We are back!!!

Acalanes High School is continuing to offer a Unified Sports Program in partnership with Special Olympics Northern California. Dedicated to promoting social inclusion through shared sports training and competition experiences, Unified Sports joins students receiving special education services and their general education peers on the same team. It was inspired by a simple principle: training together and playing together is a quick path to friendship and understanding.

Soccer season runs Sept through mid-November with 2 practices a week after school.

Students will participate in a league format, similar to other sporting events at their school. They will have the opportunity to travel to other schools in the area for competitions.  Each school will have its own soccer coach, AHS’s Alex Topping, and special education coach, Ms. Margaret Cerecedes (an ESC teacher) offer their valuable helmsmanship. Approximately 12 athletes get paired 1:1 with volunteer general Ed students, many from the Acalanes soccer teams.

We asked Acalanes parent Shelly Hamalian for her thoughts on the program:

“It’s priceless to me for my son Sammy to have these kinds of interactions with boys his own age who won’t bully or laugh at him. Sammy doesn’t have “friends” the way most kids do who grow up here having classmates and teammates that then become friends into high school. The easy social exchanges that the typical boys help foster in Unified Sports is what every parent hopes their child will experience. I had tears in my eyes watching Sammy play soccer with some of the boys from the soccer team. They encouraged, but didn’t over encourage, they congratulated but didn’t over do it. It was “coregulation” at its best. Thank you so much for this program that you provide for our kids.”

Look for announcements about a lunch time “ Home “ game.

As mentioned, soccer will run until mid Nov, then basketball Jan-Mar finishing with  track Mar-Apr.

For more information, please contact Holly Thompson (hthompson@auhsdschools.org).

We are excited to begin this new season of Special Olympics Unified Sports…Let the Games Begin!