The National Federation of State High School Associations supports Unified Sports, as do many state high school leagues, Disney, ESPN and many other world-wide youth friendly organizations. Unified Sports is growing in many schools across the country, and Special Olympics Minnesota hopes your school is next to join this inclusive movement!
Unified Sports School Invitationals provide a great introduction to Unified Sports. This is a FREE activity for students, families and school districts; support and resources are provided so that a school can easily create an environment of inclusion. Invitationals empower special education and general education students ages 8-21 to get to know one another, play a sport together and develop friendships that have a meaningful impact on and off the playing field.
Join the 50+ schools that already participate in Unified Sports and begin the Play Unified movement at your school today!
Sports and seasons
Unified Bowling Invitational — Fall
Unified Basketball Invitational — Winter
Unified Track and Field Invitational — Spring
How to get started
Forms needed to participate
- Team form — signed by a teacher (one team form required per school) (pdf)
- Participant Waiver – students AND teachers must complete (pdf)
Who can participate
- Ages 8-21; all abilities, disabilities and skill levels (most schools separate Unified team by levels: elementary, middle school or high school)
- Student athletes: individuals with an intellectual disability
- Student partners: individuals without an intellectual disability
- Coaches: student leaders, paras or teachers
Ideally each school would have an equal number of student athletes and student partners, but it’s OK to have more of one than the other.
What’s the cost
NONE! Unified Sports School Invitationals are free for the first year. We provide schools with team shirts, sports equipment and the bus cost to a school Invitational. Email email@example.com to get your Unified Sports shirts and equipment.
Unified Sports activities during school
- Incorporate Unified Sports into DAPE or Phy Ed, once a week
- Provide a leadership/study hour for special ed and general ed students to get together to play Unified
- Promote an after school Unified practice to all special ed and general ed students in the district and invite them to come
School Invitationals — events at the end of the season
- At the end of each season, compete against other schools
- Weekday events held during the school day
- Unified Sports Invitationals will include interactive activities and informational sessions on topics like Spread the Word to End the Word (anti-bullying), volunteerism, Polar Plunge and Unified Schools