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Law mandates coaches get certification in concussion awareness

SPRINGFIELD- A measure that develops a concussion awareness certification program for all Illinois high school coaching staffs was signed into law on Tuesday.

“Today, we know more about the negative impact concussions have on student athletes than ever before,” State Senator Dan Kotowski, D-Park Ridge, said. “We have to ensure that coaches are informed about the consequences of traumatic head injuries and take steps to reduce their frequency and keep our kids safe.”

The law, sponsored in the Senate by Kotowski, requires the Illinois High School Association  to develop a concussion certification program for all high school coaching staffs. The program would be free to IHSA members and offered to non-members for a fee.

Coaches will be required to be certified under the concussion program every two years. In addition, coaches are to show a video portion of the program to students each year.

The youth sports organizations like Little League and youth soccer would be encouraged to undergo the training and receive certification as well.

This measure is a culmination of efforts by the House sponsor, Rep. Carol Sente, D-Lincolnshire, to protect high school students from traumatic head injuries.

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