The Bexley City School District board members voted unanimously to allow Nationwide Children’s Hospital Department of Sports Medicine to provide athletic training services to the high school athletic department for the 2009-2010 school year.
"We believe that the services will be delivered in a professional manner," Superintendent Michael Johnson said of the $18,500 one-year agreement.
Nationwide will provide a licensed athletic trainer to students in both athletics and activities provided by the school. The new trainer will provide 1,200 hours throughout the school year with the schedule being coordinated with Athletic Director Molly Feesler.
Nationwide will also provide an additional athletic training visit per week to the middle school beyond the 1,200 hours services provided during the school year.
School Board Member Diane Peterson asked during the Aug. 24 board meeting about choices families of Bexley students have when an injury occurs and referrals are required. Lisa Kluchurosky, program manager of sports medicine with Nationwide, said the students and their parents can either select a physician at Nationwide or their own personal physician if a referral is recommended by the trainer.
"We just make ourselves available," Kluchurosky said.
Board Vice President Joan Fishel requested information be distributed to the parents prior to any kinds of injury so that families are fully informed. Other board members agreed that further information needed to be provided for parents.
Additional athletic opportunities for students were also discussed at the meeting. The board heard a proposal developed by Johnson and Board Member Craig Halliday that would provide some support to activities such as girls lacrosse that currently does not use all school resources.
In this first reading, the board was asked to weigh in on the proposal and to hear public comments to take into consideration.
"I appreciate the efforts of the board," said Drew Bergman, president of Bexley Girls Lacrosse.
Two concerns addressed included transportation and a lack of administrative support through scheduling with the athletic director. The cost of transportation was a need for the boys as well.
Andy Gogan, chairman of Bexley Boys High School Lacrosse Club, said that while the boys are four years ahead of the girls’ program at this time, they still have concerns and needs they wish to be considered by the board. He said where the league requirements consider them a school sponsored team, "We’re running a little short."
Gogan requested specifically for the board’s consideration regarding field usage fees being charged to them, having a protected field schedule, varsity letters, usage of school transportation and a request to have $2,500 paid to the program to offset referee fees.
"The truth of the matter is, there is a Bexley High School lacrosse team already," Gogan said. "We ask support toward league requirements."
Board Member Steven Grossman said he was looking forward to comments from the community and the hopes to get this process completed prior to December when the board replaces three of its six board members.
School Board President Andy Sutter also said the district is struggling in efforts to help the girls’ lacrosse team, which he said was "seconds to being state champs."
"We are trying to position them in a way that they can maintain the club and schedule matches … without taking on full blow costs of a varsity sport," Sutter said.