Cobb Schools Wins Third Straight National Championship for AHA's Kids Heart Challenge


Students in Cobb County completed the Kids Heart Challenge this school year, supporting their long-term mental and physical health while raising funds to support the mission of the American Heart Association, a global force for healthier lives for all. Of the over 4,000 school districts participating in the Kids Heart Challenge nationwide, Cobb County Schools has been recognized as the top school district in the country for the third consecutive year.

"The Georgia Bulldogs could not pull off a three-peat national championship, but we did," said Superintendent Chris Ragdale at the May Board of Education meeting. Once again, the Cobb County School District is the top-raising district in the country for the American Heart Association. A huge thank you to all of our team members and students who helped put together all of the events, which resulted in us being national champions for the third time. It's an awesome testimony to what we can do for a great cause."

Cobb Schools has participated in the Kids Heart Challenge for over 40 years. Nearly 17,000 students raised more than $860,000 this year, easily breaking last year's record! These funds will help support the American Heart Association’s scientific research and outreach programs, paving the way for breakthroughs and advancements that improve health outcomes and create healthier communities.

Cobb Schools contributed $310,000 more than the second-place competitor in the 2023-24 Kids Heart Challenge. In addition, Cobb outpaced the closest Georgia competitor by nearly half a million dollars ($490,664)! These funds will help kids around the country, and even local children like Cobb’s very own Heart Hero Ambassador, Declan Paul, from Still Elementary School:

The American Heart Association’s Kids Heart Challenge™ offers a variety of physical activities to get elementary students’ hearts pumping, such as dance, basketball, or jumping rope, paired with digital missions to learn lifesaving skills like Hands-Only CPR™. The program has more than 40 years of proven success rooted in scientific research, which showed that kids who are regularly active feel better, improve their mental health, build self-esteem, and prevent conditions such as anxiety and depression.


“As we know, the early years play a vital role in the development of health-related behaviors. Placing emphasis on establishing healthy environments and behaviors can help students understand the importance of wellness,” said Marcus Brown, interventional cardiologist at Northside Heart Institute and Metro Atlanta American Heart Association board president. “Giving health a specific moment in time, especially in light of the pandemic, is an important way for our school to support our students.”

The educational curriculum and physical activities included in the Kids Heart Challenge program help meet the heart health needs of today’s youth and educators. The program, a successful part of thousands of schools from coast to coast, targets improving whole-body wellness, which is vital to driving immediate and long-term health in children.

“The Kids Heart Challenge program inspires and grows our students' understanding of wellness in a fun and innovative way,” said Superintendent Ragsdale. “Pairing that excitement with raising funds for children with special hearts allows our students to continuously grow their commitment to wellness beyond just themselves. We’re thrilled to continue to propel the mission of the Association as the Three-Peat National Champions of Kids Heart Challenge.”