On Wednesday, January 31, Esperanza High School hosted El Dorado, Valencia, and Yorba Linda high schools for a Unified Sports Basketball Tournament. Special education students and general education partners from all four schools participated in two friendly and spirited intramural games. A huge crowd of fans from all schools and the district attended to show support.
Athletes warmed up as the gym filled up with spectators. Before the games, a moment of silence was held to honor former Esperanza student, Staisha, who passed away in 2023. The first game then kicked off with El Dorado versus Yorba Linda and the Golden Hawks and Mustangs did not disappoint! The teams were neck and neck scoring points and having fun along the way. The same was true for the next game, Esperanza versus Valencia. When an athlete would score, the gym would erupt in cheers and celebration among students, staff, and the families of the athletes.
Several years ago, Unified Sports started at Esperanza as a club led by students focused on inclusion and building friendships through sports and activities. In the past, EHS has hosted several Unified Sports events where students with and without disabilities joined together to train and compete. The other three high schools have since started teams.
Fast forward to today and the Esperanza Aztecs have expanded their program by offering courses in Unified Physical Education. Similar to the club, this PE class is a fully inclusive program that combines students in a non-competitive learning environment.
Unified PE allows all students to participate in developmentally appropriate activities including lifetime activities, physical fitness, and sports. Students work together to increase competence and confidence in a variety of physical activities. Through ongoing leadership opportunities, members of this course are empowered to help create a more inclusive and accepting school environment for all students.
Way go to, PYLUSD Unified Sports! Special thanks to Esperanza’s administrative team, staff, and students for hosting such an exciting event for the PYLUSD community.