Woburn Memorial High School launches unified athletic program

WOBURN – Principal Steve Martin is pleased to announce that Woburn Memorial High School will start a Unified Sports program.

The Unified Sports program, the first to be implemented in the district, begins with the creation of a high school Unified basketball team. The Borough will join others in the Middlesex League to come together and compete as a community.

The Unified Sports program offers students with disabilities the opportunity to participate in high school sports with their peers in a fun and supportive environment. The program falls under the Massachusetts Interscholastic Athletics Association (MIAA), which works with Special Olympics Massachusetts to support Unified Sports.

Jessica Stone, special education teacher and Best Buddies advisor, played a huge role in creating Woburn’s unified athletic program and was thrilled when it was launched.

“The launch of the Unified basketball team is a huge step in the right direction,” Stone said. “We’ve wanted this for a while and it’s very exciting to see it come to life. We hope to continue to develop the program and create more Unified Sports teams in the future.”

The Unified basketball team begins its season in the first week of April. The team will have one practice and one game each week and will create a flexible schedule with a rolling list to allow participants to attend when available.

The five players on the pitch include three students with disabilities and two general education students. Students will work together to keep each other engaged and involved in the game.

In addition to the regular season games, the team plans to participate in a “Hoopapalooza” mini-tournament on Wednesday, May 24, along with other teams from the region.

“All of us at Woburn are excited to see these students use their teamwork and cooperative skills to come together and play unified basketball,” said Superintendent Crowley. “A Unified Sports program is something we’ve been interested in for years. Thank you to everyone involved in its creation.”

For more information on Unified Sports, visit the Special Olympics Massachusetts Unified Sports website here and the MIAA website here.

Students at Woburn Memorial High School, many of whom will play on the school’s new Unified basketball team, pose for a photo at the Best Buddies’ March Madness fundraiser. (Photo courtesy of Woburn Public Schools)


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