Irvington’s athletic trainer in need of more funding

Atira Nair, Staff Writer

Irvington high school is uncertain whether or not they will have to cut funding for athletic trainer Carmen Charleston. Funding for the athletic trainer comes from Washington Hospital rather than the FUSD; therefore, the school is unsure if they will be able to continue providing an athletic trainer for Irvington.

An athletic trainer’s job is to provide medical information and aid to student athletes as well as physical therapy to those who need it. Irvington’s athletic trainer, Carmen Charleston, has been working at the school for 10 years, providing support to Irvington’s athletes after school. Charleston even appeared in the Tri-City Voice on Jan. 15, 2013 for her support and rehabilitation effort towards student Christina Martin.

The road to recovery the first time around was long and painful, although quicker than many had expected,” said the Tri-City Voice. “Martin was playing softball by Memorial Day weekend. She credits her recovery to the work she did with Charleston.”

Charleston was on site when the injury occurred and was able to care for it until Martin had her surgery performed. Charleston’s efforts helped Martin have a full recovery by providing weekly rehabilitation.

“My job is kind of like a cross between a paramedic and a physical therapist,” said Charleston. “I do injury evaluation and treatment, rehabilitation, and I try to teach education on preventing injuries, as well.”

According to Michelle Stone, the athletic director at Irvington, the school is hoping that Charleston continues her work in the future.Without an athletic trainer, coaches will be forced to treat injuries and there may not be an accessible rehabilitation program.

“Every year we’re crossing our fingers that the school district will pay for the program,” said Stone. “We’re one of the only school districts in the bay area that don’t provide athletic trainers.”

According to Charleston, Washington hospital wishes to see the athletic trainer program continue; however, due to its upcoming budget cuts, the hospital might need some financial assistance from the school district.

“We remain committed to our sports medicine program and look forward to finding more ways to work with local school districts to increase access to athletic trainers at high schools,” said Mike Rogers, athletic director at Washington hospital.