New Special Olympics Athletes

Posted On Thursday January 30, 2020
Yoel from Roland Michener PS gave Constable Armorer a high five after he successfully completed the obstacle course.

Students from Ajax schools come together for Special Olympics fun

On January 10th, Durham District School Board’s (DDSB) Bolton C. Falby PS hosted a Special Olympics event. Approximately 60 students from DaVinci PS, Lincoln Alexander PS, Eagle Ridge PS, Roland Michener PS and Bolton C. Falby PS participated. Additionally, 18 student volunteers and 30 staff from the various schools worked together to make the event a success.   

“We wanted to do something for our non-neurotypical students to be able to participate in and be able to have the same opportunities as some of our mainstream students,” explains Conor Jinkinson, Principal at Bolton C. Falby PS. 

The day started out with a warm welcome from the Bolton C. Falby student volunteers and staff, who cheered and gave the visiting student athletes high fives as they entered the building. The smiles were contagious!

Justin Heenan is the Growth School Teacher and he was the lead organizer for the day, which included 12 activities such as bean bag tossing, an obstacle course, block bowling, curling, and soccer, to name a few.

He has been involved with the Special Olympics since 2013 and he loves working with the kids and seeing them engage with each other. He also runs the local Active Start and Fundamentals Program where kids from two to six years old and seven to 12 years old can participate.

“I’ve been very involved in the Special Olympics and it’s been a big part of my life,” Heenan shares. “We have a ton of kids from our schools. I’m expecting the kids to have lots of physical activity and lots of fun.”

The school was also very happy to have Trustee Donna Edwards and her daughter Victoria volunteer. Edwards is no stranger to the Special Olympics and their events in the Durham Region.

“I really think that Special Olympics has a lot to offer and this is an introduction of some of the things that we can do for our students with special needs and help them feel successful, and participate and live a healthier lifestyle,” Edwards explains.

Edwards hopes there will be more events like this at more Durham District School Board schools, to create more competitive programs for these student athletes.

The future looks bright!