School institutes new CPR community service requirement


Illustration by Alexa Druyanoff

On a dummy, an illustrated student practices CPR technique. With the new requirement, all students beginning with the class of 2024 will be trained in CPR.

Grant Park

The school announced a new requirement for all upper school students to complete 10 hours of CPR/AED and first aid training before graduation in an email sent to students and parents Sept. 14.

Dean of Students, AP Coordinator and ISIR Teacher Jordan Church and Counselor and ISIR Teacher Michelle Bracken provided updated guidelines for the community service requirement, including the new CPR/AED training which will start with the class of 2024.

Bracken expands on importance of CPR training 

Bracken said the idea to institute this requirement has been under consideration for a few years and their decision was based on the premise that all members of our school community should be properly trained to save lives.

“Several people in our community including Milo Sini, the Community Health Officer, had been talking the past several years before COVID about making it a requirement for students to be CPR/AED and first-aid trained because if something were to happen on our campus, it’s likely that student would be the closest person,” Bracken said. “Here at school and obviously out in other situations, [with the proper training], they would be able to save lives.”

Here at school and obviously out in other situations, [with the proper training], [students] would be able to save lives.”

— Michelle Bracken

When asked about how the new 10-hour requirement would be incorporated into the current community service hours, Bracken explained that the CPR/AED training hours will be applied towards the current service hours requirement.

“You can get 10 hours [of CPR training] from sophomore, junior and senior year, and any of those years will be a part of the student’s 12 hours requirement, so it’s not an additional requirement,” Bracken said. “[The CPR requirement] is serving the community in some way.”

Students express thoughts on the new requirement

In an effort to help students to fulfill the requirement, the school will offer CPR training courses four times each school year at the Upper School campus. Students will be also allowed to take courses outside of school. However, if a student decides to take a course outside of the school, it must be the course from the American Red Cross or the American Heart Association. The student must also get approval from the Community Health Office.

Rustom Malhotra ’24 said that instituting the CPR training requirement by the school was a great idea.

“I think it is very practical and a useful skill to know, and I was already planning on training in it outside of school,” said Malhotra.

Although current juniors and seniors are not required to complete the 10 hours of CPR/AED and first aid training, they can also earn 10 hours of community service credit if they decide to complete the course.

Jack Austen ’23 said he believes it is important for the majority of the school population to be CPR trained.

“I think I would consider completing the training anyway because I think it would be helpful for the overall health of the school and the safety of the people,” Austen said. “At least a portion of the people at the school [should] know CPR.”