Students bring home medals from Special Olympics

Limestone Learning Foundation
Students bring home medals from Special Olympics
Posted on 05/27/2019
Image of GREC students Nick Anderson and Devin Cooney at the Special Olympics Youth Invitational Games.

Several School to Community students with the Limestone District School Board earned an impressive medal haul at the recent Youth Invitational Games hosted by Special Olympics in Toronto May 14 to 17.

Students from Napanee District Secondary School (NDSS) earned gold in soccer and silver in bocce. The team from Loyalist Collegiate & Vocational Institute (LCVI) earned gold in field hockey and basketball. LCVI track and field athletes Ila Crogie and Paige Peterson each earned individual gold medals in the 200 metres and standing long jump respectively. Granite Ridge Education Centre student Devin Cooney received a gold medal in shotput and two silver medals in the 100 metres and 400 metres. His teammate, Nick Anderson, earned a gold (with a personal best) in long jump and a bronze medal in the 100 metres.

Image of NDSS Special Olympics bocce teamMike Newstead, a School to Community Teacher at NDSS, says students look forward to the competition every year, and ensure they enter local qualifier events. “Every year our students look forward to the competition and we have had quite a bit of success at our school at the provincial level.”

Student athletes have to qualify in regional competitions during the fall and early winter. Athletes then practise regularly prior in gym class, and sometimes at lunch to learn all of the rules leading up to the tournament. “We review what qualities are important for a team to be successful including teamwork, communication, supporting one another, hard work, determination, sportsmanship, etc.,” says Mr. Newstead. “This experience has given many athletes at our school an opportunity for success and many are proud to be a Special Olympic athlete.”

Image of LCVI Special Olympics basketball teamOver the years, many athletes have been given opportunities that they might never have had such as travelling on a train and visiting new parts of Ontario. “The opportunity to travel to a provincial/national/international sports tournament is amazing,”says Mr. Newstead. “Students have been able to network with other students throughout the province and country and meet other students beyond North America.”

Image of Paige Peterson and Ila Crogie from the LCVI Special Olympics track teamMr. Newstead hopes to build on this success and begin a Unified Sport and Social Club next year at NDSS. This club would allow School to Community athletes to compete along with their mainstream peers while participating in various sports within the school.

LCVI School to Community Teacher Tiiu Vail says all athletes played with heart and truly embodied the spirit of the Special Olympics oath: “Let me win, but if I cannot win, let me be brave in the attempt.”

Congratulations to the following GREC athletes and coaches:

Track and field: Nick Anderson and Devin Cooney
Coaches: Jamie McCullough and Tammy Steele

Image of LCVI Special Olympics floor hockey team

Congratulations to the following LCVI athletes and coaches:

Basketball: Dallas Convery, Conner Morgan, Connor Wright, Brandon Duscharme and Robbie Steeves
Track and field: Ila Crogie, Michael Wilson and Paige 
Floor hockey: Ben Byrd, Jonathon Summers, Imad Nhari, Chris Burnett, Shawn Sinclair, Nic Sinclair and Sabbir Ahmed

Coaches and volunteers: Sharon Amsden, Sal Cutrona, Jordan DeRooy, Beth Lyons, Leila Nhari, Ashley Shields and Tiiu Vail

Image of NDSS Special Olympics soccer team

Congratulations to the following NDSS athletes and coaches:

Soccer: Jordan Bartraw, Blaine Carscallen, Riley Bird-Lyman, Kirsty Wood, Jacob Hutchings, Paige Fox, Donovan Near, Stacey Masson, Sarah Mills
Basketball: Chris French, Zach Powell, Andrew Spilek, Liz Masson, Melissa Goodwin
Bocce: Austin Foster, Carlee Maxwell, Ray McNamee, Marika Vanderkooy
Coaches: Adele Atkinson, BJ MacGregor, Mike Newstead, Kelly VanHoek, Kevin Walker and Nancy Yanaky


The Limestone District School Board is situated on traditional territories of the Anishinaabe & Haudenosaunee.