College Place School District is planning to begin its fall sports season this year with an athletic trainer from Providence St. Mary Medical Center in Walla Walla.
The district’s athletic director, Kenneth James, said at a school board meeting Tuesday, April 25, that the hospital is in the process of creating a contract.
“They have a large range of athletic trainers and training programs and internship opportunities,” James said. “So, we’re working through how we morph that model into something that fits for us.”
Superintendent Jim Fry said that while he did not yet know what the cost would be, the school district has set aside $50,000 for the upcoming agreement.
“This has been a board priority,” Fry said. “A lot of it is access to service — access to the kind of care they need to preemptively take care of our athletes in training.”
He said that without an athletic trainer, student athletes sometimes fall through the cracks when it comes to physical health.
“The health and welfare of the kids is a high priority and that’s why we’re working on this,” Fry said.
James said the hospital would provide two to three office hours per week, which would likely take place during practices.
“It might be things like checking in on an athlete’s progress or return to play,” James said. “Maybe they got hurt earlier in the week and now we have some face time.”
He said that for Friday night varsity football games, a medical professional or certified trainer would be present to provide care for both teams.
“A lot of the places we go, they provide that. They have a team doctor or a certified trainer that could serve either team in those scenarios,” James said. “It’ll be nice to be able to do the same when we have guests and can serve our own athletes that way.”
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