Showing Love at the Special Olympics

The OHS Special Olympics bring us closer together

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Oxnard High School recently hosted an amazing event for the second time in a row: the Special Olympics. This event was brought to our school by Ms. Sheeran, the special education teacher of autism and the Special Olympic liaison. It was decided that OHS would play a game of basketball against Pacifica High School on February 13, and then Buena High School on February 28. Oxnard High ended up losing both times, but every player came out of it as winners as many student-athletes, coaches, and students came to support our Special Olympic students. OHS even had the opportunity to hear Bella Ruff sing the National Anthem.

Many of the SPED players were accompanied by a partner from the Law Academy and OHS seniors. Other schools also had partners on the court with the players. Students that were chosen as a partner for the game thought it was a phenomenal experience. OHS senior Nathan Rangel said, “I’m actually very proud to be a part of this event, it’s really fun.”

Ms. Sheeran’s students were proud of their class because of how far they pushed themselves during practices in order to be ready for their game days. One of the players, Austin Mendoza said, “It has been really great. I liked it, I made a lot of shots.”

The success of the Special Olympic games have led to more schools wanting to join in and put on their own games. Ms. Sheeran hopes to increase the number of schools that offer Special Olympic basketball games. Including more schools will let others all around Ventura County get the opportunity to participate in an event many enjoy playing and watching.

 

Along with hoping to expand the Special Olympics to more school sites, Ms. Sheeran would also like to use the term “respect” used more with this student community. Some of the public looks negatively upon SPED students by using words such as retard though they are just like anyone else and therefore should be respected. That is why Ms. Sheeran organized a campaign called The R-Word Campaign to use positive words like disabled out of respect for these individuals. These students are rising above their disabilities and achieving new skills by putting on a great game for the school to enjoy.

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