The student news site of Woodbridge High School

Golden Arrow

The student news site of Woodbridge High School

Golden Arrow

The student news site of Woodbridge High School

Golden Arrow

Warrior Unified Promotes Accessibility and Inclusivity in Sporting Activities on Campus

Students in the Extensive Support Needs (ESN) program at Woodbridge High participate in the Warrior Unified club, making engagement in team sports more accessible for all students
Ashlynn Do
Unified Sports members and volunteers gather together at a club meeting.

Warrior Unified encourages students in the ESN program at Woodbridge High to participate in sports activities during bi-weekly meetings on Wednesdays, fostering greater inclusivity in sports on campus. 

Woodbridge High is the first school in the Irvine Unified School District to be determined a Unified Champion school by the Special Olympics. 

According to Special Olympics, “Special Olympics Unified Champion Schools is a program for schools Pre-K through university that intentionally promotes meaningful social inclusion by bringing together students with and without intellectual disabilities to create accepting school environments, utilizing three interconnected components: Special Olympics Unified Sports, inclusive youth leadership and whole school engagement.”

The Warrior Unified club started in 2019 and has cultivated a supportive environment that motivates students to lead school engagement in sports activities for people of all abilities. 

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Due to Woodbridge High’s dedication to making sports more accessible for students of all abilities, our school plays a prominent role in connecting with other schools to take the lead in making inclusivity in sports programs more widespread.

During Warrior Unified meetings, ESN students and general education students participate in activities like seated volleyball, team cornhole and basketball. Additionally, Warrior Unified partakes in an annual exhibition game with the Unified Sports team at Portola High. They compete during halftime or in between games.

Educational specialist and co-head of Warrior Unified Nicholas Card said that exhibition games are a great opportunity for students in Warrior Unified to see the immense amount of support they get for their hard work. 

The Warrior Unified co-presidents and board actively work to improve the activities that students in the ESN program can participate in. Warrior Unified is committed to providing unique, valuable sports experiences to ESN students. 

Educational specialist and co-head of Warrior Unified James Hickson said the leadership in Warrior Unified plans and creates engaging clinics for students to enjoy. 

Sophomore and participant in Warrior Unified Yuna Taing explains how the club has helped her by giving her time to socialize with peers and get to know them. Taing says her favorite part about being in the club is talking with her friends. 

Junior and Warrior Unified participant Justin Esquivel is passionate about improving his skills in sports and enjoys the activities that Warrior Unified organizes. 

“It’s fun to play sports. I play a lot of sports. I play basketball, soccer, and baseball,” Esquivel said.

Warrior Unified highlights the opportunities Woodbridge High provides for all students to participate in sports activities on campus and reflects the ongoing commitment to inclusivity and ability awareness on campus.

Card said some goals Warrior Unified has for this year are to have another exhibition basketball game and compete in more games near Abilities Awareness Week in April. They also plan to connect with Woodbridge High alumni who are attending the Irvine Adult Transition Program to have an exhibition game. 

The inclusivity and cooperation that Warrior Unified promotes are extremely valuable to the Woodbridge High community, helping to intensify the athletic potential of students in the ESN program. Students interested in supporting the Warrior Unified Club can join the club’s Remind: @unifiedwb.

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About the Contributors
Danbi Lee
Danbi Lee, Features A Editor
Hi! My name is Danbi, and I'm the Features A Editor at the Golden Arrow. I'm a junior, and this is my second year in Advanced Journalism. I can't wait to interview people around campus and hear about students' various experiences. One of my goals this year is to get to know the Golden Arrow staff better. I hope to continue to write stories that help represent the different groups we have on campus!
Ashlynn Do
Ashlynn Do, Writer/Photographer
Hi Warriors! My name is Ashlynn Do and I'll be joining the Golden Arrow this year as a staff writer. I'm looking forward to representing different voices on campus and helping people and groups share their stories. I can't wait to work with the rest of the Golden Arrow staff to bring you lots of great stories this year!