School transparency: athletic director Jerry Person

Coach Person:

What was the infection among the football players?

“There were some rashes that were noticed by Nelson, but what we suspected was staph bacteria ended up being a dermatitis type of thing. So [the school] gave the students the proper creams, and it was taken care of. And in the meantime, we sanitized all the equipment of all the kids in the varsity locker room. We took care of sanitizing everything that may have been involved.”


What does the staff do to make students feel safe?

“Just what I said, we sanitized everything to make sure we’re not passing [the infection] along. Also, we notified parents and let them know that this happened, and if they saw anything, our training staff checked every kid on every level to make sure it was not at the freshmen level. [The varsity players] dress in a different area, and they don’t ever practice with them, so they didn’t have any problem with it. In JV, one person had it because he practiced with varsity but there was no other JV player who had it. There was an extensive check of everybody to make sure that nobody else has it, and if he does, we recommend they go to the doctor and inform their parents about it.

Just as we did when we had a wrestler who wrestled against someone from Diamond Ranch who had staff, we informed the parents [of the afflicted students] and recommended they take them to the doctor right away to make sure that there’s nothing going on there, and they ended up being okay that way.

At that point in time, you have to just inform and take care of the problem, and that’s what we did, and now [dermatitis] is not around anymore.”


Should the school have sent out a notification?

“Yeah, if [the infection] continues to spread and go further than that even after our efforts of trying to disinfect, then yeah, we’re probably going to have to send something out after. But at that point in time, we dealt with the situation, and nothing else came out of it. If it extends beyond that then, definitely, we have to notify as many people as we need to notify. If it persisted as a problem, and all of a sudden we have kids on campus who aren’t involved in the sport getting the same thing, then we’re going to have to expand our information base for those people.”


How do you think the situation was handled?

“I think everything went really well with this situation, and we handled it right away. [The students] were sent to the doctor and their parents were informed. [The notice] didn’t need to go beyond that because [the infection] wasn’t beyond that. We took care of the situation and sanitized everything. The people who needed to be notified at that time were. I think our administration does a good job of taking care of things as they happen and notifying the appropriate people and taking care of that. We had a plan of action, and I notified the operations manager who was in charge of sanitizing, and everything worked out great.”


What information do you think the school should release if they had to?

“If they did [have to release information], they have to notify things everyday to include everybody. I don’t think everybody needs to be included, in my opinion, because it didn’t affect everybody, only a certain group of people, so we took care of that in that group of people. I think if we tried to notify every kid of everything happening on campus, we’d be causing more problems than normal. We could alert people, but three out of ten [students] may take it a different way and cause a panic when there’s no panic.”

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