Some SCS employees learn CPR, budget could affect school health staffing

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. -- Some Shelby County School employees learned a potentially life-saving technique Wednesday that parents might find especially important in light of proposed budget cuts.

The American Heart Association and Cigna showed employees how to provide "hands only' CPR to teenagers and adults. That involves pushing against a patient's chest to the beat of the song "Stayin' Alive."

"It's really important that you're arming people to be heroes and jump into save someone's life," said American Heart Association Vice President and Executive Director Holly Ford.

The district is pushing county commissioners to close its $27 million funding gap for next school year.

A recent presentation to commissioners showed that SCS could cut 27 school health positions.

"The district will continue to serve students in various ways even with a tight budget crunch. However, I believe that it's no secret that people would be concerned that we would not be able to serve those students to that same level without having resources like our school nurses," said SCS spokesperson Kristin Tallent.

SCS said school security is trained in CPR and could help in an emergency.

Also, the AHA said there are 32 states that require high school students to learn CPR. Tennessee is one of them.

WREG asked SCS for its current number of school nurses and how many schools those nurses have to cover. WREG also asked about teachers and CPR training. As of late Wednesday afternoon, we are still waiting to hear back on those details.

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