Youngest students in very special Olympics

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Everyone gets a chance to feel special on Feb. 19 when Miwok Elmentary School and the South County Consortium hosts a Special Olympics Young Athletes event at Miwok School.

Special Olympics Young Athletes is a sport and play program that introduces children with and without intellectual disabilities, ages 2-6 to the world of sport.

Events include such activities as walking on a floor-level balance beam, jumping on targets and throwing, catching and kicking a ball.

The event offers families, teachers, caregivers and people from the community a chance to share the joy of sports with the children.

The Miwok event will include South County Consortium preschool special day classes from McKinley, Two Rock and Miwok schools participating with Miwok transitional kindergarten students and their friends from their special days class.

Buddies from Miwok’s fifth- and sixth-grade classes will help coordinate the events.

“This is very exciting,” said Melinda Susan, South County Consortium Director. “It gives our students an opportunity to participate in an inclusive event with other students, and it helps the Miwok students develop a respect for diversity.”

Breakfast for the athletes will be served at 9 a.m., followed by fun and games around 9:45.

“As far as I know, this will be the first time a Special Olympics event has been held with very young participants,” Susan said. “We are hoping it will continue.”

The event is supported by community volunteers and businesses who, among other support, have supplied T-shirts and breakfast for the participants.

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