Calloway County, East Carter Earn National Banner School Status
Two Kentucky high schools – one in far western Kentucky and one in eastern Kentucky have received the highest recognition possible for schools participating in the Special Olympics Unified Champion Schools program. Calloway County High School and East Carter High School were recognized as National Banner Schools when this year’s honorees were announced on September 6. Calloway County received additional recognition as one of 30 ESPN Honor Roll schools. The schools were among 131 schools nationwide to earn National Banner School recognition in the second year of the program. Calloway County and East Carter are the first two Kentucky schools to be recognized.
The honor indicates that the schools have met 10 standards that include Unified Sports participation, inclusive youth leadership and whole school engagement. Both Calloway County and East Carter have been pioneers in the Unified Champion Schools movement in Kentucky. Recently Calloway County sent two students to participate in the Youth Leadership Experience at the 2018 USA Games.
“UCS is a club that not only promotes inclusion, but we’re a family. I’ve made so many friendships from being a part of UCS and made so many memories that I will carry with me the rest of my life. I am truly blessed to be a part of the club, and to have so many great members that are willing to make a change in our school,:” said Amanda Harpole, Calloway County UCS Co-President and four-year member.
“We could not be more excited to be presenting Calloway and East Carter with their banners this school year. By choosing to include they have both built school cultures where it doesn’t matter your intellectual difference. Everyone is included, and ALL abilities are celebrated. These two schools receiving banners are only the start to our goal of building a truly Unified Commonwealth,” said Justin Harville, Director of Volunteer and Program Services for Special Olympics Kentucky
Both schools will hold banner presentation ceremonies later in the school year.
More than 70 schools are currently participating in Special Olympics Unified Champion Schools programming in Kentucky, as part of more than 6,000 schools across the country engaged in the program. Special Olympics has a global goal of creating 10,000 Unified Champion Schools by 2020.
For more information about the Unified Champion Schools program in Kentucky, contact Justin Harville at 502-695-8222 or [email protected] or Karen Michalak-Parsley at 502-326-5002 or [email protected], or visit sokyunifiedschools.org.