FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
Sioux Falls, South Dakota, July 31, 2019 — SHAPE America (Society of Health and Physical Educators) and Special Olympics have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to formalize a partnership that has been in effect for over 50 years. The relationship began in 1965, when the Kennedy Foundation and AAHPERD, now known as SHAPE America, began work on organizing year-round national fitness programs for people with intellectual disabilities. Three years later, the first Special Olympics Games would take place in 1968. Now more than 50 years later, the relationship between SHAPE America and Special Olympics has flourished due to SHAPE America’s network of physical educators. These dedicated educators have emphasized the implementation of inclusive sports and fitness in the US through the Special Olympics Unified Champion Schools® program. The Unified Champion Schools program is a comprehensive three-component model that combines inclusive sports, inclusive youth leadership, and whole school engagement to create school and community climates of acceptance and inclusion.
This MOU will define the work the organizations will do in collaboration, including but not limited to:
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