School / Youth Programs

Special Olympics School Programs

Special Olympics Ontario is dedicated to enriching the lives of young people with an intellectual disability through sport. School programs is one way that youth can begin training and competing in sports while learning about the benefits of physical activity. Teachers can include Special Olympics in their physical education curriculum. They can also develop lunch and/or after school clubs which provide extracurricular and interscholastic sports to elementary and secondary students with intellectual disabilities. School Athletes are eventually encouraged to transition into community club programs as they near graduation from High School.

The Four Corners initiative has been a dynamic addition to school programs, with several sport tournaments offered in communities across the province. Student athletes and teams have an opportunity to qualify for the Four Corners School Championships in the spring.

For more information, please contact our School Programs Developer, Kirsten Bobbie: Phone (416) 447- 8326 Ext. 247 or Email

Visit our School Programs page for more information.

Special Olympics Youth Programs

In fall 2010, Special Olympics introduced initiatives to promote youth development within the organization. To support these initiatives, we have developed programs specifically geared for children ages 2-21.

Active Start is a 12 week program for children ages 2-6 years of age. The Active Start Program supports the rationale that if children with intellectual disabilities are provided early instruction in the areas of basic motor skills and developmentally appropriate play that there is an excellent opportunity for improvement in physical, social and cognitive abilities. By participating in weekly activities that focus on the basic motor skills of manipulation, transport, and balance, children will then gain perspective on their development skills.

The FUNdamentals program is a follow up to the Active Start Program and strives to provide young athletes (7 to 12 years of age) with a more in-depth introduction to sport-related motor skills, training, and competition while maintaining an atmosphere of fun and meaningful interaction. An additional role is providing continued education about nutrition, physical fitness, and the importance of the support of the family unit in developing a healthy athlete. The FUNdamentals program also introduces young athletes and caregivers to the sporting opportunities and resources provided through Special Olympics.

The Youth Sport programs is designed to give young athletes (ages 13 to 21 years) their first taste of an organized, sport-specific training program. It was developed specifically for youth with an intellectual disability and promotes the development of basic motor and sport skills and game play in a fun and positive environment.

Youth Sport programs also provide information about the game being played including the rules and history of the sport, promotes proper nutrition social network building, and an opportunity for local, regional, and major game competition.

For more information on the above programs, contact our pahl and Youth Programs Developer, Natasha Jaczek at or (416) 447-8326 ext. 246.