From Special Olympics of Texas: "Brady High School has been recognized as the second Unified Champion School in the state of Texas.
The Unified Champion Schools program is changing the lives of students throughout the United States by promoting inclusion and acceptance of students with and without intellectual disabilities. More than 100 elementary, middle school and high school campuses throughout Texas participate in the Unified Champion Schools program.
Typically developing students participate alongside students who have intellectual disabilities – as peers, not as “helpers.” All students engage in self-advocacy, friendship, fitness and sports opportunities together, building relationships that help to change the atmosphere of campuses away from bullying and toward inclusion.
To be a Recognized Unified Champion School, a campus Unified Champion Club must:
Touch each of the core components of Unified Champion Schools (Inclusive Youth Leadership & Activation, Unified Sports and Whole School Involvement)
Include both typically developing and intellectually disabled students on its leadership team.
Participate in at least in Unified Sports in at least one area: Unified Recreation, Unified Sports Player Development or Unified Sports (competing in Special Olympics local, area, state, national or world competitions)
Brady High School hosts a Unified Club consisting of 11 athletes, students with intellectual or developmental disabilities, and 11 partners, typically developing students, that meets at every Tuesday during a set period of the day. They host Unified pep rallies, participate in all three levels of Unified Sports through Unified Recreation, Unified Player Development, and Competitive Unified Sports such as bocce, powerlifting, basketball and track. They also feature a and opportunity for Unified Band, Student Council, FCCLA, and FFA.
Brady High School received a gym banner that denotes their honor.
“Under the guidance of Kami Dodds, Brady HS is only the second campus in the State to receive the status of Recognized Unified Champion School,” said Alice Keller, director of Youth Initiatives for Special Olympics Texas. “As a Recognized Unified Champion School Brady High School is on the path to receive national banner recognition from Special Olympics North America.”
Created in 2008, the program has been funded by the U.S. Department of Education. Until last year, the program was known in Texas as Meet In the Middle.
About Special Olympics Texas
Special Olympics Texas (SOTX) is a privately funded non-profit organization that changes lives through the power of sport by encouraging and empowering people with intellectual disabilities, promoting acceptance for all, and fostering communities of understanding and respect. SOTX provides continuing opportunities for more than 58,300 children and adults with intellectual disabilities throughout the Lone Star State to realize their potential, develop physical fitness, demonstrate courage and experience joy and friendship. To learn more, visit www.specialolympicstexas.org or call 800.876.5646. Engage with us on: Twitter@SOTexas; fb.com/SpecialOlympicsTX;youtube.com/specialolympicstexas. Visit the SOTX – Unified Champion Schools Facebook page at fb.com/UnifiedChampionsTX."