Posted Date: 09/16/2020
Norwalk and Brien McMahon High Schools are receiving national banner recognition from Special Olympics Connecticut for efforts to provide inclusive sports and activities for students with and without disabilities.
As Special Olympics Unified Champion Schools, Norwalk High School and Brien McMahon High School promote meaningful social inclusion to create accepting school environments, utilizing three interconnected components: Special Olympics Unified Sports, inclusive youth leadership, and whole school engagement. More than 7,500 schools across the country are engaged in the program.
To receive national banner recognition, schools must meet 10 national standards of excellence in the areas of inclusion, advocacy and respect. These standards were developed by a national panel of leaders from Special Olympics and the education community.
As part of a select number of schools to receive this distinction, Norwalk High School and Brien McMahon High School will be presented with a banner and will be included on a list of other schools around the country who have achieved this distinguished status.
Throughout the school year students participate in a variety of sporting events and activities for athletes with and without intellectual disabilities for training and competition, building friendships along the way. A popular annual event, the Unified Basketball rivalry game between schools brings communities together. In addition to their commitment to the Unified Sports program, both schools continue to work hard to develop an inclusive school climate and exudes a sense of collaboration, engagement and respect for all members of the student body and staff. Coaches Jessica Ireland, NPS Transition Coordinator, Daniel Barrett, NHS Special Education Teacher, Kelsey LaPrad, BMHS Special Education Teacher and Stephanie Peckham, BMHS PE Teacher oversee the Unified Sports programs.