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Special Olympics School Programs
The transformative power of sport

Join an inclusive and passionate community that lasts well beyond your time at school.

Our Impact
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104

School competitions

170 

Participating schools

12,000+

Total student athletes

Welcome!

Welcome to the 2023-2024 School Year! Special Olympics Ontario is looking forward to bringing new events, experiences and improved programming to our schools this upcoming school year! Both in-person and virtual programming are back in full swing!

Programs

Special Olympics Ontario (SOO) School Programs and events are available for students aged 2-25. Our programs assist student-athletes, with and without intellectual disabilities (ID), develop physical literacy, develop and practice social skills, learn about teamwork and inclusion, and be a part of their school’s sports teams. The programs we offer span all levels of education, from elementary schools, intermediate schools, and secondary schools, as well as universities and colleges. 

Unified Sport

Special Olympics Unified Sport is an inclusive sports program that brings people with and without intellectual disabilities together through competition. It was motivated by the straightforward idea that friendship and understanding may be quickly attained via playing and training together. Teams in Unified Sports are composed of individuals with comparable ages and skill levels. 

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Is Special Olympics School Programs for you?

Click here to watch the french version
Special Olympics Ontario School Programs are inclusive and available to students of all ages and skill levels. Whether you're in elementary, secondary, post-secondary, or even before starting school, our programs welcome participants from any type of institution (public, private, or catholic) across each major city in the province. 
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Active Start

FUNdamentals

Multi-Sport

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ATHLETES
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PROGRAMS
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EVENTS
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SCHOOL BOARDS

Testimonials

"SO school programs really give my students a place to shine. They see the other sports teams competing and now they are able to do that as well. It helped them with their self-esteem, confidence, and enjoyment of the game."
- Crystal Peiman, John Diefenbaker Senior School

"We'd participated in qualifiers before but this was our first year going to Provincials. It was an amazing experience and now we plan to do whatever we can to qualify students each year."
- Mark Nicholson, Central Etobicoke H.S

"I have been teaching for 34 years. My affiliation with the Special Olympics has been a highlight of my career. I am retiring but will continue to promote and support the Special Olympics."
- Janice Yemensky, Notre Dame H.S.

"Our athletes' participation in the unified 3 on 3 basketball and everyone was focused on making sure that everyone on each team was included in the game. It brought out the best in everyone and was a true example of what playing sports is all about: having fun!"
- Rick Ronberg, Notre Dame H.S. (Ottawa)

"The positive effects of School Special Olympics can never be measured. Keeping students active in a fun and safe environment is good for both physical and mental health. Unified sports have added a whole new dimension that enriches the lives of both those with and without intellectual disabilities."
- Cory Randell, PEAK Central (Richmond Hill)

"This is the first year that we have played unified basketball. My students love playing basketball. Unified basketball gave them an opportunity to play with members of the school team. The level of skill was elevated and they were challenged. It was an incredible experience for all."
- Joanne Cornelisse, PEAK North (Huron Heights)

"The Provincial School Championships provide our students with so many opportunities that they otherwise would not have had. They watch their peers travel with friends and sport teams representing their school, and often think these opportunities are beyond them. The Provincial School Championships provide them with opportunities to be like their peers."
- Tara Shewchuk, Westgate C.V.I.

"Going to the Provincial Championships with a UNIFIED soccer team was an amazing experience. Our students without disabilities blew me away with their commitment to the team and their teammates. They, along with Special Olympics School Program, gave my students an experience that they will never forget!"
- Marnee Giuliani, Superior Heights

    PROUD SUPPORTERS

    Unified Sports

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    Unified Champion Schools

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    Help us capture the excitement of School Programs! If you have any photos, videos, or content from events that you have attended this year, please share them on our Google Drive!
    Click here to share your photos