Collaborative Opportunities for Schools & Community Partners
There has been significant progress in the United States integrating students with disabilities into school and community sports programs. Most of this inclusion has been in track & field, and swimming, Twenty states reported inclusion in track at some level in their school athletic program. Referencing the Dear Colleague Letter that was distributed to schools, school districts, state associations, and state education departments. There is an increased need for schools to have access to resources for the inclusion of students with disabilities into their athletic programs.
For many schools providing athletic opportunities to students with disabilities, whether it be as a mainstream athletic program or allied unified sports (please refer to Addendum A Definition), is a new experience. School administrators, athletic directors, and coaches may have concerns about budget, equipment, training, transportation, medical concerns, injuries, liability, etc. Community partners have a long and established history of providing sports to individuals with disabilities so it makes sense to partner with schools to provide the support and resources for successful athletic programs for students with disabilities. Each state and school district may vary as to how they provide equal access to extracurricular activities for students who with a disability.
What is a Community Partner?
It is an organization that is based within a community that is providing sports and recreation but is not school based. Majority of community organizations are nonprofit organizations. For the purpose of this document examples of community organizations may include, but may not be limited to: Disabled Sports USA Chapters, Paralympic Sport Clubs, Wheelchair and Ambulatory Sports USA Clubs, American Association of Adapted Sports Program, and Special Olympics programs. There may be geographic boundaries if the community organizations is a tax based agency such as a park district or special recreation association.
Please keep us updated on your outreach as we may be able to financially support your endeavors when funds are available.
For more information contact: