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Dispatches from Dover: October 2013


The Delaware Department of Education proposed an amendment to the high school health standards to add CPR and AED instruction to the standards.  As excited as the American Heart Association is by this development, that enthusiasm is blunted by a lingering concern.  We asked the State Board of Education and the department to make clear that the instruction be based on the scientific community’s evidence-based, consensus guidelines and that students use “psychomotor learning” as the basis for the standard.  Unfortunately, the board did not include this provision.

Simply put, students need to push on a mannequin to really learn CPR, even “hands-only” CPR.  Period.  CPR at its essence is a physical act and a physical skill which can’t be adequately learned unless students get down and pushing on a mannequin.   

Since the board did not include this provision, we are going to have to try to add the provision through legislation. We are working to find a bill sponsor to move forward legislation that would require psychomotor learning.

Action: Ask a teacher, school official or elected representative to talk to the board of education and the Secretary of Ed. Visit our Take Action center to send your legislator a message today letting them know this issue is important to you and encourage others to send a message through Facebook, Twitter, and good old-fashioned phone calls and emails.

To learn more about CPR as a graduation requirement, please visit Also, have you or someone you know been saved by CPR? If so, please take the time to share your story with us.

Thank you for everything you do!

Jonathan Kirch
DE Government Relation Director

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