ABU DHABI, 5th December, 2022 (WAM) -- Special Olympics UAE announced that 255 schools nationwide have achieved the Unified School status for the academic year 2021-2022.
The Unified Champion Schools Programme fosters inclusive school environments for students through Unified Sports, Inclusive Youth Leadership and Whole School Engagement, which are the three main components of the programme.
Shamma bint Suhail Faris Al Mazrui, Minister of State for Youth Affairs, and Chairperson of the Board of Trustees of Special Olympics UAE, said that progressive schools enhance all students' experiences by building an empowering community, as they are places that put students at the centre of everything they do, embrace a culture of inclusion, respect and acceptance, and achieve a balance between community and individuality.
She added, "Special Olympics UAE is delighted to work with many of these schools in the UAE; ones that have earned the titles of Unified Schools and Unified Champion Schools and others that are working towards achieving these titles this year. Their commitment helps us in realising the programme's goals that focus on creating an inclusive community.
"We are very proud of the exceptional efforts of these schools and teachers who have worked hard to learn more about their students with intellectual and developmental disabilities through numerous bespoke professional development sessions offered by Special Olympics UAE, with specialist trainers in response to teacher feedback and evaluation of school challenges, to ensure that they understand how to support them, whether on an educational or a social level within school activities."
"To all Unified Champion Schools 2021-2022, your role doesn't end here, as inclusion is not just a program, it's a way of existing, and we all play a role in the sustainability of this impact." Al Mazrui concluded.