KENNEWICK (AP) — The Kennewick School Board has approved allowing student athletes to provide their own football helmets.
The Tri-City Herald reports the district joins others across the country in allowing parents to supply football helmets amid concerns about the risks of concussions.
Some families said they want to buy their own helmets not only for safety reasons, but also for comfort or other helmet features.
Board member Ron Mabry criticized the move, saying it creates an unequal playing field.
Kennewick school district officials say its football equipment sufficiently protects students. Superintendent Dave Bond says the recommendation to allow parents to provide helmets was largely driven by recent guidance from the district’s insurer.
The Pasco and Richland school districts do not allow players to provide their own helmets.