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Unified Champion Athletes Exhibit Unity in Victory

Unified Champion Athletes Exhibit Unity in Victory
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Mt. Vernon Community School Corporation (MVCSC) celebrated three Unified Champions field days in May with preschool, elementary, middle and high school students participating in the fun. Unified Champions is a Special Olympics program that engages schools in creating climates of inclusion, acceptance, respect, and human dignity for ALL students. Students with and without disabilities competed on the same teams to provide an inclusive environment where every student participates regardless of athletic, intellectual, ambulatory, or functional abilities.

The three elementary schools hosted one Unified Champion event with many students from each elementary. The students from the three schools were combined into mixed groups in an effort to meet new friends. The students started the day with the National Anthem and a walk around the Mt. Vernon High School track. The elementary students then rotated through various fun activities that were located in the middle of the track, such as: jumping over mini hurdles, running relay races, throwing plastic javelins (pool noodles), and long jumping. 

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Mt. Vernon Middle School and Mt. Vernon High School also hosted their Unified Champion event with lunch at the high school track. Their event consisted of similar activities as the elementary school event and students enjoyed the sunshine while they supported each other and cheered on their peers. The champions rotated through various activities including running baton races, discus throwing, jumping over mini hurdles, running relay races and a fan favorite of throwing a ball to send a peer or teacher plunging into the dunk tank. Students also drew Unified Champions pictures with sidewalk chalk and played with bubbles.

The middle and high school event ended by awarding the Andrew Mize Unified Champions Participant of the Year Award to Seth Eads. This annual award is in honor of a Mt. Vernon student, Andrew Mize, who passed away unexpectedly in April of 2018. 

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The Mini-Marauder Preschool also hosted a Unified Champions field day at the middle school track. Smiles were all around the activity stations including tossing tennis balls into a crate, running relay races, jumping over mini hurdles, kicking balls into a soccer net, balancing on a colorful beam, racing tricycles and more. Students in the Mt. Vernon Middle School Marauder Movement led the activities at each of the stations. The Mini-Marauders practiced teamwork and patience while having a lot of fun in the sun.

Special thanks to CSO and Greenfield Banking Company for sponsoring all the Unified Champions t-shirts for participating students and staff. In addition, these successful experiences for our students are due to all the staff who planned the event, coordinated the student volunteers and worked with the athletes. 

MVCSC is proud to be a Unified School District and a participant of the Unified Champion Special Olympics program. Mt. Vernon places importance on providing these opportunities for students to grow by engaging, educating and empowering each child.

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