A New Unified Champion School
Sol and Ocean, Special Olympics Youth Leaders from Hawaii, plan to make their elementary school a Unified Champion Banner school with their Youth Innovation Project. To meet the Unified Champion Banner school standard, Sol and Ocean’s elementary school needs Whole School Engagement in the Special Olympics vision of Unified. But a plan is already in place to make this a reality. By working with different student organizations, and in partnership with the Media Academy, Sol and Ocean will enhance overall inclusion on campus and attain their goal.
Students from the Special Olympics Unified Sports Team, Student Congress, and the Who’s Who Club will be spotlighted in a video series highlighting inclusion that will be played for all students on campus. This mini-documentary series will show the student body more about the inclusive opportunities available to all students on campus. The school’s Unified Leadership Team, composed of students with and without intellectual disabilities, Unified Partners, Special Olympics athletes, teachers, skill trainers, counselors, parents, and the principal, determined the video series would be a great way to showcase student involvement while also documenting the improvements made throughout the year.
Through this series, inclusion can come to campus in ways other than athletics. By engaging organizations like Student Congress, Who’s Who Club, and the Leadership Team, there is an increased opportunity for students to get involved in other areas on campus.
Through this project, Sol and Ocean hope to show all students on campus the importance of inclusion. As involved members of Special Olympics Hawaii, they have had the opportunity to engage in various activities to promote inclusion and will use these tools to change the culture at their school. To them, being part of the Unified Generation means that “Everyone has value! We are all special and we should work to ensure that everyone's contribution is welcomed!"