Policy to have AEDs be mandatory in ALL Thames Valley District School Board schools
Automated External Defibrillators (AEDs) should be made mandatory in all public schools under TVDSB.
- Up to 40 000 cardiac arrests occur each year in Canada. This is equivalent to one every 12 minutes.
- Many of our students have heart conditions that would require this life saving device to revive them.
- When an AED (as well as CPR) are immediately available, chances of survival may increase by 75% or more.
- If an AED is used within 2 minutes of someone going in to cardiac arrest, chances of survival are 90%.
- For every one minute that passes without the use of an AED, alongside CPR, the chances of survival decrease by 7 to 10%.
- All Catholic Schools have AEDs, as well as many other school boards. (Why not us?)
This is a subject that is very close to the hearts of several schools under TVDSB, mainly in the areas of Ingersoll, Thamesford, and Zorra, as in May of last year, we lost one of our students when his heart stopped on the field while playing soccer. Bystanders rushed on to the field and started CPR, but there was no AED on sight, and consequently, he was not able to be revived.
Since then, Andrew Stoddart’s family and friends have made it our mission to spread awareness for Defibrillators. On top of this we have started a campaign, collecting money to place AEDs in the public. So far we have donated 6 of these important devices, and have several more to come.
It is confusing that all of our high schools have one on sight; yet most of our public grade schools do not. In December we placed one at Zorra Public School in Embro, and are hoping to donate many more in the future.
However, we cannot do this alone. We need your help to make these essential life saving devices mandatory in our schools, to have them available to more of our communities. Cardiac arrest can happen to anyone, young or old. It could just as easily happen to someone close to you, as it did to 15 year old Andrew.
It is time that we do more to ensure the safety of the kids, as well as staff, in our schools. I urge you to make a change in our policies, so that we can prevent others in our community from having to face a tragedy similar to this.