2014 Area Conference - Special Olympics Texas

Area Conference
1 / Special Olympics Texas
Hello Coaches!
We want to thank you for all you do for the athletes and families of Special Olympics Texas.
This PowerPoint contains the updates you will find in the 2014 SOTX Information Guide (SIG).
Certified coaches are responsible for these updates as well as the balance of the important
information in the SIG. Contact your area office or the chapter office if you have questions about
information contained in the 2014 SOTX Sports Information Guide.
In order to receive credit for attending the 2014 Coaches Recertification:
You will need to review the PowerPoint and the Terms of Agreement
Check YES next to each statement
Enter your contact information and hit SUBMIT. (The form will only SUBMIT if you check YES
next to each statement, enter your contact information and hit SUBMIT)
2 / Special Olympics Texas
Additional steps required to maintain your coach certification:
• Every three years, the coach must complete Protective Behaviors
• Submit a new Class A Volunteer Application. (Contact your Area office to
check on your Class A status)
The online 2014 Coaches Recertification will only be available
from December 2 – February 28.
Thank you for all you do!
Molly Kuchar
Director of Program Training
Special Olympics Texas
[email protected]
3 / Special Olympics Texas
2014 Chapter Competition Dates
• January 30 – February 2 Winter Games (Austin)
• May 16 – 18 Equestrian Summer Games (Bryan)
• May 22 – 25 Summer Games (Arlington)
• TBD Sailing and Kayaking (Houston)
• October 16 - 18 Fall Classic (College Station)
• December 5 – 6 Flag Football (San Marcos)
4 / Special Olympics Texas
Athlete Eligibility
5 / Special Olympics Texas
Online Training now available for Coach certification!
• Alternative training option for SOTX Coach certification
• Access online course in the convenience of own home and schedule
• SOTX is not responsible for course expense
Coaching Special Olympics Athletes
This is a three hour course offered through American Sports Education Program for $16.95.
Coaching Basketball, Baseball, Golf, Soccer, Softball, Volleyball, Track & Field
This is a three hour course offered through the National Federation of State High School Associations for $50.00.
Coaching Unified Sports
This 90-minute course is FREE offered through National Federation of State High School Associations.
Principles of Coaching for Special Olympics http://continuinged.wvu.edu
This 9-hour course is offered through West Virginia Continuing Education for $35.00.
Coaching Youth Basketball, Volleyball, Softball, Soccer and Tennis
These 3-hour courses are offered through American Sports Education Program for $19.95 each.
See complete course description for each online course located in the Sports Information Guide in Section F-3.
7 / Special Olympics Texas
Online Trainings
Prerequisites before completing online courses if new to SOTX:
Complete the Special Olympics General Orientation
Complete the Special Olympics Protective Behaviors training
Complete Class A Volunteer Form
SIG Instructional Course (taken through local SOTX office)
Online Certification Procedures:
Once a course is complete, the user will receive an online course certificate.
Please forward a copy of the online course certificate to Director of Program
Training, [email protected] A follow-up letter will be sent to recognize
your course accomplishments as a new or returning coach for SOTX.
If seeking new coach certification, a practicum form will be sent to continue the
certification process. A ten hour practicum is mandated to capture at least 10
hours of practical experience with intellectually disabled athletes. After
completion of ten hours, submit your practicum form to your area office.
A picture paints a thousand words
8 / Special Olympics Texas
Project Unify – Meet in the Middle
Project Unify is a national grant-funded project designed to empower
students with and without intellectual disabilities to work together as agents
of change – fostering respect, dignity, and advocacy for people with
intellectual disabilities by utilizing the programs and initiatives of Special
Project UNIFY has three components:
1. Youth Leadership
2. Unified Sports
3. Whole School Involvement
For more information on Project Unify – Meet in the Middle, contact
[email protected]
10 / Special Olympics Texas
Unified Programs
Due to the recent change in Unified Sports, Unified Sports will now be known as
“Unified Programs”.
SOTX encourages all Coaches certified in Unified Sports to attend a Unified Program
Training to ensure they are working from the most updated information.
Unified Program Trainings are offered through face to face trainings and also online for
FREE by the National Federation of State High School Associations, Coaching
Unified Sports www.nfhslearn.com.
11 / Special Olympics Texas
Unified Programs continued
Unified Programs has three components:
1. Unified Recreation – recreational sport-related enrichment opportunities for promoting social inclusion and
increasing sports skills and knowledge, which takes place in schools, the community and private or public
Example Activities: intramurals, open gym, camps, club activities – Meet in the Middle & Young Athletes
2. Unified Player Development – the level in which players of higher ability assist teammates in developing sports
skills and tactics, and in successfully participating in a team environment.
Example Activities: intramurals, open gym, camps, club activities – Meet in the Middle & Local Competitions
3. Unified Sports – program that combines Special Olympics athletes and athletes without intellectual disabilities
(partners) on sports teams for training and competition.
Example Activities: League, Club Activities – Meet in the Middle (coaches need to be certified) & Area/State
See the Unified Program chart in SIG section K-1 for further divisioning components.
SOTX Unified modifications are now included with the sport specific information found in the Summer Games,
Fall Classic and Winter Games SIG sections.
12 / Special Olympics Texas
Chapter SMT
2014 Meeting Schedule
Thursday, February 20th, 2014 - Conference Call
Thursday, June 12th, 2014 - Conference Call
Friday, September 5th, 2014 - Chapter Office – Austin
Thursday, November 6th, 2014 - Conference Call
13 / Special Olympics Texas
Rules & Competition
Rabbit Rule
Special Olympics Texas strives to provide each athlete with the opportunity
to excel and reach their personal best. Through conversation and
education, coaches, families and athletes will understand the Rabbit Rule
and the benefits it provides over the alternative Honest Effort Rule.
For the purpose of equalizing competition and protecting against
inaccurate entry scores or sandbagging in preliminaries, SOTX utilizes the
Rabbit Rule for Athletics, Aquatics, Bowling and Cycling.
14 / Special Olympics Texas
Rabbit Rule Continued
In effort to avoid an athlete from “rabbiting”, it is suggested during the 8-12 week training
session that coaches track the progress of their athletes at every training.
In addition to team practices, part of the qualifying process involves athletes participating
in two scrimmages and a local competition. Participating in these events should give the
coaches an idea of how their athletes react in a competition environment.
Because all athletes have the opportunity to improve with proper training, Coaches can
adjust entry scores for their athletes. Coaches submit entries; SOTX enters data and
sends reports to the coaches asking them to submit corrections. The corrections are
submitted; update our system and heat (or division).
Team Registration is the last opportunity for Coaches to update an athlete’s entry score.
Each year it is our expectation for all coaches to educate athletes, parents and families
on the Rabbit Rule. As a Coach, we ask you to take the responsibility to explain the
Rabbit Rule among your team to avoid any misunderstanding or discrepancies at
15 / Special Olympics Texas
2014 National Games
Hosted in Princeton, New Jersey
June 14th – 21st 2014
SOTX is sending 139 athletes to compete at the National Level
16 / Special Olympics Texas
Team Sport Substitutions
Every athlete deserves the best and most positive experience possible.
When developing a team, consider the minimum and maximum roster
numbers. Too few substitutes can impact your team’s experience and
impact other teams in your division.
Do you have:
• Enough team members to have an effective scrimmage, game-like
situation during practice?
• Enough players to carry even with unexpected injuries or absence?
• Enough members to travel for competitions?
• Enough members to substitute for any fatigued teammates?
• Enough members and substitutes to compete without negatively
impacting competition?
17 / Special Olympics Texas
Summer Games
Team Competition
• Half-court: 3-on-3 competition (8 foot and 10
foot goal divisions). A minimum of nine teams
must be registered to hold a 3-on-3 competition
at Chapter Games.
19 / Special Olympics Texas
• New Competition levels used in 2014 to better guide transition from
individual skills to traditional matchplay.
• The 2014 Rating Sheet lists the Suggested Competition Level based on
the athlete’s final rating.
• The 2014 Suggest Competition Levels provides an overview of the five
levels and their corresponding Court Dimensions, Ball Color and Final
• The Suggested Competition Levels and New Rating Form will be used for
Area and Chapter competitions.
20 / Special Olympics Texas
Tennis Event Codes
TN Individual Skills (Level 1 Red)
TN Singles (Level 2 Red, Level 3 Orange, Level 4 Green, Level 5 Yellow)
TN Doubles (Level 2 Red, Level 3 Orange, Level 4 Green, Level 5 Yellow)
TN Unified Sports Doubles (Level 2 Red, Level 3 Orange, Level 4 Green, Level 5
21 / Special Olympics Texas
22 / Special Olympics Program Name
Fall Classic
Kayaking is now a Fall Sport
Due to safety risk, athletes are required to wear
helmets during all Area and Chapter events.
24 / Special Olympics Texas
Two new divisions have been added to Bocce Competitions:
Half-Court Traditional Doubles
Can be hosted at Area, Regional and Chapter competitions.
Half-Court Unified Doubles
Can only be hosted at local competitions because Unified Doubles falls under the Unified
Sports Player Development Model.
Bocce Event Codes
BC Half-Court Doubles…BCHALFD
BC Unified Sports (Half-Court) Doubles…BCHALFU
Beginning in 2014 teams are required to provide caddies for their Level
4 and 5 athletes who are competing at Area, Regional and Chapter
The caddies will need to be registered Class A Volunteers with Special
Olympics Texas and included on the Athlete Entry Form with the role
code “Caddie”.
The SOI Official Sports Rules for golf now list the maximum entry
averages for each level of competition.
Due to the natural level of difficulty inherent in the sport and the amount
of practice time it takes one to lower their average SOTX will consider
2014 as a transition year.
SOTX will follow SOI maximum entry averages beginning in 2015.
Level 2: average of 75 or lower
Level 3: average of 120 or lower (18 holes)
Level 4: average of 70 or lower
Level 5: average of 120 or lower
26 / Special Olympics Texas
2014 - Golf Transition Year
Because 2014 is considered a transition year, it is
recommended for team/individual entry scores not exceed
SOI’s maximum entry average at Area, Regional and
Chapter competitions.
The team/individual athlete must include with entries
6 scorecards in the level in which they wish to compete.
The Fall Classic Golf Organizing Committee will document
scores for the 2014 Fall Classic.
If a team/individual scores are above the recommended
maximum scores, the HOD and head coach will be notified
that the team/individual cannot participate in that Level at
the 2015 Fall Classic.
27 / Special Olympics Texas
Softball - Unified Sports
Shorthand Rule: Teams should have five Special Olympics athletes and five partners on
the field at all times. The SOI rules state that if a team plays shorthanded with either
three in the infield or outfield, at least two of the three must be athletes and at least one
of the three must be a partner. Also, a team may play with an uneven number of athletes
and partners as long as there are more athletes.
When a partner is walked: Any walk to a partner, intentional or otherwise, will result in a
two base award. The next batter, an athlete, will bat. The exception is with two outs, the
athlete batter has the option to walk or bat.
Home Run Rule: A limit of over-the-fence home runs will be used in all Unified divisions.
The following limitations are per team per game: Two (2). Both athlete and partner home
runs count toward the Unified limit.
Additional information on Unified Sports can be found in Section K in the SIG.
28 / Special Olympics Texas
The formerly known, “State Family Committee Activities”
is now known as, “Family Support Network”
Available at both Area and Chapter Levels
29 / Special Olympics Texas
Public Relations / Communications
During Chapter Games (Winter, Summer, Fall Classic), we will use text
messaging to notify participants of any weather alerts, schedule changes or
other important information. To receive these alerts, please text the appropriate
word to 888777:
Winter Games: wintergames
Summer Games: sotxsummer
Fall Classic:
Once you have signed up for each Games, you will remain signed up unless
you remove yourself from the group by texting STOP to 888777.
30 / Special Olympics Texas
Next Steps:
Return to the Area Conference homepage
Review the Terms of Agreement
Enter your contact information
Select YES under each statement
The 2014 SOTX Information Guide (SIG) can be accessed
from http://www.sotx.org.
Beginning in 2014, SOTX will no longer print a hardcopy.
Contact your area office or the chapter office if you have
questions about information contained in the 2014 SOTX
Information Guide.
31 / Special Olympics Texas
Thank you for your time.
Good luck in 2014!
32 / Special Olympics Program Name
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