Students get hands-on CPR training

Published 12:01 am Thursday, January 17, 2008

MONTEREY — What would you do if you entered a house and found someone on the floor, unconscious but breathing? For a group of Monterey High School students, the answer is simple: follow your training.

Since the beginning of school, Monterey High School has offered a first r class, which has trained and thus far certified the students in CPR procedures.

If everything goes according to plan, the school will offer an EMT class next year — making the first responders class a pre-requisite — in which students will receive training and certification that will allow them to take the basic EMT training and become an EMT when they turn 18, teacher Jeffery Odom said.

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“In Louisiana, they’re really pushing health education,” Odom said. “A lot of larger schools have health academies, and Concordia Parish is trying to get on that bandwagon.”

The students in the class, ranging from sophomores to seniors, must be 16 years old by the end of the course to receive their first responder’s certification.

Curriculum includes not only physical practice on CPR dummies, but students are also required to study legal and ethical issues surrounding first responders’ duties.

Senior Erin Paul, 18, said she is planning on going into the medical field and thought the class would serve as a good springboard for her.

“I always wanted to be a nurse,” she said. “I thought this would be a good way to get a kick-start.”

Sophomore Casey White, 15, agreed.

“I already had plans to go to college somewhere in the medical field, so taking this class just made sense,” she said.

Knowing she will be able to help somebody if they need it is a big plus for Paul, she said.

But Garrett Lipsey, a 17-year-old senior, said he took the class just because it piqued his interest more than the usual offering of high school classes.

“It’s something different,” he said. “There’s not always a variety of classes, so it’s a welcome change.”

Senior Billy Metcalf, 18, agreed that the class will be useful even though he doesn’t have any plans to pursue the medical field.

“It’ll probably come in handy somewhere,” he said.