Houston High School hosted its first ever Tennessee Secondary School Athletic Association (TSSAA) Unified Track Event this year.
This new competition, which will initially begin as an Invitational Championship, was first implemented during the 2018 TN Spring Fling Championships. The Unified Track Event demonstrated a beginning of a partnership between TSSAA and Special Olympics Tennessee.
Dedicated to promoting social inclusion through shared sports training and competition experiences, Unified Sports joins students with and without intellectual disabilities on the same team. It was inspired by the principle that practicing and competing together promotes inclusion and understanding to help break down stereotypes.
“We are honored to be asked to host this event and provide the opportunity and experience for our students they deserve,” said Athletic Director Chad Becker. In each event, students with disabilities compete with typical peers and scores from both are totaled together.
Events included in the inaugural TSSAA Unified Track & Field Invitational will be the 100 meter Dash, 400 meter Run, 4×100 meter Relay, Shot Put, and Long Jump. The Unified Track & Field events will be incorporated into the existing Spring Fling Track & Field schedule, with individual medals awarded and a Unified Track & Field Champion and Runner-up team decided.
The Houston athletes tied for first place and will compete at the state meet in two weeks. Connor Dawson, Baylee Davis and Breonna Allen will represent Houston High School.