Learning to Save Lives

Freshmen Students Learn CPR in Health Class


Photo by: Illustration from Anatomy & Phsyiology, Connexions Web Site

Proper CPR form

As of 2016, Virginia law requires all students and teachers to complete CPR training. No CCPS student can graduate high school without participating in a CPR course. On March 20, 2017, Mrs. Renee Fiege, Mr. David Brohl, Mr. Kevin Thomas, and Mr. Matt Hutchings began teaching the freshman class how to perform/use the following: Adult CPR, Child/Infant CPR, AEDs, and Abdominal Thrusts (formerly known as the Heimlich Maneuver). Testing began on March 28, 2017, and will continue throughout the week. The test includes a written portion, along with a surprise scenario, provided by the teacher, in which the student must perform all the correct steps, precautionary measures,  and correctly administer 30 repetitions of CPR in 17 – 19 seconds (18 seconds is the perfect time, according to American Heart Association).

Mrs. Renee Fiege particularly enjoys teaching this subject because, according to her, “Teaching my students CPR is like empowering them to save someone’s life. After we finish this unit, my fellow CPR teachers and I release hundreds of kids out into the world who have the capability to prevent a death from occurring. It’s really amazing when you think about it like that. In fact, two days ago, one of my students shared the information we’ve been learning in class with her mother, and she even showed her how to successfully perform compressions to the beat of “Stayin’ Alive” by the Bee Gees. The very next morning, this student’s father had a severe heart attack. 90% of people who have a surprise heart attack don’t survive, but because of what this student shared with her mother, the mom was able to perform proper compressions and save her husband’s life.”

After attaining a perfect 100 on her CPR test, Kendall Lewis exclaims, “The test was pretty stressful because I was afraid of accidentally going out of order on my steps or doing my compressions too fast, but I’m really glad I got to learn about this subject because now, if I’m ever in a situation where I could help someone, I have the ability to do so. It’s an extremely empowering feeling.”

The class of 2020 has definitely proven the importance of teaching high school students CPR, and they will continue to make a positive impact with their new knowledge.