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Fresh call for advice to schools on sport safety

By Rebecca Black

The chairman of Stormont's education committee has called for urgent round table discussions to formulate new advice to schools over the dangers of concussion.

Mervyn Storey's call came yesterday after Education Minister John O'Dowd revealed he is considering issuing safety advice to schools following the tragic death of a teenage rugby player.

The Belfast Telegraph can reveal that Mr O'Dowd is to meet the father of Ben Robinson, who died suddenly during a school rugby match in 2011.

An inquest earlier this month found that the 14-year-old Carrickfergus Grammar schoolboy had died from second impact syndrome.

Ben's father Peter made a passionate appeal at the inquest for modern guidelines on concussion management to be issued to all players, coaches and teachers to prevent any repeat of the tragedy.

He told the inquest: "Why does it take my son to die for this to come up?

Mr Robinson has called for the 'Ben's Law', which would force teachers and coaches to be trained in treating concussion.

The Belfast Telegraph can reveal that Mr O'Dowd has received a copy of the coroner's report into Ben's death.

He said in response to an Assembly question asked by Mr Storey that he intended to "seek professional advice".

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