Churchville Elementary School has been supporting the American Heart Association’s events (Hoops for Heart, Jump Rope for Heart and Kids Heart Challenge) for 22 years! Last year, CES ranked #4 in NYS by raising $25,420 and has been recognized as a leader in supporting the AHA. The school continues to participate in the Kids Heart Challenge to teach students about the importance of heart health, exercise and giving back to others. “We want our students to understand how even our little school can make a big impact when we all come together to help,” stated PE teacher Bethany Matsko.
This year, the school is celebrating one of their own students as a heart hero. Caleb entered the world as a small but healthy baby. At 9 months his growth slowed dramatically. After many tests, it was determined he had an undiagnosed heart defect. Caleb’s heart had holes that allowed oxygen rich blood to mix with oxygen poor blood, making his heart work twice as hard. Caleb received open heart surgery just before his second birthday. Doctors said if Caleb hadn’t received this surgery, he would have continued to have delayed growth and additional complications. Caleb saw tremendous growth after surgery and caught up with his peers within a year! This story is not uncommon; one in 100 children are born with a heart defect, making it the most common birth defect. Today, Caleb is doing well and is an active fourth-grade student. In his honor, and to help the many others affected with heart issues, CES rallied and raised $28,463, beating last year’s record! As a reward, students slimed their Principal, Assistant Principal and PE teachers!