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IPS, Special Olympics Indiana and IUPUI host ‘Unified Game Day’

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Posted at 5:24 PM, May 16, 2024

INDIANAPOLIS — Thursday was a day full of fun for nearly 800 Indianapolis Public Schools students as IPS, Special Olympics Indiana and IUPUI held a Unified Game Day.

Activities included football and track relays, including walking, assisted walking, wheelchair races, meter runs, hurdles and relays.

The field events included long jump, ball throws, flag football and soccer.

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“It’s important for everybody to have an opportunity to participate in sports if they choose to,” Jeff Mohler, President and CEO of Special Olympics Indiana, said. “Oftentimes, a student with disabilities doesn’t get the same opportunities that their peers in general education do, so this gives them that opportunity.”

Anytime Juwan Nance gets an opportunity to cross a finish line, he's coming in hot with a win.

"It just makes me happy when I get in first place," Nance said. "I am a fast runner. I like to get touchdowns for my team."

For sixth grader Dominic, making new friends and playing sports is what the day is all about.

WATCH | The video below shows the students participating in tons of activities throughout the field day.

IPS Unified Game Day

"I played the track events. I played the soccer games. It was fun," he said.

High schooler Calvin Washington volunteered his time to make sure students with or without disabilities have a great time.

"Helping the Lifeskill students at my school and meeting other Lifeskill students from different schools. Stuff I do is stuff they do," he said.

RELATED COVERAGE | Surprise donations to Special Olympics Indiana from unlikely place (wrtv.com)

IPS Unified Student Support Officer Courtney Flucas says the district wants parents to know the following:

"Inclusion isn't just a vision or a dream. It's a reality we can make happen every single day and this field day really proves that," Flucas said. "We want our children to have fun and we want the community to know this is what inclusion looks like."

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As far as Thursday's field day goes, it gets a big thumbs up from students.

"It's awesome. I like being out here," Nance said.