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New all-abilities programs offered through Sporting Schools

24 February 2021

SPECIAL OLYMPICS Australia has partnered with Sporting Schools national sporting organisations (NSOs) to offer inclusive sport programs.

Special Olympics Australia has collaborated with partner NSOs to adapt mainstream programs available through Sporting Schools into Sport Partner versions designed for delivery in special education settings.

Pierre Comis, Special Olympics Australia’s Head of Schools and Participation, said: “Children with intellectual disability experience additional challenges developing the skills and behaviours to be physically active and are frequently more sedentary than those without disabilities.”

“Partnering with NSOs to adapt the programs they provide through Sporting Schools is vital to building the capacity of the sector and getting more children involved in inclusive sport.”

The Sport Partner programs increase the skills of coaches and teachers to provide a variety of fun, engaging programs which are suitable for children of all ability levels.

They are designed to support the development of children’s physical literacy – the skills, knowledge, and behaviours that give them confidence and motivation to lead active and healthy lives.

Programs are delivered by specially trained NSO coaches, with additional support and resources provided by Special Olympics Australia to increase their confidence to teach children with disabilities.

Special Olympics Australia already offers inclusive programs in schools called ‘Playing for All’. Comis said the new Sport Partner programs offer children a progression from Playing for All programs into more sport-specific games and activities.

“We’ve developed a clear program pathway for students with intellectual disability and autism that fosters the continued development of their physical literacy, setting them on the path to a healthier and more active life.”

Sport Partner programs will be available from Term 2, 2021 through Sporting Schools in partnership with the following NSOs:

  • AFL (only offered in NSW initially)
  • Athletics Australia
  • Cricket Australia
  • Golf Australia
  • Gymnastics Australia
  • Tennis Australia
  • Tenpin Bowling Australia

Visit the Special Olympics Australia page for more information.

five children playing sport

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