Saving Lives at School #AED4IPS

At least three students who attended high school at Indianapolis Public Schools (IPS) since 2009 are alive today because of an $1,100 device called an Automated External Defibrillator (AED). In the latest incident, 13-year-old Kenedi Cheatam, a student who collapsed at Crispus Attucks High School, was saved by two IPS teachers trained to use an AED.

“I feel like we’ve been very fortunate that the AEDs were where we needed them when they were needed,” says Kathy Sparks, a team leader for Indiana University Health Orthopedics & Sports Medicine who oversees the IPS athletic training program and helps IPS track and maintain the few AEDs it has. 

All IPS high schools now have at least one AED—a total of 41 throughout the system. That’s a far cry from the need identified by an IPS committee organized in 2009 to study the matter. The group made a proposal to IPS, calling for 200 AEDs, which would cost $300,000 including maintenance. That would put at least one device in every IPS school, including elementary schools.

IPS doesn’t have the money to cover this need and has relied mostly on grants and donations for the few AEDs it has. That means the school system has no choice but to put the lifesaving devices where they are needed most, which is mostly in high school athletics.

At Methodist Health Foundation, we're doing everything we can to improve cardiovascular health in central Indiana. That's why we've partnered with IPS Education Foundation and Cardiac Science Corporation to raise awareness and funding to help 40 IPS schools (currently without AEDs) obtain this life-saving technology.

Your donation at any level ensures that students, teachers, coaches and parents have an Automated External Defibrillator at their school to help save lives. Choose "Other" to designate your donation to AED4IPS.