SAN ANTONIO -- Some parents are having mixed feelings about signing up their children for football after recent reports about head injuries.
The National Institutes of Health released a report about NFL star Junior Seau. According to the report, Seau had symptoms associated with Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy, or CTE, prior to committing suicide last year. His family was told the disease came from repetitive head injuries that deteriorated his brain and his ability to think logically.
"Yes, football has more potential head contact as part of the sport,” said Jerry Comalander, who has been the athletic director for North East Independent School District for more than 20 years.
Comalander did not speak specifically about whether or not Seau suffered from CTE. He merely acknowledged growing concern about concussions, particularly with high school football.
There are 3566 students enrolled in middle or high school football with North East ISD. If someone suffers a concussion, that player is out of the game and under supervision for six days.
Comalander said North East ISD goes beyond UIL requirements when it comes to monitoring the player after an incident. The district has a Concussion Oversight Team. Anytime a player gets hurt, someone must document the student’s recovery for six days to make sure the player is well enough to return to the game.
"Anytime something like that happens, it's always scary for everybody,” Comalander told us.
By law, North East ISD and other school district in the state must keep a log available for parents to see that helmets are inspected. According to Comalander, North East ISD spends more than $200 for each Riddell Speed helmet, which he said is a highly-rated helmet.
However, mo matter what the safety rating, nothing can offer total protection.
"We are doing, in my opinion, the absolute best for our children," Comalander insisted.CLICK HERE
to check out the CDC's "Heads Up Concussion in Football Fact Sheet."