scene for Next Year"

Who: Conference call hosted by the Food Research & Action Center.

When: Thurs., Sept. 3, 10 to 11 a.m. PT

Register here.

A webinar hosted by Green Clean Schools is designed to help school districts learn about new disinfectant cleaning products that are effective, less expensive than traditional cleaning products and 'green' -- lower in toxins and safer for health.

"Infection Control in a Green Cleaning Program"

Who: Webinar hosted by Green Clean Schools

When: Tues. Sept. 8, 11 a.m. to 12 noon PT

Register here.
Recent Editions of the EdHealth Newsletter

EdHealth Newsletter Issue 36: Rethinking Discipline: New tools for educators
EdHealth Newsletter Issue 35: Oakland schools receive $8 M for discipline reform, trauma care
EdHealth Newsletter Issue 34: After Charleston killings, teachers prep for classroom discussions
EdHealth Newsletter Issue 33: Facebook photos tied to binge drinking?
EdHealth Newsletter Issue 32: Judge rules medically accurate sex ed is 'an important right'

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