Return-to-Learn laws too vague to help kids with concussion

Return-to-Play laws have become standard in youth sports nationwide, but a less popular measure to help injured kids is the Return-to-Learn law.


Only eight states have passed such laws, which require schools to offer additional support to kids who have suffered a concussion as they return to the classroom. But a new study indicates that the laws are too vague to really be helpful to the children.


By and large, the Return-to-Learn laws offer no specifics on what help children with lingering concussion symptoms should receive. Most schools don’t have a policy for a concussed student’s return, and the laws offer no provisions that would standardize the care. Since symptoms can vary widely in both severity and type, the schools are left to muddle through each child’s care on their own.


The sentiment behind the laws is commendable, of course. We should be equally eager to help students return to school in a healthy way as we are to return them to athletics, if not more so. But the current laws, few as they are, are doing little to assist in the process; it’s time to give schools clear guidance in helping their concussed students.


*Scientists have no conclusive evidence as to whether or how the reduction of g-forces during impacts reduces the number or degree of concussions and head injuries. GelDefender products provide supplemental padding as well as cooling and comfort benefits when used with helmets and caps. Participants in activities in which head impacts can occur should always use tested and approved helmets for protection. However, no helmet or supplemental padding can protect the user from all serious head or neck injuries that can result from impacts.