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YUHSD Migrant Summer Academy certifies more than 60 students in CPR and AEDs

A record number of students attended this summer’s weeklong Migrant Academy at Kofa High School and received training to potentially save lives.

The academy, which wrapped up Friday, serves seasonal families and gives sophomores, juniors and seniors from schools across Yuma Union High School District an opportunity to have a start-to-finish experience in one location, according to Kofa English teacher Tammy Foley, who along with Athletic Trainer and Career and Technical Education teacher Kathy Hoover, helped oversee this summer’s program.

This year 67 students participated, more than double from a year ago.  

Overall, it was the fourth summer the academy has been in place at Kofa, and it was designed to answer the essential question: “How can we have more of our community CPR and AED trained to save lives?”

The more than 15 teachers involved in the academy did so by integrating Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) and Automated External Defibrillator (AED) training and certification into a variety of lesson plans crossing into vocabulary, mathematics, biology, and technical training. The students also learned valuable classroom tools, such as how to more effectively contribute to class discussions, advocate for themselves and ask questions, and exude confidence when speaking in front of groups of their peers.  

One activity required students to locate the nearest first-responders to a given community on a map and then draw the radius depicting which communities would be reached within four minutes (the time a healthy human brain can survive without oxygen before incurring permanent damage).

“There was a realization that there are areas of our county that are underserved,” Foley said. “That hit home because it really showed the students that their knowledge is important and valuable and that they have a lifesaving skill.”

By the end of the week, all 67 students were CPR certified.

“It makes me feel really special because you never know when you will find a situation where you might need to give someone CPR,” said Briza, who is an incoming junior at Kofa and in the academy for the second summer in a row. “And now we know what to do.”

The YUHSD Migrant Education Program’s goal is to support every migrant student to graduate on time each year. To reach that goal, the program provides services to students and families in both academics and social-service based areas to meet their needs. That can include payment for class fees or uniforms, assistance with students in dual enrolling at Arizona Western College and assisting with students in the summer by enrolling in them in the PASS Program and the summer academy.

A student at the YUHSD Migrant Summer Academy demonstrates how to use CPR to save a life.   Students used geometry and mapping functions to determine which areas of the community would be at-risk if CPR was needed.  Students participated in numerous team-building activities at the Migrant Summer Academy.

Eric Patten