Become a Unified Champion School
Special Olympics Unified Champion Schools® is an opportunity for schools pre-K through university level to intentionally promote meaningful social inclusion. This is accomplished by bringing together students with and without intellectual disabilities to create accepting school environments, utilizing three interconnected components: Special Olympics Unified Sports®, inclusive youth leadership, and whole school engagement. There are currently over 7,600 schools in 49 U.S. states, the District of Columbia and the commonwealth of Puerto Rico. The Special Olympics Kansas UCS program is in it’s 13th year and is active on nearly 50 campuses state-wide.
Who can become a Unified Champion School?
Any school can become a Unified Champion School! Public, private, charter, pre-k, elementary, middle school, high school, college or university, schools with or without special education programs—whatever the setting, if you’re ready to take the leap, we’ll work with you to make it happen. Complete the interest form at the button below and an SOKS staff member will reach out to you. If you would like to talk to an SOKS staff member about your school joining and potential grant funding available, please contact Taylor Obersteadt at firstname.lastname@example.org or 913-236-9290 x117.
Impact of Unified Champion Schools
In Unified Champion Schools across the country, school environments of acceptance and tolerance are becoming the standard. Unified Champion School liaisons at every education level (elementary, middle, or high school) report that the UCS program:
- Creates a more socially inclusive school climate and raises awareness about students with ID (95%).
- Increases opportunities for students with and without ID to work together (94%).
- Reduces bullying, teasing, and offensive language (94%).
- Supports students who in turn have higher levels of grit, receive better grades, and are more empathetic/compassionate.
- Increases social interaction which leads students to have more positive perceptions of their school’s inclusive climate.
Components of Unified Champion Schools
Special Olympics Unified Sports® is an inclusive program which combines individuals with intellectual disabilities (athletes) and individuals without intellectual disabilities (partners) on sports teams for training and competitions. Athletes and partners compete alongside one another, each in a meaningful and integral role.
InClusive Youth Leadership
Students with and without intellectual disabilities working together to lead and plan advocacy, awareness, and other Special Olympics and related inclusive activities throughout the school year.
Whole School Engagement
Awareness and education activities that promote inclusion and reach the majority of the school population.
2021-22 Planned Activities
Sept 8 – Unified Golf (Southeast KS)
Sept-Oct – Unified Basketball (KC Metro, Lawrence and Topeka area)
Sept – Virtual Youth Summit (State-wide)
Sept 13-Nov 7 – Unified Move Challenge (State-wide)
Sept-Nov – KSHSAA Unified Bowling
Oct – Unified Bocce (Southeast KS)
November 6 – Inclusion 5K
Jan-Feb – Unified Bocce (KC Metro, Lawrence and Topeka area)
Feb – Youth Summit (State-wide)
Feb – Polar Plunge (State-wide)
March – Spread the Word Campaign – Whole School Engagement (State-wide)
April-May Unified Bocce (Southeast KS and Wichita area)
April-May – Unified Soccer (KC Metro, Lawrence and Topeka area)
Register Now for the 2021-22 School Year
Current Unified Champion Schools
Blue – High School
Green – Middle School
Red – Elementary
Purple – College
For information on the primary UCS contact at a school, please contact us at email@example.com
CURRENT UCS SCHOOL RESOURCES
special olympics kansas UCS Banner Schools