Iola Special Olympics making national noise

A Special Olympics unified team that pairs general education students with those with disabilities will represent the Iola Special Olympics Unified Sports team and the state of Kansas in the 2022 National Unified Champion School Program. 

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Sports

September 21, 2022 - 2:05 PM

Iola’s Special Olympics team competes after a regional basketball meet. Photo by Ann Bates

A Special Olympics unified team that pairs general education students with those with disabilities will represent the Iola Special Olympics Unified Sports team and the state of Kansas in the 2022 National Unified Champion School Program. 

Ann Bates, a special education teacher for USD 257, has coached  the district’s Special Olympics team for the last three years.

“Our unified team is basically a program that pairs our Special Olympic athletes with their non-disabled peers at school,” Bates said. “What I like most about this program is the relationship it creates between those two populations of people.”

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