How Forest Hills Eastern High School Stood Out

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Forest Hills Eastern High School was selected in 2017 as the first school in Michigan to be a Special Olympics Unified Champion Schools National Banner program.

"It's overwhelming," said Chris Thomas, a Forest Hills Eastern teacher. "To be the first one to be recognized is really special."

A Special Olympics Unified Champion School exhibits a commitment to an inclusive school climate that promotes a sense of collaboration, engagement and respect for all members of the student body and staff. Standards for determining a National Banner Unified Champion School are based upon the three over-arching components that include Special Olympics Unified Sports where students with and without intellectual disabilities practice and compete together, Inclusive Youth Leadership and Whole-School Engagements.

"I couldn't do it without the students,” said Chris Thomas. "We're getting recognized as a Unified Champion School because we have so many students who come out and help."