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SIG: Special Olympics Texas Information Guide

The Special Olympics Texas Information Guide (SIG) contains important information about the policies, sports rules, fundraising guidelines, financial requirements and communications strategies governing Special Olympics Texas. The SIG is updated each year, and all coaches and heads of delegations are required to review and understand the rules. Changes are discussed each year during the “Annual Conference” held online or in person in January and February.

Summary of Changes and Updates

New or updated information will be shown in blue italic within each section of the SIG.

Below is a summary of all changes/updates since 2016:

Section C - Volunteer  

  • Volunteer Opportunities
    • Project UNIFY is now known as Unified Champion Schools.
  • Volunteer Eligibility
    • Class B Volunteers 7 years old and younger – are not given volunteer assignments, but are welcomed and encouraged to be cheerleaders or spectators at competitions, accompanied by a parent/guardian. They must remain outside the immediate competition area.
  • 2016 award winners:
    • Volunteer of the Year – Renae Carswell, Lewisville
    • Male Athlete of the Year: 15-21 – Brendan West, Pasadena
    • Male Athlete of the Year: 22+ - Kyle Eddlemon, Missouri City
    • Female Athlete of the Year: 15-21 – Kylie Tyson, Canyon
    • Female Athlete of the Year: 22+ - Julia Kilgore, Wichita Falls
    • Coach of the Year – Clara Edwards, Monahans
    • Trainer of the Year – Laurie Martin, St. Jo
    • Outstanding Service from a Business/Corporation – FC Dallas, Frisco
    • Family of the Year – Mehnert Family, Carrollton
    • Outstanding Volunteer for Fund Raising – Jason James, Bryan
    • Outstanding Service for Outreach – Gwenda Taggart, San Antonio
    • Outstanding Service from a Community Leader – Greg Simmons, San Antonio
    • Outstanding Service from a Civic or Service Organization – Houston Bar Association, Special Olympics Committee, Houston
    • Unified Sports Partner of the Year – Jim Domer, Lewisville

Section D – Establishing a Local Program

    • Form W-9 is required by the Internal Revenue Service for each new vendor. SOTX must have the vendor’s current W-9 on file before payment is processed. All W-9s must be updated annually. Please attach a W-9 to each check request from a vendor not in SOTX system.

Section E – Coaches Training and Certification

  • Head of Delegation Requirements:
    • Must attend the Area Conference annually
    • Must be responsible for informing all Coaches and Athletes of Area conference material.
  • Coach Certification Maintenance
    • Receive Area Conference changes from HOD
    • Coaches are no longer mandated to attend the Area Conference, only encouraged to overview and stay updated on changes.
    • The Area Conference will remain online throughout the year for Coaches to stay updated on rule changes, policies and procedures, calendar of events, etc.,
    • The coach must remain active in the Special Olympics program in the specific sport(s). An absence of more than 12 months will result in a lapse of certification and require the coach to attend another training school.
    • The coach must attend all required coaches meetings for the sport(s) in which they are active.
    • Every three years the coach must complete the Protective Behaviors, Concussion in Sports Training and submit a new Class A Volunteer Application.
    • Every four years the coach must complete Criminal Background Check.

Section F – Training

  • Coach Education System:
    • Contact the Director of Program Training to assess personal sport experience and knowledge and option to receive Level 1 Coach certification through the completion of the online Coaching Special Olympics Athletes course. The Director of Program training can be contacted by email, dir_progtrg.chp@sotx.org or phone 512/491/2940.
    • Coaching Special Olympics Athletes online training course -http://www.asep.com/asep_content/org/SONA.cfm 
  • Online Concussion in Sports Training required for all new and returning Coaches.
  • Forward completion certificate to Area office.
  • All Coaches must take Concussion in Sports Training once every 3 years in congruence with Class A Volunteer application.

Section G - General Policies

  • People ages 2 through 7 are considered Athletes in training and can participate in Young Athletes.
  • Special Olympics must offer full participation at the area level for every athlete regardless of his/her economic circumstances.

Section H – Risk Management

  • To the fullest extent permitted by law, SOTX prohibits concealed handguns and open carry of handguns, and all weapons (other types of guns, knives, etc.) at all SOTX practices, competitions offices, events, and functions.

Section I – Health & Safety

  • Winter Weather Policy
    • Athletes are more susceptible to injuries during cold weather, particularly from pulled or torn muscles. Players should be encouraged to wear appropriate clothing to aid body heat retention yet afford adequate movement without creating a safety hazard. As a general rule, training programs will be cancelled if the projected temperate (including wind chill) at the start of training is projected to be below 25 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Hot Weather Policy
    • The risk of heat related illness from vigorous sports increases with the temperature. The body generates heat which cannot be dissipated readily when the ambient temperature exceeds 85 degrees F, depending upon the humidity. Hot weather is considered at any point where the Heat Index reaches or exceeds 90. As a general rule, training programs should be reviewed if the heat index at the start of training is projected to be above 95 degrees Fahrenheit. Coaches should exercise caution and provide additional water breaks.
  • Lightning and Thunder Policy
    • If inclement weather is forecast, an individual should be designated to monitor the weather forecasted developments during competition. If the facility being used for competition has a lightning detection system and a facilities policy in place that is more stringent than listed below, the facilities policy will supersede the Special Olympics Texas policy. 
    • If lightning is detected within 8 miles of the practice or competition facility, all coaches, players, referees and spectators are to withdraw from the field and seek proper shelter. No place outside is safe near thunderstorms. The best shelter is a large, fully enclosed, substantially constructed building. A vehicle with a solid metal roof and metal sides is a reasonable second choice.
    • 30 Minutes Rule – Wait at least 30 minutes after the last sound of thunder or the last lightning flash before giving the “all clear” signal and resuming normal activity. If thunder is heard or lightning is seen again within that 30-minute time frame, the event will continue to be postponed or officials may deem to cancel the event.
    • Lightning research has confirmed that consecutive lighting strikes can occur as much as six miles apart. People often do not perceive lightning to be close if it is two miles or more away, but the risk of the next strike being at your location may actually be very high. Many lightening casualties occur in the beginning as a thunderstorm approaches because people ignore these precursors. When thunderstorms are in the area but not overhead, the lightning threat can exist even if it is sunny at your location. 

Section J – Outreach Program

  • Project UNIFY – Meet in the Middle is now known as Unified Champion Schools.
  • Young Athletes Program is now known as, Young Athletes.
  • Partner Clubs is now known as Unified Clubs.

Section L - Chapter SMT

2017 Meeting Schedule

  • Thursday, March 2, 2017 at 5:30pm (call)
  • Thursday, June 15, 2017 at 5:30pm (call)
  • Friday, September 8, 2017 at 2:00pm (call/in-person)
  • Thursday, November 16, 2017 at 5:30pm (call)

New forms available for sport rules change requests. 

  • Sports Rules Change Request Form
  • Evaluation of Sports Rules Change Request Form

Section M - Rules and Competition

  • Awards Presentation / Venue Guidelines  
    • SOTX awarding will skip places on ties at every level of competition.
  • Awarding Rabbits
    • If an athlete outperforms everyone else in their age group and gender within a single event, they will automatically be awarded a 1st place, regardless if they rabbited or not.
    • If an athlete rabbits, they will be awarded using their final score and placed within the closest heat based on that final score.
    • If an entire heat rabbits, all athletes will stay in that original heat and be awarded based on their final scores within that heat.

Section N - Registration

  • Registration – Registration and Entry Fee Policy
    • A Scratches Deadline has been established for each Chapter Games. Scratches of Athletes and/or Unified Partners will incur a $15.00 administration fee per participant that scratches if submitted after the Scratches Deadline. Scratches Deadlines can be found on each Chapter Games Entries Processing Schedule. The Entries Processing Schedule is listed at www.sotx.org/competitions on each Chapter Games competition page. Scratches must be submitted by the scratch deadline to the Director of Games Management in order to avoid the administration fee.
  • Delegation Entry Form Instructions
    • For entry at all levels, Unified Partners (regardless of age) must be included on the Delegation Personnel Form and the Athlete Entry Form.
  • Added to Event Codes: 
    • BB Speed Dribble Dribble…. BBSPDR
  • Consult your Area Office for your area chapter deadline
    • Chapter Games Schedule
      • February 2-5, 2017: Winter Games (Austin)
      • May 19-21 2017: Equestrian Summer Games (Bryan)
      • May 25-28, 2017: Summer Games (Arlington)
      • Sailing and Kayaking: October 2017 (Dallas)
      • October 12-14, 2017: Fall Classic AQ, SB, BC (Bryan-College Station)
      • October 19-21, 2017: Fall Classic GF (Bryan-College Station)
      • December 1-2, 2017: Flag Football (San Antonio)

Section P - Summer Games

  • Athletics – Track Events Information
    • In Wheelchair Races, competition management has the option to space athletes out, using more than one lane.
  • Basketball – Team Competition
    • SOTX recommends, for lower level basketball teams, a minimum number of 7 participants on a roster.
  • Basketball – Individual Skills Contest
    • Basketball Skills will consist of three events: Target Pass, 10M Dribble and Spot Shot.  Speed Dribble may be substituted for 10M Dribble.  Entrants who want to substitute Speed Dribble for the 10M Dribble must register to participate in Basketball Skills and the Speed Dribble (event code: BBSPDR).
    • The diagram for the Speed Dribble widened from 1.5m to 2m.
  • Gymnastics – Rhythmic
    • Rules and routines used at all levels of SOTX Rhythmic Gymnastics events will be the SOI Rules dated 2016-2023.
    • Rule Change – Male Gymnasts are no longer able to compete in white socks.
      • Male gymnasts shall wear tank tops (leotards) and long white gymnastic pants, or T-shirts that are tucked in and gymnastics shorts. For either set of attire, the gymnast may compete in gymnastic slippers or bare feet.
  • Chapter Summer Games – Soccer (new section)
    • In 2017, team soccer events (Traditional & Unified) at the Chapter Games level will be offered as an indoor soccer event only.  This will be the second year that SOTX will be offering indoor soccer at Summer Games, and this is a trial to see if indoor soccer should become the permanent and only soccer option offered at the Chapter level.  The Chapter SMT will reevaluate for the 2018 season after collecting survey results and feedback following the 2017 event.
  • Soccer – New Rule
    • Athletes and Unified Partners younger than 11 years old shall not engage in heading, either in practices or in games.

Section Q - Fall Classic

  • 2017 Chapter Games Sport Maximums
    • Aquatics – 500 participants
      • The aquatics competition at Chapter Games will have a maximum quota of 500 entrants. Quota will be distributed to each area for dispersal before entry deadlines.  Quota will be based on an area’s net participation in aquatics against the statewide total of area level net participants in aquatics.
  • Golf – Reminders
    • Golf maximum averages for Chapter Games will be enforced. Competition management can use area results to determine placement in golf levels at Chapter. 
    • If a substitution is required in Level 2 and Level 3, the alternate participant must have been listed on the original entries for that competition as an alternate.
  • Flag Football – Unified Sports Flag Football
    • The National Football League has partnered with SOTX to support the growth of Unified Flag Football Teams.  Teams can apply for grants through the NFL to help with uniform and equipment cost.  
  • Kayaking – Rule Changes
  • Softball – Unified Sports Softball Rule Clarification
    • 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. A team may play with an uneven number of athletes and partners as long as there are more athletes.
    • Teams must play shorthanded if they cannot field 5 unified partners and must always field 5 athletes.  An inability to follow these rules, due to injury or removal of a player including ejection by the umpire, will result in forfeiture.

Section T – Families 

  • Department of Aging and Disability Services will now be known as Health and Human Services. 
  • Coalition of Health Services has been added to the list of supportive organizations for family members.
  • Want to receive important SOTX information that affects your athlete and family? Sign up to receive texts (no more than 2-3 a month) from SOTX. Standard text & data rates may apply. Text FAMILY to 888777.

Section U – Public Relations/Communications

  • Social Media Guidelines
    • Follow us on Snapchat at SO.texas
    • Follow us on Facebook Live
  • Visual Identity
    • All previous versions of the logos including those with the teal color were to be completely phased out by the end of 2015.

Section V - Names and Addresses

  • New Area 12 Training Director: Rena Gibson

List of Forms

Note: All forms created in Microsoft Word use the official Special Olympics Inc. font Ubuntu. If you do not have Ubuntu loaded on your computer, forms may be distorted. You may download Ubuntu for free at this website: http://font.ubuntu.com/.

Section B - Athlete Eligibility

Section C - Volunteer Eligibility

Section D - Establishing a Local Program

Section E - Coaching

Section F - Training

Section G - Policies

Section H - Risk Management

Section I - Health & Safety

Section J - Outreach

Section K - Unified Sports

Section L - Chapter SMT

Section M - Rules & Competition

Section N - Registration

Section P - Summer Games

Section Q - Fall Classic

Section R - Winter Games

Section S - Development

Section T - Families

Section U - PR/Communications



Section B:
Athlete Eligibility

According to the World Health Organization, intellectual disability is a condition of arrested or incomplete development of the mind characterized by impairment of skills and overall intelligence in areas such as cognition, language, and motor and social abilities. Intellectual disability can occur with or without any other physical or mental disorders. Although reduced level of intellectual functioning is the characteristic feature of this disorder, the diagnosis is made only if it is associated with a diminished ability to adapt to the daily demands of the normal social environment. (Visit www.who.int for more information.)

Special Olympics’ range of services, from the Motor Activities Training Program to Unified Sports®, addresses the needs of individuals at their current functional level. Special Olympics is a valuable support system that recognizes differences and celebrates individual accomplishments.

Eligibility for Participation

Special Olympics was created and developed to give individuals with intellectual disabilities the opportunity to train and compete in sports activities. No person shall, on the grounds of gender, race, religion, color or national origin, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, and/or be otherwise subjected to discrimination under any program or activity of Special Olympics.

Athletes must compete in the area program and events within the geographical boundaries where they live. Coaches may petition their area program staff if they would like to compete in events outside their area boundaries. Athletes may not substitute their area’s competition for another. Competing in another area’s event is an option only to add additional competition opportunities. The area program staff will assist coaches in locating the next closest competition. An athlete must compete at the area level before advancing in the same sport to the chapter level.

Athletes must play to the best of their abilities, to provide for fair and equitable competition, and must adhere to sportsmanlike conduct.

Identification of Special Olympics Eligibility

The person is 2* years of age or older and…

*Athlete's age

  • 2-7 may participate in Young Athletes and as Athletes in Training
  • 8+ may train and compete in Local and Area competitions
  • 12+ may train and compete in Local, Area, and Chapter competitions

Definition of Eligibility

Eligibility is limited to people who have closely related developmental disabilities such as those who have functional limitations, both in general learning and in adaptive skills such as recreation, work, independent living, self-direction or self-care. When the term “intellectual disabilities” or other similar descriptor is not used to identify the person in a local area, eligibility should be determined by whether or not the person has functional limitations in both general learning and adaptive skills. “Developmental disability” is the term most often used to describe people with both limitations. Other terms that may be used synonymously with developmental disability are developmental handicap, developmental delay or severe disabilities.

General learning limitations refers to substantial deficits in conceptual, practical and social intelligence that will result in performance problems in academic learning and/or general life functioning. Learning limitations may be assessed by standardized tests (e.g., intelligence or achievement tests) or through criterion-referenced measures (e.g., teacher/parent observations or actual performance samples).

Adaptive skill limitations refers to ongoing performance deficits in skill areas considered essential to successful life functioning. These adaptive skill areas include: communication, self-care, home-living, social skills, community use, self-direction, health and safety, functional academics, recreation/leisure and work. Adaptive skills limitations may be measured by standardized tests (e.g., adaptive behavior scales or checklists) or through criterion-referenced measures (e.g., teacher/parent observations or actual performance samples).

People with functional limitations based solely on a physical, behavioral, emotional, specific learning disability or sensory disability are not eligible.

Some flexibility is left to accredited programs and subprograms for determining, in exceptional circumstances, the individual eligibility of a participant because of the variety of situations, needs and definitions that exist in the many localities where Special Olympics has been and will be instituted. The accredited program must inform Special Olympics, Inc. (SOI), in writing and with appropriate evidence, of these potential exceptions, and the program’s determination of eligibility is subject to SOI’s approval. Coaches should contact the Vice President of Field Services at the chapter office for more information.

People who have multiple disabilities may participate in Special Olympics provided they meet the eligibility requirements.

Atlantoaxial Instability (AAI)

Participation by Individuals with Down Syndrome

An athlete with Down Syndrome will no longer be required to automatically undergo an x-ray examination as a requirement for participation. The new medical form procedures include an assessment of symptoms of adverse neurological effect that replaces the x-ray examination requirement.

If an athlete was x-rayed at the time of registration and was found to have an AAI condition, he or she may follow the new rule and be examined for symptoms of adverse neurological effects as part of a “renewal” medical examination. If the athlete does not have these symptoms, then he or she may be cleared for participation by a Licensed Medical Professional.

If the athlete does have symptoms, then he or she may only participate if the athlete receives a thorough neurological evaluation from a physician qualified to state that the cause of those symptoms will not result in additional risk of neurological injury due to sports participation and certifies that the athlete may participate. The athlete of the parent or guardian of a minor athlete must sign an informed consent document that acknowledges they have been informed of the findings and determinations of the physician.

Until all athletes have been screened using the new neurological method, the neurological status of athletes that have only been screened by x-ray is unknown. Precautions will still need to be taken for these athletes.

Consent/Participant Release Form

The Athlete medical previously included Consent/Participant Release documentation. The Consent had to be signed each time the medical was turned in by a parent/guardian, or by the athlete if they were 18 and they were their own guardian.

The new process for the Consent/Participant Release is that the documentation has been pulled from the current medical and a stand-alone form has been created. This document only has to be signed once upon the athlete's initial registration with Special Olympics Texas, unless guardianship changes and the the Release must be signed again by the new guardian. Athletes can still sign as their own guardian if they are 18 and represent themselves.

Athletes who are currently competing will not have to have the Release resigned but will be considered compliant based on the current release that is on file.

Athlete Enrollment/Medical Instructions

In 2015, Special Olympics, Inc. rolled out a new medical which will lead to a better quality pre-participation physical, and a greater ability for Special Olympics to assess the hearth status of our athletes as a whole.

To enroll to become an athlete, complete an Athlete Enrollment/Medical Release Form.

Athletes, parents and or caregivers only will complete the first three pages of the form. Physicians will complete the fourth page during the physical examination. The fifth page will only be used if a referral is necessary. For the majority of athletes, the completed form will be only the first four pages. The fifth page is only for the limited number of people not initially cleared to participate.

A form is considered complete if the appropriate medical practitioner signs the medical form and indicates that the athlete is cleared for participation, and the form reflects all the necessary signatures. Medical professionals approved to sign the form are as follows: Licensed Physician (MD), Physician Assistant licensed by the State Board of Physicians Assistant Examiners, or a Registered Nurse recognized as an advanced practice nurse by the Board of Nurse Examiners.

The purpose of the new medical form is to provide a clear and accurate health history. If there are not changes to the athlete’s medical history, only page three and/or four are required to be updated. However, if there have been changes to the athletes’ health, then a full medical form will need to be completed and signed by registrants.

Every athlete will need a doctor to review their medical status and sign page 4 every 3 years. Check “Renewal” at the top of the medical if the athlete medical is expiring and an update is being submitted. A doctor’s signature is required. Check “Update” if the medical has not expired but the athletes medications have changed or their address needs up dating. No doctor's signature is required.

Athlete in Training (AIT)

An Athlete in Training (AIT) is a person with intellectual disabilities who trains in a Special Olympics sport but has not competed during the calendar year. These athletes, if training under the umbrella of a school district or other agency, and are not traveling to train outside their school or agency, do not need to have a medical release form on file. They must, however, be registered via the Athlete in Training Roster. If confidentiality is an issue, then the first name and last initial of the athlete may be used instead of the full name. The head of delegation must include the athlete's date of birth, gender and sport in which they are training. This form can be found on page B-12.

Young Athletes Program (YAP)

Children who participate in Young Athletes are also considered Athletes in Training. These athletes will be registered via a roster form. The form can be found here as a pdf and here as a Word document.

Athletes who are eligible to participate in the Young Athletes program may not continue to be eligible for Special Olympics competition once they have reached their potential developmental level. If this is the case, the athlete will be able to hold other roles within Special Olympics such as: Partners Clubs, Unified Sports® partner or volunteer.

Athlete Code of Conduct

Written by athletes the intent of the Code of Conduct is to provide behavior guidelines and set expectations for athletes. As representatives of the organization, athletes should always conduct themselves in a positive manner; exhibit respect for others and have positive interpersonal relationships; and be honest, trustworthy and courteous on and off the field of play. Participation may be suspended or revoked if an athlete is found to behave in a significantly inappropriate manner.

Upon entering Special Olympics Texas as an athlete of the organization, the coach should review and have the athlete sign the form (if possible). At that time, the coach should explain what the consequences are of the athlete not following the Code of Conduct. The Code of Conduct Agreement needs to be signed only once while the athlete participates with any given team. If the athlete changes teams, the Code of Conduct should be reviewed with the new coach, consequences explained and the Code of Conduct Agreement signed again. The Athlete Code of Conduct Agreement should be kept on file by the head coach or head of delegation.


Section C:
Volunteering with Special Olympics Texas

Special Olympics Texas would not exist today and could not have continued for more than 45 years without the time, energy, dedication, and commitment of tens of thousands of volunteers throughout the state of Texas.

Volunteer Expectations

As a volunteer, you are expected to...

Fulfill the responsibility of your assignment:

  • Carry out all aspects of your assignment.
  • Attend all required meetings.
  • Notify the volunteer coordinator if you cannot complete an assignment.

Set an example for the athlete:

  • Refrain from smoking, consuming alcohol or using profanity when acting as a volunteer.
  • Be discreet in your personal relationships with the athlete and avoid any behavior which may be misunderstood or misinterpreted.
  • Be helpful to and supportive of everyone associated with Special Olympics.

Demonstrate good sportsmanship:

  • Support the decisions of referees, judges and committees, and use proper dissent processes.
  • Be respectful during ceremonies and help your athletes be the same.
  • Praise the athletes for their efforts and encourage them to be happy for the success of other athletes.
  • Support and encourage other volunteers and staff.

Be continually vigilant and cognizant of the safety of the athlete:

  • Never leave an athlete unchaperoned.
  • Report anything you observe, either in the physical environment or in an individual’s behavior, which you feel may cause potential harm.

Be loyal to your commitment and to Special Olympics:

  • Look for constructive ways to overcome obstacles.

Take advantage of the opportunities Special Olympics offers you:

  • Be open to new ideas and new ways of doing things.
  • Become an active participant by extending your involvement to other roles of leadership and training.
  • Delight in the change that your involvement makes in the life of someone you know and in the many lives of those you’ll never meet.

Volunteer Opportunities

Sports Training

  • Become a certified coach or an assistant coach.
  • Organize, coach or play on a Unified Sports® team.
  • Use specific sports expertise to help set up sports clinics or Special Olympics Texas training schools.
  • Train individuals with more severe handicaps through the Motor Activities Training Program.
  • Become a trainer and hold training schools to train coaches and individuals interested in SOTX competitions.

Competitions

  • Become a certified competition director or a certified games director.
  • Assist as a key volunteer.
  • Organize special events, such as Athlete Village and Opening Ceremonies for the athletes.
  • Act as a day-of-event volunteer in multiple capacities such as greeter, timer, stager, escort, statistics recorder, measurer, line judge, pit crew, ball runner, spotter and more.
  • Set up and support the event area for competition (e.g., marking lines, putting up tents and tables, filling water coolers, etc.).

Schools

  • Start Special Olympics Unified Sports® teams.
  • Begin Special Olympics Partners Clubs®.
  • Implement and organize Project UNIFY - Unified Champion Schools programs.
  • Recruit members of school sports teams to become certified Special Olympics coaches or officials.
  • Conduct Special Olympics sports competitions or demonstrations during regular sports events.

Fundraising

  • Support the Law Enforcement Torch Run® for SOTX through corporate sponsorship or through participation in local events.
  • Make financial or in-kind donations as individuals or through a business.
  • Conduct fund raising campaigns in schools or through a civic group, church or other organization.
  • Name Special Olympics as the beneficiary of a life insurance policy, will or employee payroll deduction.
  • Make a donation, matching gift or memorial gift.
  • If you're a state or federal employee, look for us during the charitable campaign:
    • Combined Federal Campaign (CFC): 30634
    • State Employees Charitable Campaign (SECC): 100014

Professional

  • Provide medical support including free physicals and x-rays, pro bono legal or accounting services.
  • Become a clinical director for the Healthy Athletes program.
  • Make donations of goods, services or vital office supplies to local Special Olympics programs.

Public Relations

  • Provide strategic public relations assistance.
  • Assist with implementing public relations initiatives for the organization.
  • Assist with building media contacts statewide.
  • Write articles about Special Olympics Texas for the SOTX website and eNewsletters.
  • Volunteer photography, graphic design or web design services.

Administration

  • Serve on chapter board of directors, President's Advisory Council, chapter or area committees.
  • Help special education teachers or Special Olympics coaches prepare registration and medical forms.
  • Contribute general office help in SOTX offices (e.g., data entry, filing, answering phones, etc.).
  • Distribute materials for a Special Olympics event.

Civic Groups

  • Provide support for Special Olympics programs.
  • Organize Unified Sports® teams by combining group members with Special Olympics athletes.

Volunteer Eligibility

Special Olympics Texas makes the distinction between regular volunteers (Class A) and day-of-event volunteers (Class B). Each class has its own roles and responsibilities within SOTX.

Age Eligibility for Volunteers

  • For most Class A volunteers, the minimum age to volunteer is 15 years old.
  • The exceptions to this rule are head coaches, heads of delegation, bus drivers, key volunteers and chaperones, who all must be at least 18 years old to volunteer in these positions. Unified partners must be at least 8 years old for local competitions and 12 years old for state competitions.
  • Class A volunteers who volunteer for statewide competition must be at least 15 years old.
  • Class B volunteers have a different age breakdown:
    • 15 years old and older – can volunteer by themselves.
    • 8 - 14 years old – must be accompanied by a parent, guardian or chaperone.
    • 7 years old and younger – are not given volunteer assignments, but are welcomed and encouraged to be cheerleaders or spectators at competitions, accompanied by a parent/guardian. They must remain outside the competition area.
    • 8 - 14 years old in a group situation need a 4 to 1 ratio – meaning one adult (18 years old or older) for every four children. For example, if there was a group of 17 11-year-olds who wanted to volunteer for an event, five chaperones must accompany them.

Athletes as Volunteers

  • Special Olympics Texas athletes are welcomed and encouraged to volunteer in various roles within the organization, dependent on the individual’s interest and abilities.
  • All athletes wanting to volunteer must meet eligibility requirements, including age, training, paperwork, etc.
  • The only restriction for an athlete to volunteer is that at no time can the athlete volunteer be put or left in charge of the safety and welfare of other athletes or used in the ratio count for teams. As a result, the roles of head coach, head of delegation and chaperone are not available for athlete volunteers.
  • Refer to the Outreach Section for more details.

Special Olympics Volunteer Screening Policy in Texas

A person’s volunteer participation with Special Olympics Texas is an opportunity and privilege; it is not an entitlement. Special Olympics Texas has the right and responsibility to protect the well-being and safety of its participants: athletes, coaches, volunteers, staff and spectators.

Although Special Olympics cannot guarantee the safety of all participants, it recognizes its responsibility to take all reasonable steps to promote and ensure a safe environment for all. To that end, after considerable study and investigation, Special Olympics, Inc. (SOI) has developed and adopted a mandatory volunteer screening policy to set certain standards for each of the U.S. programs to follow with regard to both Class A and Class B volunteers.

Special Olympics Texas, in order to implement the U.S. Volunteer Screening Policy adopted by SOI, adopts the policy and procedures outlined in this section. 

Class A Volunteer Roles At-A-Glance

Volunteer Role Required Form Age Minimum Training Requirement OK for Athletes?
Administrative Volunteer Class A Form 18 years old
  • General Orientation
  • Protective Behaviors
Yes
Coach

Class A Form

Minor Reference Form (for minors only)

15 years old
  • General Orientation
  • Protective Behaviors (Ages 18+, unless the individual is a current high school student)
Yes - just not counted in the ratio count
Minor coaches ages 15-17 shall not be placed in a position of authority, put in charge of athletes or be considered chaperones.
Bus Driver Class A Form 18 years old
  • Valid TX Driver License
  • General Orientation
  • Protective Behaviors
No
Chaperone Class A Form 18 years old
  • General Orientation
  • Protective Behaviors
No
Committee Member

Class A Form

Minor Reference Form (for minors only)

15 years old
  • General Orientation
  • Protective Behaviors (Ages 18+, unless the individual is a current high school student)
Yes
Fiscal Volunteer Class A Form 18 years old
  • General Orientation
  • Protective Behaviors
No
Games/Competition Director Class A Form 18 years old
  • SOTX GD or CD Training
  • General Orientation
  • Protective Behaviors
No
Head Coach Class A Form 18 years old
  • Must be a certified coach
  • General Orientation
  • Protective Behaviors
No
Head of Delegation Class A Form 18 years old
  • Must be a certified coach
  • General Orientation
  • Protective Behaviors
No
Medical Personnel Class A Form & Any License/Certifications 18 years old
  • Primary: any state licensed medical status (EMT, RN, MD, etc.) or supplemental: any certified medical status (CPR/FA, etc.)
  • General Orientation
  • Protective Behaviors
No
Official (housed at Games) Class A Form & Any License/Certifications 18 years old
  • Varies by sport
  • General Orientation
  • Protective Behaviors (Ages 18+, unless the individual is a current high school student)
Yes
Professional Volunteer (legal, financial, PR, design, medical, etc.) Class A Form 18 years old
  • Varies by profession
  • General Orientation
  • Protective Behaviors
Yes
Torch Run Officer (handling > $15,000) Class A Form 18 years old
  • General Orientation
  • Protective Behaviors
No
Unified Partner

Class A Form & UP Form

Minor Reference Form (for minors only)

8 years old (12 years old for chapter)
  • General Orientation
  • Protective Behaviors  (Ages 18+, unless the individual is a current high school student)
No
Any volunteer who has access to personal information of SOTX athletes, volunteers and donors

Class A Form

 
  • General Orientation
  • Protective Behaviors
No

Class A Volunteers

  • Volunteers who have regular, close physical contact with athletes (e.g., coaches, chaperones, Unified Sports® partners, etc.).
  • Volunteers who are in a position of authority or supervision (real or apparent) (e.g., board members, committee members, officials, etc.).
  • Volunteers who are in a position of trust (e.g., competition key volunteers, etc.).
  • Volunteers who handle substantial amounts of cash ($15,000 or more annually) or other assets of the program (e.g., fund raising volunteers, certain Torch Run volunteers, Games Organizing Committee members, etc.).

To be considered for participation with Special Olympics Texas as a Class A volunteer, the applicant must submit a completed Class A Volunteer Application, complete General Orientation and Protective Behaviors trainings, and pass the criminal background check. Volunteering prior to completing all four steps is not permitted. The online Class A form can be found here. A printed copy can be found here.

The Special Olympics U.S. Risk Management and Insurance Task Force created online Protective Behaviors training material. The training material is a critical tool for protecting Special Olympics athletes from sexual, physical and emotional abuse.

All new Class A volunteer applicants ages 18 and older (unless they are a current high school student)  must complete this online training before they can become a Class A volunteer. The training must be completed at least once every three years.

Please visit: Protective Behaviors to complete the online training.

After completing the online training, volunteers will be asked to complete a 10 question quiz and submit their name and contact information.

Volunteers who do not have access to the internet may request a written version of the Protective Behaviors training. They will then complete a hard copy of the 10 question quiz and submit that document to the state office. Please contact the Director of Volunteer Services to receive the written version of the online training, or additional information regarding the Protective Behaviors training.

The decision of SOTX with regard to any Class A volunteer’s application rests within the sole and absolute discretion of SOTX. In exercising that discretion, SOTX shall be guided by its mission statement and the policy and procedure set forth herein.

All Class A volunteers shall be screened for participation in the Special Olympics program. Once screened and registered, Class A volunteers must re-register as a Class A volunteer every three years.

Application Process:

  • Each Class A volunteer shall:
    • Submit a Class A Volunteer Application,
    • Attend the General Orientation training as directed by SOTX whether in person or online,
    • Attend the SOI Protective Behavior Training (available online at www.specialolympics.org/protectivebehaviors) Volunteers 17 and younger are not required to complete Protective Behaviors, but upon turning 18 years old, they are required to complete this step unless they are a current high school student.
    • Complete a criminal background check through Verified Volunteers. Has your driver's license ever been suspended or revoked in any state or other jurisdiction?
    • Prospective volunteers who are under the age of 18 shall not be subject to a criminal background check but must submit the Class A Minor Reference Form in lieu of this step.

The Class A Volunteer Application and Protective Behaviors must be submitted every three years and the criminal background check every four years for the volunteer to remain active. The links to these steps are on the Special Olympics Texas website. www.sotx.org – Get Involved – Volunteer – Next Steps.)

IMPORTANT: After processing the required forms, quizzes, and criminal background check, the SOTX chapter office sends the applicant an email verification to keep for his/her own records. However, since SOTX does not recognize a person as a Class A volunteer unless he/she completes all of the steps, he/she CANNOT begin volunteering in any capacity until the volunteer confirmation email is received - no practices, no competitions, no volunteering.

Orientation:

  • All Class A volunteers shall attend the General Orientation training as directed by SOTX, whether in person or online.
  • All Class A volunteers shall attend the SOI Protective Behaviors training (find out more at www.specialolympics.org/protectivebehaviors) every three years. Volunteers 17 and younger are not required to complete Protective Behaviors; upon turning 18 years old, they are required to complete this step (unless they are a current high school student).

Unified Sports® Partners

A Unified Sports® partner is a hybrid of athlete and volunteer - a person without intellectual disabilities who competes in SOTX sports, but gives his/her time to train and compete as part of a Unified team. It is the “giving of time” that puts a Unified Sports® partner into the volunteer category, as well as safety and liability reasons.

    • All Unified Sports® partners must meet the following volunteer eligibility requirements:
      • Must have a current, signed Class A Volunteer Form on file (parent or guardian must sign if Unified Sports® partner is younger than 18 years of age). This form is good for three years, and then must be renewed.
      • Must have a current, signed Unified Sports® Partner Form on file (parent or guardian must sign if Unified Sports® partner is younger than 18 years of age.) This form is good for life, unless any insurance or contact information listed changes.
      • Must be at least 8 years old to compete at the area level and at least 12 years old to compete at the chapter level.
      • Must attend a Class A Volunteer General Orientation and Protective Behaviors training, as directed by SOTX, whether in person or online.
      • Must submit to a criminal background check by the approved SOTX vendor, Verified Volunteers, or if 17 years old or younger, submit a Minor Reference Form.
      • Refer to the Unified Sports® Section for more details.

Class A Application Authorization Requirements

  1. SOTX shall use the standard Class A Volunteer Application to obtain the required Special Olympics release.
  2. SOTX’s Class A Volunteer Application has been reviewed by legal counsel and is in compliance with all applicable state laws and regulations.
  3. SOTX shall train its staff on the automatic or potential disqualifiers as a result of the background checks.

Privacy Policy

SOTX recognizes that some of the information sought in the Class A Volunteer Application may be of a sensitive nature. This information is only required because of the responsibility that SOTX has to protect the well-being of all participants: athletes, coaches, volunteers, staff and spectators.

SOTX presently has a policy in place that directs all SOTX employees to maintain the confidentiality of all information obtained as part of the volunteer application process. Procedures are in place to keep all sensitive information confidential.

Should you have any questions concerning the volunteer application or this privacy policy, please contact the Director of Volunteer Services.

Results of Criminal Background Check

Note: Please refer to Appendix A for a comprehensive list of disqualifying offenses (automatic and restricted). All Appendices (A - E) are available online at www.sotx.org in the "Get Involved" Section.

  1. Automatic Disqualifier
    • If the criminal background check reveals a conviction for any of the offenses listed below, the volunteer applicant shall be disqualified automatically from participation as a volunteer with SOTX and will receive a certified letter as notification of his/her disqualification:
      • Conviction within applicant’s lifetime
        • Abandoning or Endangering a Child
        • Any Felony involving any Public Indecency Offense involving a Child
        • Any Felony involving a Weapon or Firearm
        • Any Felony involving Burglary or Robbery
        • Any Felony involving Manufacture or Sale of Narcotics
        • Agreement to Abduct from Custody
        • Arson and any related offenses
        • Aggravated Assault
        • Assault
        • Causing a Child's Death
        • Child Abuse
        • Criminal Sexual Conduct
        • Criminally Negligent Homicide
        • Deadly Conduct
        • Enticing a Child
        • Harassment or Stalking
        • Identity Theft
        • Improper Photography or Visual Recording
        • Indecency with a Child
        • Indecent Exposure
        • Injury to a Child, Elderly Individual, or Disabled Individual
        • Improper Relationship between Educator and Student
        • Kidnapping and any related offenses
        • Manslaughter
        • Murder and Capital Murder
        • Neglect of Child, Elderly Individual or Dependent Adult
        • Prostitution
        • Public Lewdness
        • Sale or Purchase of a Child or Advertising for Placement of a Child
        • Sexual Assault and Aggravated Sexual Assault
        • Terroristic Threat
        • Trafficking of Persons
  2. DWI Restrictive Disqualifiers
    • If the criminal background check or motor vehicle record check discloses a conviction for a DWI, the volunteer applicant shall automatically be disqualified from driving on behalf of SOTX and will receive a certified letter as notification of this restriction:
      • 1st DWI - Seven year driving restriction for SOTX
      • 2nd DWI - Seven year driving restriction for SOTX from date of second offense
      • 3rd DWI (or more) - Permanent driving restriction for SOTX
  3. Traffic Violation Restrictive Disqualifiers
    • If the criminal background check or motor vehicle record check discloses convictions for three or more moving violations within the three years immediately preceding the record check, the volunteer applicant shall automatically be disqualified from driving on behalf of SOTX and will receive a certified letter as notification of this restriction.
  4. Other Restrictive Disqualifiers
    • If the criminal background check discloses a conviction, other than those on the Appendix A list, SOTX will reject the volunteer applicant or restrict his/her volunteer role based on the severity of the offense and the date of the offense.
  5. Deferred Adjudication
    • With regard to any criminal or traffic violation, the granting of a deferred adjudication, or any similar disposition under the laws of another state whereby a finding of guilt is withheld or otherwise stayed, shall be considered a “conviction” unless the violation is officially dismissed. If the violation is not dismissed, at the time that the Class A Volunteer Form is submitted and reviewed, it shall be the applicant's responsibility to appeal to SOTX to be reconsidered as a volunteer when the applicant's probationary period has ended and the violation is legally dismissed.
    • If the applicant has more than one criminal or traffic violation granted deferred adjudication, SOTX reserves the right to disqualify the applicant from volunteering.

Appeal Process

The rejected volunteer applicant shall have the right to appeal SOTX’s decision in two specific instances:

  1. To declare that the criminal background check is in error and the applicant is not the person with the conviction or
  2. To admit that the conviction information is correct, but there were extenuating circumstances behind the crime.

In case of an erroneous background check, the applicant should contact Verified Volunteers (the Director of Volunteer Services can supply the contact information) and coordinate with them in correcting the error in the report. After Verified Volunteers has corrected their records, the applicant will be reviewed again for SOTX to determine his/her eligibility as a volunteer. Note: Please refer to Appendix E for Verified Volunteers’ contact information and error process.

In case of extenuating circumstances, the applicant has the right to appeal the rejection of his/her volunteer application under this paragraph by written request and explanation to the Director of Volunteer Services, within 30 days of the program's notification to the volunteer applicant (date of letter).

Upon receipt of the appeal request, the Director of Volunteer Services shall verify that the applicant was truthful on the Class A Volunteer Application regarding the four SOI Volunteer Qualifier Questions:

  1. Do you use illegal drugs?
  2. Have you ever been convicted of a criminal offense?
  3. Have you ever been charged with neglect, abuse, or assault?
  4. Has your driver license ever been suspended or revoked in any state?

If the applicant was truthful on the application and disclosed the conviction(s), the Director of Volunteer Services will confer with the Vice President of Shared Services as well as the SOTX legal counsel, as needed, regarding the applicant’s appeal request and explanation to weigh the applicant’s overall appropriateness to be a volunteer for the program.

If the applicant was not truthful on the application and did not disclose the conviction(s), the appeal will immediately be denied regardless of the circumstances.

In either case, the program’s decision not to accept a volunteer applicant is binding until the final decision is made regarding the applicant and his/her appeal, meaning no volunteering is allowed while the appeal is pending. SOTX shall have the right and the authority to make the final decision as to the acceptance of any volunteer applicant under this section.

All appendices (A-E) are available online at www.sotx.org.

Class B Volunteers

  • Volunteers who only have limited contact with athletes or who have contact with athletes accompanied by coaches and chaperones (e.g., day of event volunteers, Torch Run volunteers raising less than $15,000 annually, Healthy Athletes volunteers, officials not housed at Games, etc.).

To be considered for participation with SOTX as a Class B volunteer, the applicant must submit a completed and truthful Class B Registration Form to SOTX before taking on any volunteer responsibilities. An applicant is only considered a registered SOTX volunteer after submitting a Class B Registration Form and passing the photo identification check, not prior to those steps.

As with Class A volunteers, the decision of SOTX with regard to any Class B volunteer’s acceptance rests within the sole and absolute discretion of SOTX. In exercising that discretion, SOTX shall be guided by its mission statement and the policy and procedure set forth herein.

  1. Application Process: All Class B volunteers shall be screened for participation in the Special Olympics program as follows: Class B volunteers shall apply for participation by submitting a Day of Event Volunteer Registration Form at or before each event.
  2. Orientation: All volunteers shall attend a Class B volunteer orientation program as directed by SOTX.
  3. Day of Event: On the day of each event, the registered volunteer shall report to a designated volunteer coordinator for that event and verify his/her identification via a photo identification.

Annual Chapter Awards

Every year, Special Olympics Texas holds an awards ceremony to recognize and demonstrate its appreciation to the volunteers, athletes, families and businesses that make the Special Olympics experience possible for our athletes.

There are seven separate forms; please use the appropriate form for the category. If you wish to submit a nomination for any of the following awards, please fill out the Area/Chapter Awards Nomination Form at the end of this section. Individuals may be nominated in one category only.

Please send all signed, completed nominations to your area director for approval, postmarked no later than June 1. No late nomination forms will be accepted.

Volunteer of the Year

This award was established in 1980 to be given annually to the volunteer who best displays year-round spirit, dedication, and unselfish efforts on behalf of Special Olympics Texas and its athletes.

Each nomination will be weighed based on the following criteria:

  • The nominee must be currently registered as a SOTX Class A volunteer.
  • The nominee must display excellence in all levels of involvement.
  • The nominee must have been involved with SOTX for at least five years.
  • The nominee must be a positive role model for the athletes and other volunteers.


Award Winners

  • 2008 - Jr. Urioste, Wichita Falls
  • 2009 - Jim Domer, Lewisville
  • 2010 - Donald Calhoun, Bryan
  • 2011 - Dr. Margaret Woody, Waco
  • 2012 - Amy Ramey, San Antonio
  • 2013 - Ricardo Escamilla, Sr., Corpus Christi
  • 2014 - Martha Bishop, Dallas
  • 2015 - Rick Kohn, Greenville
  • 2016 - Renae Carswell, Lewisville
  • 2017 - Keith Maxwell, Belton

Male Athletes of the Year: 15 - 21 and 22 and older

These awards acknowledge the male athletes who embody the spirit of the Special Olympics movement – on and off the field.

Starting in 2002, this award was split into two age categories: 15 - 21 and 22 and older.

The Male Athlete of the Year should be at least 15 years of age and have been involved with Special Olympics at least five years. Athlete nominations should be weighed based on the following criteria: number of sports in which the athlete competes; area and chapter level participation; good sportsmanship; leadership among other athletes; service in the ALPs; participation outside of SOTX such as school, work or community organization.

Award Winners

  • 2008 - Derek Schottle, Sugar Land (15 - 21) and Wilburn Buffalo, Spring (22 and older)
  • 2009 - Pedro Munoz, Los Fresnos (15 - 21) and Roel Martinez, Edinburg (22 and older)
  • 2010 - Adam Cashion, Boerne (15 - 21) and Joshua Burton, LaPorte (22 and older)
  • 2011 - Brandon LeMaster, El Paso (15 - 21) and Paul Holland, Shady Shores (22 and older)
  • 2012 - Brennan O'Donnell, Round Rock (15 - 21) and Lyndon LaPlante, Keller (22 and older)
  • 2013 - Christian Cisneros, Spring (15 - 21) and Ronnie Farrell, Manchaca (22 and older)
  • 2014 - Charles Pelz, Missouri City (15-21) and Jonathan Blackmon, Flower Mound (21 and older)
  • 2015 - Riley Blatz, Round Rock (15 - 21) and Scott Wendt, Rockwall (21 and older)
  • 2016 - Brendan West, Pasadena (15-21) and Kyle Eddlemon, Missouri City (22 and older)
  • 2017 - Jarred Duran, Celina (15 - 21) and Augustin Serna, Laredo (22 and older)

Female Athletes of the Year: 15 - 21 and 22 and older

These awards honor the female athletes who represent the energy of the Special Olympics movement – on and off the field. Starting in 2002, this award was split into two age categories: 15 - 21 and 22 and older.

The Female Athlete of the Year should be at least 15 years of age and have been involved with Special Olympics at least five years. Athlete nominations should be weighed based on the following criteria: number of sports in which the athlete competes; area and chapter level participation; good sportsmanship; leadership among other athletes; service in the ALPs including service as a representative of SOTX; participation outside of SOTX such as school, work or community organization.

Award Winners

  • 2008 - Vanessa Parra, San Antonio (15 - 21) and Lisa Lepley, Houston (22 and older)
  • 2009 - Robyn Pazderny, Richmond (15 - 21) and Kristen Medley, San Antonio (22 and older)
  • 2010 - Seneca Cantu, Converse (15 - 21) and Christine Jasso, El Paso (22 and older)
  • 2011 - Audrey Alvarez, Graham (15 - 21) and Brett Mohammadi, San Antonio (22 and older)
  • 2012 - Dalia Martinez, San Antonio (15 - 21) and Leanne Owens, Dallas (22 and older)
  • 2013 - Rebecca Carkhuff, Spring (15 - 21) and Stacey Johnson, Allen (22 and older)
  • 2014 - Stephanie Rico, Laredo (15-21) and Schelly Porter, Commerce (22 and older)
  • 2015 - Kayla Gray, Friendswood (15 - 21) and Kathryn Albertini, Southlake (22 and older)
  • 2016 - Kylie Tyson, Canyon (15-21) and Julia Kilgore, Wichita Falls (22 and older)
  • 2017 - Caitlin Ripley, Houston (15-21) and Laura Mashuca, Laredo (22 and older)

Coach of the Year

This award recognizes the coach who best demonstrates a positive influence on his/her athletes, while helping them to succeed in competition as well as in life.

Each nomination will be weighed based on the following criteria:

  • The nominee must be a SOTX certified coach.
  • The nominee must be a currently registered SOTX Class A volunteer.
  • The nominee constantly works to expand his/her knowledge of the sport.
  • The nominee must have been involved with SOTX for at least five years.
  • The nominee must be a positive role model for athletes and families.

Award Winners

  • 2008 - Judy Seitz, San Antonio
  • 2009 - Edward Waring, San Antonio
  • 2010 - Terrence Baugh, Arlington
  • 2011 - Barbara Montalvo, Edcouch
  • 2012 - J'Nette Thorne, Amarillo
  • 2013 - Pamela Fowler, Grand Prairie
  • 2014 - Patrick Noonan, Addison
  • 2015 - Rose Antony, Rockwall
  • 2016 - Clara Edwards, Monahans
  • 2017 - Olga Guierrez, Laredo

Trainer of the Year

This award was created for the person who is committed to training and making every effort to encourage others to train or coach at the highest level. Each nomination will also be weighed based on the following criteria:

  • The nominee designs and implements a minimum of two trainings at the state and/or area level that follow the mission and philosophy of Special Olympics Texas and Special Olympics, Inc.
  • The nominee encourages growth and change within the organization.
  • The nominee has been a training director or manager for at least two years.
  • The nominee is a current SOTX Class A volunteer.
  • The nominee has been actively involved with training at the area level.
  • The nominee completes Special Olympics Texas training certification requirements including: a Train the Trainer Course, applicable practicum hours and the annual training re-certification.
  • The nominee upholds the spirit of sportsmanship and love of participation.

Award Winners

  • 2007 - Karen Jones, Conroe
  • 2008 - Nancy Manley, Round Rock
  • 2009 - Leslie Low, Flower Mound
  • 2010 - Debra Blackwood, San Antonio
  • 2011 - Maelynne Pease, San Antonio
  • 2012 - Shirley Johnson, San Antonio
  • 2013 - Diana Garza, Corpus Christi
  • 2014 - Lisabeth Lassiter, Allen
  • 2015 - Sally Stacy, Graham
  • 2016 - Laurie Martin, Saint Jo
  • 2017 - J'Nette Thorne, Amarillo

Outstanding Volunteer for Sports and Competition

For voluntary service that improves the quality of Special Olympics sports and competitions.

Each nomination will also be weighed based on the following criteria:

  • The nominee must be currently registered as a SOTX Class A volunteer.
  • The nominee must have been involved with SOTX for at least two years.
  • The nominee has been a certified competition or games director.

Award Winners

  • 2008 - Bill and Evelyn Merrill, Universal City
  • 2009 - David Kight, Willis
  • 2010 - Larry Lobue, Missouri City
  • 2011 - Cindy Benzon, Spring
  • 2012 - Sherri Mell, San Antonio
  • 2013 - Julia Scott, Carrollton
  • 2014 - Stephen Pittenger, Houston
  • 2015 - Teresa Sullivan, San Antonio
  • 2016 -
  • 2017 - George Ann Benson, Lubbock

Outstanding Service from a Business/Corporation

For year-round service (in the form of volunteer support, for example) or financial backing (including in-kind donations) from a business.

Award Winners

  • 2007 - City of Richardson
  • 2008 - H-E-B, Houston
  • 2009 - Walmart
  • 2010 - GEO Group, San Antonio
  • 2011 - Bell Helicopter Textron, Fort Worth
  • 2012 - Southwest Dairy Farmers, Sulphur Springs
  • 2013 - Sysco Central Texas, Inc., New Braunfels
  • 2014 - Broadway Bank, San Antonio
  • 2015 - Coca-Cola Refreshments of Houston
  • 2016 - FC Dallas, Frisco
  • 2017 - Embassy Suites Houston Downtown, Houston

Family of the Year

For the family of a Special Olympics Texas athlete that has made and continues to make a unique and lasting contribution to the lives of Special Olympics athletes. Each nomination must be accompanied by a complete list of all immediate family members.

Award Winners

  • 2008 - The Bannister Family, North Richland Hills
  • 2009 - The Baxter Family, Pasadena
  • 2010 - The Ford Family, Canyon
  • 2011 - The Calhoun-Erdman Family, Bryan
  • 2012 - The Bethea Family, Corpus Christi
  • 2013 - The Igo Family, Plano
  • 2014 - The Marshall Family, Sugar Land
  • 2015 - The Gresham Family, Sherman
  • 2016 - The Mehnert Family, Carrollton
  • 2017 - The Salazar Family, Robstown

Outstanding Volunteer for Fundraising

For voluntary service in implementing fund raising opportunities at the local, area or chapter level.

Each nominee will also be weighed based on the following criteria:

  • The nominee must be currently registered as a SOTX Class A volunteer.
  • The nominee must have been involved with SOTX for at least two years.

Award Winners

  • 2008 - Glenn Schaaf, Houston
  • 2009 - Kathy Ashwin, San Antonio
  • 2011 - Marilyn Senneway, New Braunfels
  • 2012 - Hector Amaya, Houston
  • 2013 - Teresa Ramsey, Graham
  • 2014 - Doug Sisk, Duncanville
  • 2015 - Corpus Christi Police Department, Corpus Christi
  • 2016 - Jason James, Bryan
  • 2017 - Chief Doug Reim, Highland Village

Outstanding Service for Outreach

For the people, group or organization whose volunteer service has expanded the opportunities for people with intellectual disabilities to become involved in the Special Olympics Texas program.

Each nomination will also be weighed based on the following criteria:

  • The nominee must be currently registered as a SOTX Class A volunteer.
  • The nominee must have been involved with SOTX for at least two years.

Award Winners

  • 2008 - Everett and Sarah Castellano, McAllen
  • 2009 - Shirley Johnson, San Antonio
  • 2010 - Mary Jane Carvell, New Caney
  • 2011 - Timothy Taggart, San Antonio
  • 2012 - Abigail Wylie, Katy
  • 2013 - Spencer Mackenzie, Denton
  • 2014 - Lucy Gutierrez, Laredo
  • 2015 - Signa Segrest, Houston
  • 2016 - Gwenda Taggart, San Antonio
  • 2017 - Cypress Champions, Cypress

Outstanding Service from a Community Leader

For the professional athlete, celebrity, or civic leader who has demonstrated devotion to individuals with intellectual disabilities and concern for improving their skills through Special Olympics.

Award Winners

  • 2008 - Joe Villarreal, San Antonio
  • 2009 - Carl Robinson, El Paso
  • 2010 - Chad Hedrick, Spring
  • 2011 - Judge Danny Valdez, Laredo
  • 2012 - Roberto Santos, Laredo
  • 2013 - Arnold Sosa, Corpus Christi
  • 2014 - Joe Villarreal, San Antonio
  • 2015 - David Gonzalez, Laredo
  • 2016 - Greg Simmons, San Antonio
  • 2017 - Terri Fuman, Lubbock

Outstanding Service from a Civic or Service Organization

For year-round community service and/or monetary support from an agency, civic group or service organization.

Each nomination will also be weighed based on the following criteria:

  • The nominee must have been involved with SOTX for at least five years.

Award Winners

  • 2008 - Educational Service Center 2, Corpus Christi
  • 2009 - Midland Freshman High School, Midland
  • 2010 - Xceed Resources, El Paso
  • 2011 - The Kinkaid School - Class of 2012, Houston
  • 2012 - Alhambra, El Paso
  • 2013 - Balcones Country Club Tennis Group, Austin
  • 2014 - Texas A&M International University, Laredo
  • 2015 - UTSA: Alpha Sigma Alpha - Delta Upsilon Chapter, San Antonio
  • 2016 - Houston Bar Association, Special Olympics Committee, Houston
  • 2017 - Knights of Columbus Council 12803, Lubbock

Unified Sports® Partner of the Year

The Unified Sports® Partner of the Year Award is dedicated to the individual who embodies the philosophy of Unified Sports®. By dedicating themselves to the integration of athletes in the community, promoting skill development, and fostering self-esteem among athletes on their Unified Sports® team.

Each nomination will also be weighed based on the following criteria:

  • The nominee must be currently registered as a SOTX Class A volunteer and Unified Sports® partner.
  • The nominee must actively participate on a Unified team as a partner.
  • The nominee must have been involved with SOTX for at least two years.
  • The nominee must be a positive role model for the athletes and other Unified Sports® partners.

Award Winner

  • 2008 - Virgie Shinn, El Paso
  • 2009 - Sean Lucas, Austin
  • 2010 - Eugene Calabro, El Paso
  • 2011 - Justin King, Round Rock
  • 2012 - Gary Schwartz, Corpus Christi
  • 2013 - Kimberly Taggart, San Antonio
  • 2014 - Austin Combs, Deer Park
  • 2015- Melinda Escamilla, Corpus Christi
  • 2016 - Jim Bomer, Lewisville
  • 2017 - Timmothy Brown, Abilene

Section D:
Establising a Local Program

Steps for Creating a Local Team

Special Olympics Texas divides the state into 19 areas for your convenience and accessibility. Look at the Special Olympics Texas Map to find out in which area you live, then contact your program/area director (area phone numbers and addresses are listed www.sotx.org/areas). The area office will have information on hand that will help you become familiar with Special Olympics.

New local programs, that wish to be officially sanctioned by SOTX, must apply for official delegation status. The Request for New Delegation Form must be turned into the area office. The area office and Area Sports Management Team reserve their right to deny a request if the responsible leadership is not in good standing with SOTX.

Attend the next coaches certification school for the sport you are interested in coaching. Check with the area office to see when the upcoming training opportunities are available. The first step will be to attend General Orientation, approximately one and a half hours in length. This session will provide you with an overview of the Special Olympics history and philosophy. General Orientation may be taken online. Following the General Orientation, you will need to attend the sports-specific session, which is about four to five hours. Contact the training director for your area listed in Section V for assistance. The website also has the latest coaching information - visit www.specialolympicstexas.org.

Contact your area Special Olympics Texas office for rule books or other items you may need. Rules can also be found at www.specialolympics.org.

During this time, you should be identifying potential athletes, if you don’t already have them, as well as facilities to train them. Or, find a group that needs a coach or additional transportation and equipment (balls, cones, batons, shot puts, etc.). Be sure that your athletes meet the criteria for Special Olympics Texas, as outlined in Section B. Your area director can help you make contact.

Each athlete must have a physical exam, and you must submit the results of this exam on the Athlete Enrollment/Medical Release Form to the area office before the athlete's first training session. It is wise to keep at least one copy of the original in your files. A copy must be kept with you at all times during Special Olympics activities. The athlete’s parent or guardian must sign the form unless he/she is at least 18 years old and are their own legal guardian.

Train your athletes. SOTX rules require a minimum of eight weeks of training prior to competition.

Most sports offered at the area level are also available at the chapter level. Participation in local competitions is required prior to area competitions. Additionally, you may wish to compete in invitational events or events in an adjacent area.

Each event has a deadline for entry. You must submit the proper entry forms by the deadline designated by the area office.

There may be coaches meetings, area conferences or other meetings you must attend to keep up with current information. There will be a mandatory coaches meeting the night before an event or early in the morning before the event begins.

Athletes must compete at the area level before they are eligible to compete at the chapter level. Athletes must be at least 12 years old on the first day of chapter level competition to be able to compete at the chapter level (8 years old for area/local competitions). Also, there may be quotas or special criteria to be able to compete at the chapter level.

Submit local, invitational and area entry forms to the appropriate meet director or area office. For the six chapter level events offered annually, all entries must be sent through the area office, which will then forward them to the chapter office.

There must be one certified coach for each delegation in individual sports and one certified coach per team for team sports. There should be at least one other certified coach present to fill in for the head coach if he/she becomes unable to complete his/her duties.

The official ratio for Special Olympics Texas is 4 athletes to 1 adult, and for the purpose of supervision, all minor Unified Sports® partners (17 years old or younger) are included in the athlete count. For an event with no overnight stay, the 4 to 1 ratio is required, but the gender specific ratio is not; it is advised that delegations have at least one chaperone of both genders to handle certain situations. For an event with an overnight stay, the 4 to 1 ratio of four athletes/minors to one adult is required by gender, meaning every four male athletes/minors need one male chaperone and every four female athletes/minors need one female chaperone. However, we urge all delegations to strive to maintain the 4 to 1 by gender ratio at all times.

Develop a budget for each sport, and for the year.

Special Olympics provides the framework for which athletes with intellectual disabilities can train and compete. The organization will either recommend or require certain policies or processes to be followed. However, this is not to say that Special Olympics delegations may not also have their own policies and processes that should be in place as long as they are not opposed to Special Olympics policies. For example, Special Olympics requires a 4 to 1 chaperone to athlete ratio which is gender specific for housing during chapter games. A delegation may have a lower ratio if they choose. The safety and well-being of our athletes should be first and foremost when making decisions.

Delegations are not allowed to form boards of directors or to have bylaws. Delegations may form steering committees, which can function to assist with decision-making within the delegation.

Fundraising/Banking Policy

Special Olympics Texas, Inc. (SOTX) is the sole entity in the State of Texas which is authorized to use the name, logo, trademark, or any other representation of Special Olympics. SOTX may authorize a team/delegation to use the name and/or logo, when a request is submitted following the guidelines in Section U. No other entity is allowed to make reference to Special Olympics, including use in public relations/media outreach, in any fund raising activities, or in any of its organizational documents on record with the State of Texas.

No team/delegation may have the same name as another corporate entity that supports or raises funds for a team/delegation. No team/delegation may incorporate.

No entity other than SOTX may negotiate (cash) any check or any other financial instrument which is made payable to SOTX or to the team/delegation/booster club. A team/delegation/booster club must deposit all checks payable to SOTX or to the team/delegation/booster club into SOTX's Bank of America centralized bank account.

A team/delegation/booster club may conduct fund raising activities in the name of the team using the name, logo and/or trademarks of Special Olympics only after receiving advance approval from the SOTX Chapter Headquarters. All checks made payable to SOTX or to the team must be deposited into the SOTX Bank of America centralized bank account, which is maintained for the exclusive benefit of the team. Contribution checks should be made payable to Special Olympics Texas, Inc. - FBO *team name*.

Any HoD, coach or Class A volunteer who serves in a position of responsibility or authority with another organization which, in the reasonable judgment of SOTX, constitutes a conflict of interest with SOTX, will be required to sign a prescribed waiver annually as part of re-certification.

No team/delegation/booster club may maintain any outside bank account to hold contributed funds. All such funds must be centralized with SOTX or centralized with an entity (i.e., school, group home).

Any violations of this policy by heads of delegation, coaches, Class A volunteers or teams will be subject to disciplinary actions including, but not limited to, probation, suspension, or disbanding. Violations of this policy by other entities may be referred for legal action, if voluntary compliance is not achieved.

Procedures Relating to Team Funds Held by SOTX

Each head of delegation will be required annually to sign a statement acknowledging the fund raising/banking policy. This requirement will occur as part of the re-certification process.

In the event of the dissolution of the team/delegation (team becomes inactive, i.e., athletes no longer are competing), all funds held for the team in the SOTX centralized account will be maintained for a period of time not to exceed 12 months to allow a successor team to be established. If a successor team is not established within this time frame, the funds will revert to the Special Olympics Texas, Inc. operating account.

Team funds may not be spent for any service that is considered wages and as such, requires reporting to the Internal Revenue Service as wages. Generally, acceptable expenditures include tangible products and certain services which directly benefit the athletes or the team as an entity. Examples of these expenditures include, but are not limited to, hotel accommodations for events, uniforms, etc.

Within the SOTX centralized bank account, each team may request its own deposit slips which are coded to identify which team has made a deposit to the account. Each team shall maintain copies of checks which it has deposited.

When expenses need to be paid, either in advance or on a reimbursement basis, the team will submit appropriate documentation to the chapter finance department by fax or email. All expense reimbursements must be received within 3 months of the expense being incurred. Any expenses submitted after 3 months may not be paid. Upon receipt of the documentation, a check will be issued within 2-3 business days and the team's cash balance will be debited. If the team does not have a sufficient balance to cover the check request, a check will not be issued.

Form W-9 is required by the Internal Revenue Service for each new vendor. We must have the vendor's current W-9 on file before we can process payment. All W-9's must be updated annually. Please attach a W-9 to each check request from a vendor not currently in our system.

Quarterly statements of the team accounts will be issued by email to the heads of delegation for review and reconciliation. More frequent statements are available upon request. Alert the Finance Department of a change in email address by sending an email to acct_genledgr.chp@sotx.org.


Section E:
Coaches Training and Certification

How do you become certified?

The Coaches Certification Program is designed to train volunteers who wish to develop their coaching skills and become certified Special Olympics coaches. Listed below are the six steps one must take to become a certified coach with Special Olympics:

  • Complete the General Orientation training either online or in person.
  • Complete the Protective Behaviors training either online or in person.
  • Attend a sports-specific training offered through SOTX, or the online Coaching Special Olympics Athletes training offered through ASEP Coaching Special Olympics Athletes Course.
  • Be a registered Class A volunteer with SOTX. (An applicant is only considered a registered Class A volunteer after submitting a Class A Volunteer Application, completing the General Orientation and Protective Behaviors trainings, and passing the criminal background check, not prior to those events.)
  • Complete the online Sports Information Guide training online or in person (if new SOTX Coach)
  • Complete the online Concussion in Sports training.
    (Forward completion certificate to Area Director, or to dir_progtrg.chp@sotx.org)

Who should attend?

Coaches certification is recommended for anyone who plans to coach Special Olympics. It is required for the head coach of a team wishing to enter local, area, regional or chapter competitions.

Coaches who enter their teams in meets, tournaments or games at the local, area, regional or chapter level will have their certification status verified. Any team entered without a certified head coach will not be allowed to participate. The burden of proof will be on the individual, not on the chapter or area office, if a coach’s status is questioned.

The head of delegation and head coach listed on the Delegation Entry Form must attend the event with the team. The head of delegation and/or the head coach may be required to present a valid form of identification during registration, which may include the SOTX coach card.

How is certification maintained?

A coach must retain his/her certification by meeting the four criteria listed below:

  1. Annually, the coach can attend an area conference in person or online. This opportunity is offered to coaches from early January through the end of February. The online Area Conference will remain online throughout the year for coaches to stay updated on rule changes, policies and procedures, new sports, the calendar, etc. It is during the area conference that coaches will learn about rule changes, policies and procedures, new sports, the calendar of events, etc. Coaches who choose to attend the area conference in person should attend the conference in their area (or they may attend an area conference in another area with the prior approval of the appropriate area director).
  2. The coach must remain active in the Special Olympics program in the specific sport(s)selected (e.g., coach, official, sport committee member, etc.). An absence of more than 12 months will result in a lapse of certification and require the coach to attend another training school. Remaining active as a coach examples include, but are not limited to, practicing with a team in the sport; incorporating the sport activities into the job; being scholastically involved with the sport; conducting clinics in the sport; attending TAHPERD conferences or other organizations where sports are a main focus; being involved in the sports competitions; or serving as a training clinic sports clinician.
  3. The coach must attend all required coaches meetings for the sport(s) in which they are active.
  4. Every three years, the coach must complete Protective Behaviors and Concussion in Sports Training and submit a new Class A Volunteer Application.
  5. Every four years, the coach must complete a criminal background check.

Coaches Conduct

Certification may be revoked if a coach fails to meet these requirements, or if he or she behaves in a significantly negligent or incompetent manner. The program/area director and area training director/manager, along with the area management team, may petition the chapter office to revoke the certification of a coach within their area if they feel there is justification to do so, after providing intervention at the area level.

Special Olympics coaches are role models whose behavior serves as a positive example for their athletes. They must strive to provide the fairest and most positive competitive experience to every Special Olympics athlete in a competition.

A coach is expected to uphold the Olympic ideals and values. The coach must exhibit, above all, respect for the athletes, coaches, volunteers, families and officials (game and staff). They must have positive interpersonal relationships; uphold the highest of moral values; and be honest, trustworthy and courteous to all people at all levels of the organization. Furthermore, the coach’s principles of coaching must be compatible with the philosophy and objectives of Special Olympics. If a coach’s philosophies are in conflict with those of Special Olympics, then he or she should not seek or accept a coaching position.

The coach’s verbal and physical behavior is expected to reflect a positive and constructive attitude toward Special Olympics competition and toward those volunteers, coaches, officials and event coordinators whose time and efforts provide that competitive opportunity. This attitude should reflect a confidence in the decisions of the games committee and sports officials, and a belief that their decisions are made with the best interests of a fair competitive experience in mind and are in keeping with the goals and philosophies of Special Olympics.

The coach accepts the responsibility for the behavior of his or her athletes, parents and spectators, both in and out of the competitive arena, while attending a Special Olympics event. Coaches should be recognized by their athletes, parents and spectators as the sole representative in dealing with the games committee and sports officials.

The Special Olympics coach is one who has succeeded in tempering his or her own competitive urges and desires for success in order to ensure that the fairest and most positive competitive experience is realized by all people involved in the event.

A good coach realizes that the Special Olympics experience is not limited to competition. Athletes benefit in every facet of their lives. They become more productive at home, in the workplace and in society as a whole. The most successful coach is one who focuses on the lifelong benefits the athlete receives, not solely on competition.

Athlete Recruitment

In keeping with the Special Olympics coaching philosophy of athletes first, winning second, Special Olympics coaches shall not actively recruit athletes from other teams/delegations for the sole purpose of persuading that athlete to leave his/her affiliated delegation with promises of better conditions or other valuable considerations. Coaches who engage in the practice shall be considered to be in violation of the Coaches Code of Conduct Agreement and subject to review.

Form: Coaches Code of Conduct Agreement

Disciplinary Measures

Should the behavior or attitudes of any coach or other faction of the member organization be contrary to these principles or to the goals and philosophies of Special Olympics, the following steps may be taken by the games committee, sports officials and/or Special Olympics Texas in an effort to alleviate the situation without further affecting Special Olympics athletes:

  • The coach may be notified of the undesirable behavior and be requested to remedy the situation in order to continue participation.
  • The coach may be requested to withdraw personally, or the entire team may be asked to withdraw, from the remainder of the event or tournament.
  • In the event of extreme or repeated behavior contrary to the best interests of Special Olympics athletes, Special Olympics representatives may:
    • Prevent the coach or organization from participating in any or all Special Olympics events for a specified period of time.
    • Prevent the coach or organization from participating in Special Olympics Texas indefinitely.

Complaints against a coach or other member of an organization must be filed with the appropriate area director, in writing, within two weeks of the occurrence. The written complaint must be signed by the person filing the complaint and cite the specific behavior inconsistent with the rules, regulations, policies and procedures of Special Olympics Texas and Special Olympics, Inc. The program/area director, in consultation with the area planning committee, the area management team or the training team will take one of the following actions:

  • The offending person may be notified of the undesirable behavior and be requested to remedy the situation for continued participation.
  • The situation will be discussed with the involved parties with no further action.
  • The person or organization will be prevented from participating in Special Olympics for a defined period of time.

The area staff and volunteers will assist the person and/or organization in every reasonable manner to see that compliance to the rules, regulations, policies, procedures and philosophies of Special Olympics is achieved.

The appeal process for the coach is found in Section G.

Offenses occurring at chapter games will be handled by the Vice President of Field Services and the rules committee. Further disciplinary action will be referred to the area management team, if necessary.

Head of Delegation

Requirements

  • Must be a registered SOTX volunteer [must have a current Class A Volunteer Application on file, must have attended General Orientation and Protective Behaviors (in person or online), and must have passed the criminal background check].
  • Must hold a current coaching certification for any sport. A coaching certification must be attained through attendance at a Special Olympics sponsored training school.
  • annually.
  • Will be responsible for informing all coaches and athletes of area conference material.
  • Must be 18 years of age or older.
  • Must be a mature, reliable individual who is capable of supervising his or her athletes.
  • Must uphold the idea that competing and winning are secondary to experiencing and participating.
  • Must be a role model exhibiting positive interpersonal relationships, moral values, respect, honesty, trust, fairness and courtesy toward the athletes, coaching staff, volunteers, families, officials and SOTX staff.
  • Will be responsible for the conduct and well-being of his or her athletes and of the coaching staff and registered chaperones.
  • Be present with delegation at all competitions.
  • Must complete Protective Behaviors, Concussion in Sports training, and submit a new Class A Volunteer Application every three years.

Responsibilities

  • Set a budget for the delegation and oversee fundraisers.
  • Develop the budget for each sport and for the year.
  • Oversee the head coaches and ensure that coaches’ certifications are up to date. A roster of all SOTX certified coaches will be posted on the SOTX website, and this roster will be updated quarterly for your reference.
  • Delegate coaching assignments.
  • Keep medical forms up-to-date. Prior to submittal, the should proofread the forms to make sure that all of the information on the front and back of the application is completely filled out and legible. He or she should also make sure that all of the needed signatures are present. Once all information is checked, a copy should be made for the delegation file and the original should be mailed to the area office.
  • Notify the area and chapter offices of any changes in leadership (head coach) or contact people for the delegation. Address information is vitally important to communication between the area/chapter office and the head coach.
  • Be responsible for the completion and correctness of all entries submitted for local, area and chapter events by the established deadlines. This duty includes, but is not limited to, verifying that the head coaches listed on the delegation entries are registered Class A volunteers with SOTX and hold the correct sport certification.
  • Make sure that all delegation volunteers (all chaperones, head coaches, coaching staff, Unified Sports® partners, any volunteer bus drivers as well as yourself) have completed all four steps for Class A registration (Class A Volunteer Application, General Orientation, Protective Behaviors, and criminal background check). No one is considered a volunteer without completing these four steps.
  • Assist the head coaches with the paperwork for all events.
  • Keep up with area and chapter news through meetings, training programs, conferences and online information at www.sotx.org.
  • Communicate with parents, guardians and caregivers regarding training and competition information keeping them abreast of the details pertaining to the delegation. Examples of the type of information which should be provided are: times, dates and location of competition or training, housing information, who is in charge, phone numbers in case of emergencies, sleeping arrangements, how to dress or what to pack, etc. Be specific. Encourage parents to get involved.
  • Follow Special Olympics Texas guidelines when conducting fund raising activities and reporting all income and expenditures in conducting such activities to the program/area director or development director.
  • Execute the legal duties of a coach by:
    • Providing a safe environment.
    • Properly planning the activity.
    • Evaluating athletes for injury or incapacity.
    • Matching athletes or making sure that athletes who compete against each other are of similar abilities.
    • Providing adequate and proper equipment.
    • Ensuring that training is held in a physically safe environment (having a lifeguard present, etc.).
    • Supervising all activities closely.
    • Knowing emergency procedures and first aid.
    • Keeping adequate records.
    • Being present with the team during all competitions.
    • Ensuring there must be one certified coach for each delegation in individual sports and one certified coach per team for team sports. There should be at least one other certified coach present to fill in for the head coach if he/she becomes unable to complete his/her duties.
    • Following the official ratio for Special Olympics Texas of 4 athletes to 1 adult, and for the purpose of supervision, all minor Unified Sports® partners (17 years old or younger) are included in the athlete count. For an event with no overnight stay, the 4 to 1 ratio is required, but the gender specific ratio is not; it is advised that delegations have at least one chaperone of both genders to handle certain situations. For an event with an overnight stay, the 4 to 1 ratio of four athletes/minors to one adult is required by gender, meaning every four male athletes/minors need one male chaperone and every four female athletes/minors need one female chaperone. We urge all delegations to strive to maintain the 4 to 1 gender ratio at all times.

Head Coach

Requirements

  • Must be a registered SOTX volunteer [must have a current Class A Volunteer Application on file, must have attended General Orientation and Protective Behaviors (in person or online), completed Concussion in Sports training, and must have passed the criminal background check].
  • Must hold a current coaching certification for the sport in which he or she is coaching. A coaching certification must be attained through attendance at a Special Olympics Texas sponsored training school.
  • Suggested to attend Area Conference annually.
  • Must be 18 years of age or older.
  • Must be a mature, reliable individual who is capable of supervising his or her athletes.
  • Must uphold the idea that competing and winning are secondary to experiencing and participating.
  • Must be a role model exhibiting positive interpersonal relationships, moral values, respect, honesty, trust, fairness and courtesy toward the athletes, coaching staff, volunteers, families, officials and SOTX staff.
  • Will be responsible for the conduct and well-being of his or her athletes and of the other coaching staff and registered chaperones.
  • Must complete Protective Behaviors and submit a new Class A Volunteer Application every three years.
  • Must complete Concussion in Sports Training every three years.

Responsibilities

  • Promote fair competition at local, area, regional and chapter games.
  • Adhere to the policies and procedures of Special Olympics, Inc. and Special Olympics Texas, Inc.
  • Notify athletes or guardians of physical obligations and deadlines.
  • Comply with registration procedures.
  • Selecting – The coaching staff will recruit athletes and properly complete and submit all the required medical and registration materials by the established deadlines.
  • Assessing – The coaching staff will assess each athlete to determine the individual and/or team skill level for training and competition in his or her selected sports.
  • Training – The coaching staff will develop individualized training programs for each athlete. The programs shall include fundamental skill instruction, conditioning and instruction on competition and rules. The training program should be a minimum of eight weeks in duration.
  • Schedule eight weeks of training prior to competition and provide as many opportunities for competition as possible, including a minimum of one local competition or two scrimmages prior to the area event.
  • Teach all coaching staff and athletes the rules of the sport.
  • Obtain and read all the necessary rules, forms and materials needed to conduct training.
  • Complete all forms and meet all deadlines assigned by the program/area director and Special Olympics Texas for registering athletes including:
    • Sending the Athlete Enrollment/Medical Release Form to the area office.
    • Correcting and completing all entry forms for each competition.
  • Attend area and/or chapter coaches meetings and training clinics.
  • Provide periodic and final reports to the area director as requested.
  • Complete event evaluations and recommendations for rule revisions.
  • Keep accurate records on all athletes and activities including:
    • Registration for local, area and chapter games.
    • Training assessments, evaluations and skill assessment test results.
  • Be present with the team during all competitions.
  • Exercise exemplary actions, attitudes and values becoming of a person in a leadership role.
  • Be responsible for the team practice schedule and all written or verbal communications with team athletes, parents and assistant coaches.
  • Execute the legal duties of a coach by:
    • Providing a safe environment.
    • Properly planning the activity.
    • Evaluating athletes for injury or incapacity.
    • Matching athletes or making sure that athletes who compete against each other are of similar abilities.
    • Providing adequate and proper equipment.
    • Ensuring that training is held in a physically safe environment (having a lifeguard present, etc.).
    • Supervising all activities closely.
    • Knowing emergency procedures and first aid.
    • Keeping adequate records.

Coaching Staff (Formerly Assistant Coach)

Requirements

  • Must be a registered SOTX volunteer [must have a current Class A Volunteer Application on file, must have attended General Orientation and Protective Behaviors (in person or online) and must have passed the criminal background check].
  • Must be at least 15 years of age, with parent signature if under 18 years of age.
  • Must be a mature, reliable individual.
  • Must uphold the idea that competing and winning are secondary to experiencing and participating.
  • Must be a role model exhibiting positive interpersonal relationships, moral values, respect, honesty, trust, fairness and courtesy toward the athletes, coaching staff, volunteers, families, officials and SOTX staff.
  • Must answer directly to the head coach.
  • Must complete Protective Behaviors and submit a new Class A Volunteer Application every three years.
  • Those between the ages of 15-17 should not be placed in positions of authority and cannot be in charge of athletes. They cannot be counted as chaperones in the chaperone to athlete ratio.

Responsibilities

  • Work with the head coach to provide athletes with comprehensive sports training and preparation for local, area, regional and chapter competitions.
  • Assist the head coach with selecting, assessing and training Special Olympics athletes.
    • Selecting – The coaching staff will recruit athletes and properly complete and submit all the required medical and registration materials by the established deadlines.
    • Assessing – The coaching staff will assess each athlete to determine the individual and/or team skill level for training and competition in his or her selected sports.
    • Training – The coaching staff will develop individualized training programs for each athlete. The programs shall include fundamental skill instruction, conditioning and instruction on competition and rules. The training program should be a minimum of eight weeks in duration.
  • Know, understand and abide by the official Special Olympics Sports Rules.
  • Know and understand the sport being coached.
  • Execute the legal duties of a coach by:
    • Providing a safe environment.
    • Properly planning the activity.
    • Evaluating athletes for injury or incapacity.
    • Matching athletes or making sure that athletes who compete against each other are of similar abilities.
    • Providing adequate and proper equipment.
    • Ensuring that training is held in a physically safe environment (having a lifeguard present, etc.).
    • Supervising all activities closely.
    • Knowing emergency procedures and first aid.
    • Keeping adequate records.

Special Responsibilities for Head Coaches/Coaching Staff

Because most chapter and some area events last an entire weekend, it is very important that coaches are adequately prepared to deal with the athletes for an extended period of time. Listed below are some of the necessary and helpful procedures that should simplify the job.

  • The coach is responsible for the athlete 24 hours a day. It is up to the coach to ensure that the physical and emotional needs of the athletes are met during any event or games competition. This responsibility includes, but is not limited to:
    • Ensuring that athletes are properly warmed-up prior to any competition.
    • Taking precautions to prevent any athlete from suffering sunburn and heat exhaustion by using sunscreen, drinking plenty of fluids and taking advantage of shaded areas whenever possible.
    • Bringing a first aid kit and knowing how to administer first aid.
    • Ensuring athletes get adequate rest away from the competition.
    • Ensuring that athletes display appropriate behavior.
    • Ensuring that the athletes eat properly and avoid overeating or missing meals.
      Note: If an athlete requires a special diet, it is the responsibility of the coach to provide for the athlete’s needs. For special diets, bring a cooler with all the proper foods.
  • The coach should be aware of the athlete’s possessions.
  • The coach is expected to be totally familiar with the medical condition, precautions and medication requirements of each athlete. It is the coach’s responsibility to ensure that medication is administered. Knowledge of the medication regimen (what, how much and when) is essential.
  • The coach is expected to carry a copy of the valid Athlete Enrollment/Medical Release Form for each athlete at all times.
  • The coach must ensure that armbands or name tags are worn by athletes and coaching staff at all times.
  • The coach must ensure that the athlete is on time for all sports competitions but also has the opportunity to participate in special activities.
  • The coach is expected to be familiar with Special Olympics Sports Rules. Questions or concerns about sporting events should be addressed to the sport director. Concerns or suggestions about other aspects of the games should be made on the evaluation form provided in the registration packet.
  • No alcoholic beverages are allowed at Special Olympics practices and competitions. Smoking is also prohibited except in designated areas.
  • The head coach is responsible for making sure that the athletes are dressed appropriately for all competitions, including appropriate sports specific undergarments.

Athlete Coach

Requirements

  • See Athletes as Coaches (Section J) for more information.
  • Athlete coaches may perform all of the functions of a coach on the playing field under the supervision of a head coach or head of delegation. Athlete coaches must have an individual without intellectual disabilities present at all practices, competitions and events. This presence is required for all practices and games events.
  • Athlete coaches cannot serve as the head coach, head of delegation or be counted in the chaperone to athlete ratio on the Delegation Entry Form.

Additional Duties Required of All Delegations

Qualified volunteers, parents and family members can and should help the head of the delegation and all coaches by assisting with some of the additional administrative duties described below.

  • Establish and maintain, in one accessible location known to all assistants and coaching staff:
    • A current list of all athlete names, parent names, phone numbers, e-mails and addresses. (This information can be found on the Athlete Enrollment/Medical Release Form. This form must be with the coach who is conducting a practice or traveling and attending a Special Olympics Texas sponsored meet or event.)
    • An accurate inventory and condition description of all equipment, including uniforms (athletes’ and coaches’), specifying sizes and how many of each size.
  • Set up procedures at each location, event or activity designed to:
    • Return equipment to storage (preferably locked, with more than one person knowing where the key(s) are kept).
    • Return rule books and any other SOTX area or chapter-specific information such as the names and phone numbers of key volunteers or mentor coaches.
    • Return and clean uniforms after meets.
  • Set up and maintain the team’s centralized account through the SOTX finance department.
    • Receive donations from SOTX approved fund raisers, businesses and individuals.
    • Deposit all cash and/or checks into a SOTX approved account so that receipts are always trackable.
    • Agree on fund raisers, fill out all applications and get approval from the Vice President of Resource Development (vp_dev.chp@sotx.org).
  • Keep the safety of all athletes at the forefront of your mind to prevent all types of abuse. See Health and Safety (Section I) for guidelines on preventing athletes from ever having to experience physical abuse, emotional abuse and sexual abuse, as well as tips on identifying signs of abuse and reporting abuse.
  • Parents and guardians of athletes traveling and competing at area and local events should be made aware of the following information prior to departure for the games:
    • Who the chaperones are.
    • How the HoD and coaches can be reached.
    • Departure and return information.
    • Where the delegation will be housed.
    • What the sleeping arrangements will be if staying overnight in a hotel or in the dorms.
    • Any additional detail that is relevant to the event.
  • When housing athletes in hotel rooms and in the dorms, it is up to the delegation and its policy to determine the sleeping arrangements while in housing. However, parents must be informed, and the following needs to be taken into consideration:
    • When Special Olympics events require athletes to stay overnight, the gender, age and developmental levels of the athletes should be taken into consideration when making room assignments. Athletes should also be assigned sleeping rooms with athletes of similar size and intellectual functioning. In addition, male and female athletes require separate accommodations as well as need chaperones of their own gender.
    • Parents may act as chaperones for their own children and sleep in the same room as their child, even if the gender is mixed. However, if there is a gender disparity, there may not be any other athletes housed in the same room. Parents acting as chaperones must complete all of the volunteer Class A registration requirements.

Safety Guidelines for All Coaches and Heads of Delegation

When you become a coach, whether you are paid or a volunteer, you assume some legal responsibilities. While we do not want you to become alarmed about the possibility of being named in a lawsuit, we want you to be aware that there are things you need to do to lessen the risk. When coaches are sued, it is most often for negligence.

Negligence – “occurs when you fail to perform a legally owed duty, as would a reasonable and prudent coach, with this failure resulting in actual damage that is a consequence of your breach of duty and that should have been foreseen.”

In many instances, delegations stay in dormitory-style housing while attending Summer Games. Under no circumstances will delegations be allowed to mix genders of athletes while staying in the dorms. Male athletes must stay on one floor while the female athletes stay on another floor. Failure to follow this rule can result in disciplinary measures against the HoD and head coach.

A coach has at least nine important duties:

  1. To provide a safe environment.
  2. To properly plan the activity.
  3. To evaluate athletes for injury or incapacity.
  4. To match athletes of similar abilities to ensure fair competition.
  5. To provide adequate and proper equipment.
  6. To educate on how to safely participate in sports training (no diving into the shallow end of the pool, etc.).
  7. To supervise the activity closely.
  8. To know emergency procedures and first aid.
  9. To keep adequate records.

The following safety guidelines are recommended to help implement legal duties of a coach

  • Establish procedures for accidents and emergencies, including appropriate report forms. Safety rules and regulations should be included and enforced.
  • Establish an adequate plan of supervision and make sure that those assisting are competent to do so.
  • Regularly and thoroughly inspect any facilities, apparatus and equipment. This step is a good form of preventative maintenance.
  • Teach skills in their proper progression and take into account individual variance.
  • Do not force first aid on an athlete if he or she resists. Notify the appropriate personnel if an injury is of a more serious nature (broken bone, severe cut, etc.).
  • Complete a First Report of Accident/Incident Form as soon as possible. Document all injuries.
  • Ensure that your athletes have proper transportation to and from events and practices.
  • Note that waivers often cause coaches to be less diligent in their duties to provide a safe environment, even though the waiver on the Athlete Medical Form provides little, if any, release of liability to coaches.

Information regarding concussions and brain injury

The Centers for Disease Control has created a fact sheet about dealing with concussion and brain injury. Online training regarding Concussion and Sports is available here.

Coaching Athletes

The Special Olympics Coaching Philosophy – Athletes First, Winning Second

As a coach, your attitude toward sports and competition will directly affect your athletes. Special Olympics believes that the athletic experience and the camaraderie shared by teammates is what benefits an athlete the most. Coaches should be aware of how they influence their athletes, and should follow these guidelines in all aspects of their interactions with athletes.

  • Successful coaches help athletes master new skills, enjoy competition with others and feel good about themselves.
  • Successful coaches are not only well-versed in techniques and skills, they know how to teach these skills to people.
  • Successful coaches not only teach athletes the skills of the sport, they also teach and model the skills needed for successful living in society.
  • Successful coaches are those who can learn new skills, who are flexible enough to change old ways when change is needed, who can accept constructive criticism and who are able to critically evaluate themselves.

Coaching Objectives

  • To have fun – both the coaches and the athletes.
  • To help athletes develop:
    • Physically, by learning sports skills and rules, improving physical conditioning, developing good health habits and avoiding injuries.
    • Psychologically, by learning how to control their emotions and develop feelings of self-worth.
    • Socially, by learning how to cooperate in a competitive context and by learning appropriate standards of behavior, including sportsmanship.
  • To cooperate and exercise sound judgment in every decision that affects athletes, coaching staff, volunteers, family members, officials (volunteers and staff) and the organization.
  • To be a positive role model exhibiting good interpersonal relations, moral values, respect, honesty, trust, fairness and courtesy towards the athletes, coaches, volunteers, family members and officials.

With proper leadership, sports programs produce athletes who accept responsibilities, who accept others and, most of all, who accept themselves.

What Makes a Successful Coach?

  • Knowledge of the sport – The more knowledge you have of the basic skills of a sport, and the more you know about teaching these basics in the proper sequence, the more fun you and your athletes will have.
  • Motivation to be a good coach – Possess skills, knowledge and self motivation to help others succeed on and off the field of play.
  • Empathy – The ability to readily understand the thoughts, feelings and emotions of your athletes and convey this to them. Successful coaches possess empathy. They are able to understand athletes’ emotions of joy, frustration, anger and anxiety.
  • Communication – The coach must be able to communicate with athletes, parents and assistant coaches. Everyone works together better when goals and objectives are clear.

Coaching Tips

  • Keep the athletes active.
  • Keep verbal communication brief.
  • Praise the athlete; be specific about what skills you are praising.
  • New skills should be taught at the beginning of the lesson. Do not over-coach; teach just one thing at a time.
  • Be patient. Respect and accept the athlete as an individual.
  • Review for reinforcement.
  • Know your athlete – his or her abilities, interests and goals.
  • Keep all practices short and fun.
  • Choose activities that challenge the individual.
  • Be firm, understanding, organized and imaginative.
  • Set up special awards, such as hardest worker, most improved, etc.
  • Set realistic goals that are meaningful, challenging and attainable.
  • Set a goal at the beginning of each lesson or practice and then evaluate at the end of the orientation as to whether it was achieved. Be positive; there is no room for negative expectations.
  • Plan a fitness program.
  • Be flexible. Have the courage to change methods to better the program.
  • Give the athlete confidence. Use your voice and face to express yourself.
  • Focus on ability, not disability. Emphasize potential, not deficiency. Encourage, don’t discourage.
  • Before you act, remember that you are a focal point on and off the field of play and that your actions, attitudes and words could have a profound influence on the lives of your players and the individuals around you.
  • You set an example. Be a positive role model by exhibiting positive interpersonal relations, high moral values, respect, honesty, trust, fairness and courtesy toward others.

Working with People with Intellectual Disabilities

As a Special Olympics coach, you will be looked up to and held in esteem by the Special Olympics athletes. The Special Olympics athletes will look to you for friendship as well as for coaching guidance. Therefore, we have developed some basic guidelines for working with Special Olympics athletes which may help you in establishing discipline, coaching routines and interpersonal relationships.

The method and manner by which you conduct your program will, in large part, determine your success as a coach. While coaching, approach your athletes enthusiastically. Present the day’s lesson in an enjoyable manner. Remember, Special Olympics athletes return the excitement and enthusiasm transmitted to them by you. There are a variety of things you can do as a planner and instructor to create a positive, acceptable human environment to support learning in a group.

Goals

It is very important that you, as a coach, have certain objectives or goals for the athletes on a daily and weekly basis. On a daily basis, physical conditioning should be stressed. On a seasonal basis, preparation for Special Olympics events might be in order. Specific rewards which motivate productivity are necessary on a year-round basis so that athletes progress and move on to different sports events and activities.

All short-range goals should lead up to the sound development of each athlete. Physically, mentally, socially and emotionally, the long-range goal is the enhancement of each athlete’s self-image.

Discipline

In general, a “firm, but fair” approach is best; the athlete should realize that you are there to impart information as well as to offer guidance. You, therefore, should remain flexible and open-minded in your expectations and demands. This “open-ended” approach helps create a cooperative spirit and a greater desire to perform. Above all, consistency in your expectations for discipline is a key to success.

Physical Conditioning

It is important that you become familiar with the physical abilities of each participant. Then you can carefully plan your training orientations, aiming to help each athlete achieve maximum physical potential. The best way to encourage your athletes to perform is through your demonstration and participation in the activities.

Competition

Special Olympics athletes should be encouraged to compete, above all, with themselves. The key lies in the motivation; therefore, it is up to you to encourage interest by changing activities frequently. This is achieved by not making formal practice orientations too long, and by varying your approaches to the fundamentals and skills you are coaching.

It is important for you to help your athletes keep and review accurate records of their progress. As the athletes gain more and more control over their bodies, records will help them achieve awareness of their progress, which in turn stimulates further interest in competing against themselves.

Reinforcement

Rewards are a good motivation for achievement. Some athletes may respond best to verbal praise and encouragement; others may require more tangible rewards such as stars, ribbons, patches, certificates or medals. The most important tool you can have is knowledge of each athlete’s needs. The spirit of achievement is a fine inducement for continued improvement. Acknowledgment of the efforts of your Special Olympics athletes in the form of rewards or reinforcements helps to bolster their self-image.

Finally, the following teaching suggestions may be helpful to you as you are learning to coach.

Before the Lesson

  • Always plan and understand the lesson thoroughly.
  • Set realistic goals for each athlete.
  • Minimal time should be spent standing or waiting around. Maximize participation of all Special Olympics athletes and available equipment.
  • Always allow for warm-up.

During the Lesson

  • Closely analyze the athlete’s attempts and always provide feedback.
  • RELAX! Attempt to learn the rhythm and style of your team the first day.
  • Be flexible. Adapt instruction to meet the needs of a particular athlete or group.
  • Use confidence builders and motivation. Always attempt to prevent an athlete from encountering repeated failures.
  • Stand and face athletes during instruction (mirroring reverse instruction of left and right).
  • Provide brief and clear instructions.
  • Teach by indirection as well as direction. Athletes are great imitators; be a good model.
  • Allow the athlete plenty of time to become familiar with one skill before teaching another skill. Introduce one or two skills per practice orientation.
  • Always point out the positive before correcting, “Bill, you did well clearing the bar, but if you approach the bar at this angle . . .”
  • Be firm.
  • Be consistent.
  • Follow through with any warnings you may give.
  • Devote a part of each training period to vigorous activity.
  • Participate in the activity with the athletes. Stay active.
  • Individualize your instruction.
  • Repetition and practice are the keys to success. Overlearn.
  • Passive manipulation. Physical assistance is often needed to ensure proper learning.
  • Don’t expect immediate results in skill learning – practice patience, patience and more patience.

Visit www.sotx.org for additional coaching tips.
A calendar of upcoming trainings by area can be found at www.sotx.org/calendar.

Sample 8-Session Training Plan

Each individual entering a Special Olympics Texas competition shall participate in at least eight sessions of training and preliminary competition before the culminating event. This plan must include at least one local competition or two scrimmages. The suggested guidelines listed below follow 90-minute training sessions. These are minimum standards. Athletes will benefit from more frequent training and/or additional competition opportunities when possible.

Preseason, you will need to recruit athletes, complete the Athlete Enrollment/Medical Release Forms, plan and complete coaching staff and family meetings, as well as plan uniform and equipment purchases.

Session 1 Session 2 Session 3 Session 4
Orientation (10 minutes) Welcome (5 minutes) Welcome (5 minutes) Welcome (5 minutes)
Warm Up (15 minutes) Warm Up (10 minutes) Warm Up (10 minutes) Warm Up (10 minutes)
Skill Development (30 minutes) Skills Test/Preliminary Scores (60 minutes) New Skills (15 minutes) New Skills (15 minutes))
Scrimmage/Trial (15 minutes) Conditioning (10 minutes) Skill Development (30 minutes) Skill Development (15 minutes)
Conditioning (15 minutes) Closing/Cool Down (5 minutes) Scrimmage/Trial (15 minutes) Scrimmage/Trial (30 minutes)
Closing/Cool Down (5 minutes)   Conditioning (10 minutes) Conditioning (10 minutes)
    Closing/Cool Down (5 minutes) Closing/Cool Down (5 minutes)
 
Session 5 Session 6 Session 7 Session 8
Welcome (5 minutes) Welcome (5 minutes) Welcome (5 minutes) Welcome (5 minutes)
Warm Up (10 minutes) Warm Up (10 minutes) Warm Up (10 minutes) Warm Up (10 minutes)
Competition (70 minutes) New Skills (15 minutes) Competition (70 minutes) Skills (15 minutes))
Closing/Cool Down (5 minutes) Skill Development (15 minutes) Closing/Cool Down (5 minutes) Scrimmage/Trial (30 minutes)
  Conditioning (10 minutes)   Scrimmage/Trial (30 minutes)
  Closing/Cool Down (5 minutes)   Closing/Cool Down (5 minutes)

Section F:
Coach Education System

Contact the Director of Program Training to assess personal sport experience and knowledge and option to receive level 1 coach certification through the completion of the online Coaching Special Olympics Athletes training course. Teh Director of Program Training can be contact by email, dir_progtrg.chp@sotx.org or by phone 512.491.2940.

Coaching Special Olympics Athletes Course

Options for Level 2 and Level 3 Coach Certifications:

After Level 1 certification, one can choose to take the Principles of Coaching course or Tactics course in either order. The coach will be recognized as a Level 2 coach after they complete the second course (Principles of Coaching or Tactics).

In addition to face to face training courses, there are online training opportunities for coaches to become certified. Note: a SIG Instructional Session is required for all new SOTX online users.

New Coach SIG Training:

This 30-minute FREE training covers the SIG instructional piece for new SOTX Coaches as part of the Coach certification requirement to complete Level 1 certification. The training is based upon the SOTX Information Guide, which contains important information about the policies and procedures, sports rules, fundraising guidelines, financial requirements and communication strategies for Special Olympics Texas. The training is divided into ten different sections and separated with learning quizzes throughout. New Coaches accessing online training(s) must complete this training as part of the certification requirement. New Coaches attending face to face training(s) will receive the SIG instruction piece at the face to face training. Start training now!/p>

Training

Coach Education System - Training and Certification

Coach education is vital because coaches are so influential in the development of Special Olympics athletes. Special Olympics Texas places great emphasis on coaching education and training, and has made a commitment to coaching excellence. Coaches play an indispensable role in Special Olympics, and coaching education helps to ensure each coach and athlete has the best sport experience possible.

General Orientation Training, Protective Behaviors Training and Concussion in Sports Training

The first step toward certification is to attend the General Orientation training and the Protective Behaviors training. General Orientation will provide you with an overview of the Special Olympics mission and philosophy, intellectual disabilities and eligibility, sports opportunities, and rules.

Protective Behaviors offers guidelines that are designed to protect athletes, volunteers and staff by providing information on types of abuse and how to prevent emotional, sexual and physical abuse of athletes. Concussion in Sports Training is to help raise awareness and help minimize the risk of concussions. General Orientation, Protective Behaviors and Concussion in Sports Training are necessary for all who are interested in working with Special Olympics Texas athletes.

Online Sports Information Guide (SIG) Training

A SIG Instructional Session is required for all new SOTX coaches. This online training is required for all new SOTX online users to complete Level 1 certification. The training is based upon the Sports Information Guide, which contains important information about the policies and procedures, sports rules, fundraising guidelines, financial requirements and communication strategies of Special Olympics Texas.

Level 1 Coach – Option A: Sport Skills Course and SIG Instructional Course

This course is offered for those interested in coaching who have not competed or coached at a high school, university or equivalent level. Sport specific trainings are available for each sport offered in the area. The skills course focuses on the basic skills and strategies of the sport, fundamental skills development for the athletes, as well as, competition and game understanding. The skills course includes a classroom session, an activity session performing the skills with the trainer and clinician, and a model training session with athletes.

Level 1 Coach – Option B: Coaching Special Olympics Athletes Course and SIG Instructional Course

This course is designed for the new coach with sport experience and the veteran Special Olympics coach looking to improve his or her training and coaching skills. This course involves four sections: the athlete, the coach, training and coaching each athlete, and successfully preparing for competition.

Principles of Coaching Course

This course builds upon the foundation established in the Level 1 Special Olympics training school. This course is non-sport specific and seeks to expand more of the sport sciences. It addresses the basic principles of coaching, coaching philosophy, planning and coaching administration, fitness and conditioning, and safety and risk management. This course is open to all coaches who are interested in advancing their coaching knowledge.

Tactics Course

This sport-specific course focuses on the development of higher-level sport skills, game or event tactics and strategies, expanded skill instruction, and enhancement of athlete performance. This course builds on the coach’s sport knowledge acquired in the Level 1 training. This training is open to all coaches who are interested in advancing their coaching knowledge.

Level 4 Coach – Comprehensive Coach Mentor Course

This course will teach a coach how to guide, assist, support and train a new coach to SOTX or an athlete coach going through the coaching program in the assimilation and improvement of the skills necessary to become a fully effective Special Olympics Texas coach.

There is an application process for this training. The application is sport-specific. The applicant must have completed Level 1, Principles of Coaching and Tactics courses. The applicant must have the Tactics certification for 2 of the required 4 years as a certified coach before applying for Level 4. One must apply for Level 4 coach training in the same sport that they received their Tactics certification. Contact your program/area director for the Level 4 application.

Upon completion of the Comprehensive Coach Mentor Course, you will work through the sport season with the athlete or coach you are mentoring in the sport. Complete the Mentor Log and mail it to your program/area director.

Sports Training Program

Sports training and competitions are the heart of the Special Olympics program. Coaches, officials, and games and competition directors play key roles in providing the athletes with the best sport experience possible. Special Olympics Texas provides a comprehensive program designed to ensure that the participation of athletes is safe, enjoyable and productive. Experienced and knowledgeable instructors will provide the resources you need.

Why become certified?

  • Promote the mission of Special Olympics Texas.
  • Provide your athletes with the safest and most effective training sessions possible.
  • Enhance your coaching skills.
  • Keep up-to-date regarding current rules and training techniques.
  • Ensure coaching consistency worldwide.
  • Demonstrate program credibility.
  • Protect yourself against liability.

Training clinics are available at local, area, regional and chapter levels for:

  • Athletes
  • Coaches
  • Games and competition directors
  • Officials
  • Area training directors/managers

Depending on your background and experience, different options are available to become certified. Please contact your area office or the chapter office for more information.

Continuing Education

In keeping with the commitment to coaching excellence, Special Olympics Texas recommends that each coach attend a Special Olympics course or Continuing Education course, so they can share new coaching practices and techniques and to express new ideas. Examples of courses are listed below:

  • Sport-Specific Workshops or Seminars
  • First Aid
  • CPR
  • CPI Training
  • Crisis Communication Training
  • American Sport Education Program (ASEP)
  • Officials Training; Rules and Updates
  • National Federation of High School Association

National Governing Body Courses; other sports organizations’ coaching courses. For more information, contact your area office or the Director of Program Training at 800.876.5646, ext. 2940.

Online Training Opportunities

The following information and links can be found at www.sotx.org/onlinetraining.

The following courses can be taken in the preference of your own setting and schedule. The courses are all delivered through demonstrative videos and a series of PDF downloads. SOTX will not cover any course registration fee.

Special Olympics North America has partnered with American Sport Education Program (ASEP), United States Bowling Congress, National Federation of High Schools (NFHS) and West Virginia University Continuing Education (WVU) to offer online courses. These courses are for Special Olympics Coaches who are seeking advanced training or continuing education.

Level 1 Coaches may take ASEP’s Coaching Youth [Sport] courses in the respective sport to become a Level 2 or 3 certified Coach. You can choose to take the online Principles of Coaching course or Tactics course in either order. A coach will be recognized as a Level 2 coach after they complete the second course, either Principles of Coaching or Tactics. The coach will then be recognized as a Level 3 coach after they complete the third course, either Principles of Coaching or Tactics.

For more information, contact your area office or the Director of Program Training at 800.876.5646, ext. 2940.

Coaching Special Olympics Athletes

This 3-hour course is offered through American Sports Education Program for $16.95. It is a great course for new coaches in preparation for their first Special Olympics coaching role. This course prepares coaches to use their sport-specific knowledge in coaching athletes with intellectual disabilities. The course is made up of four different units: the Athlete, Teaching and Training the Athlete, the Coach-preparing for and coaching during Competition and Managing the Program. For veteran Special Olympics coaches, this course serves as a reminder of the essentials sometimes forgotten after years of coaching.

This course is equivalent to the classroom Level 1 – Coaching Special Olympics Athletes Course.

www.asep.com/asep_content/org/SONA.cfm

Coaching Basketball, Aquatics, Golf, Soccer, Softball, Volleyball, Track & Field, and Tennis

These 3-hour courses are offered through National Federation of State High Schools Associations for $50.00 -$75.00. These sport specific courses are recommended for those coaches who lack sport specific knowledge. Each course focuses on the basic skills, strategies and fundamentals in athlete development. Course units include basic competition levels and game fundamentals for each sport.

These courses are equivalent to the classroom Level 1 – Sport Skills Course.

www.nfhslearn.com

Coaching Unified Sports

This 90-minute course is FREE offered through National Federation of State High School Associations. This course caters to both new and veteran coaches seeking continuing education. Unified Sports is an inclusive sports program that unites Special Olympics athletes and partners as teammates for training and competition. This course is based upon meaningful involvement for all team members and founded on Three Unified Programs: Unified Sports, Player Development and Unified Recreation. Coaches will learn how to build a successful team by the recruitment and assessment process and appropriate sport selection for athletes and partners. Please know, an individual will not be recognized as a Unified Sports Coach until completion of a Level 1 Sport Skills course; however, the sessions can be taken out of order.

This course is equivalent to the classroom Level 1 - Unified Sports course.

www.nfhslearn.com

Principles of Coaching Special Olympics Athletes

This 9-hour course is offered through West Virginia Continuing Education for $35.00. Coaches who have completed a Sport Specific Skills or Coaching Special Olympics Athletes Course may take this course to maintain or upgrade certification in their respective sports. This non-sport specific course is based on the sciences of successful coaching. This course is made up of five different units: Understanding the Special Olympics Philosophy, Sports Planning for the Coach, Coaching Sport Skills and Developing Sport Confidence, Sport-Specific Performance Training and Nutrition for Special Olympics Athletes, and Sport Safety and Risk Management.

This course is equivalent to the classroom POC course.

www.continuinged.wvu.edu

Coaching Youth Basketball, Volleyball, Softball, Soccer and Tennis

These 3-hour courses are offered through American Sports Education Program for $19.95 each. Coaches who have completed a Sport Specific Skills or Coaching Special Olympics Athletes Course may take any of these Coaching Youth Sport Courses to maintain or upgrade certification in their respective sports. These courses are for coaching athletes age 14 and under participating in a recreational, noncompetitive setting. Coaches will gain sport-specific skills and essential coaching concepts for youth sports. These sport-specific courses are based on tactic and skill instruction, coach responsibilities, effective communication, safety and fitness, rules and practice planning during season.

These courses are equivalent to the classroom Tactics course.

www.asep.com/asep_content/org/SONA.cfm

Coaching Bowling

This 3-hour course is offered through United States Bowling Congress for $49.00. This is an entry level course for a new or veteran Special Olympics Coach seeking bowling certification. Coaches will learn basic fundamentals, sport safety and progression of skills from two-handed delivery to the basic four-step approach. Before taking this course, all users must first be approved through USBC’s Registered Volunteer Program. Once approved through the RVP, the user will be given access to purchase the course. Youth must be 13 years of age or older to take this course.

Prior to being given access to purchase the test coaches that are U.S. citizens 18 and older must go through the USBC background screening process - The Registered Volunteer Program

To access the USBC presentation and testing site, follow these instructions:

  1. Go to www.BOWL.com/coaching
  2. Select the USBC Coaching Resource Center
  3. Select the Level I Program
  4. Read all the information. The Level I presentation and a pdf of the script for presentation are accessible by using the link(s) in the last paragraph.
  5. At the conclusion of the presentation, read all the information on the last slide. Once an account is created on the test site, answer only one survey question that pertains to you. You only need to answer once.
  6. The coaching department will receive the response from the survey question via email and will reply back as soon as the required information is verified by a staff member; this may take a few days due to the volume of requests coming in.

Online Certification Procedures

Once a course is complete, the user will receive an online course certification. Please forward a copy of the online course certificate to your Area Director and/or the Director of Program Training at dir_progtrg.chp@sotx.org. 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, the online SIG instructional course will need to be taken to complete certification. Submit your course completion certificate to your area office. Once your form is processed, you will receive an official SOTX Coach Card and become a certified SOTX Coach!

Prerequisites before completing online courses if new to SOTX:

  1. Complete the Special Olympics General Orientation
  2. Complete the Special Olympics Protective Behaviors training
  3. Complete the Class A Volunteer Form
  4. Complete the Online SIG Instructional Course
  5. Complete the Concussion in Sports training

Requirements for All Trainers and Officials

All trainers and officials must be registered SOTX Class A volunteers [must have a current Class A Volunteer Application on file, must have attended General Orientation and Protective Behaviors Trainings (in person or online) and must have passed the criminal background check]. The Protective Behaviors Training must be completed and a new Class A Volunteer Application must be submitted every three years. Annually, trainers must attend the Area Conference.

Competition Director Training

The competition director’s training is for people conducting competition within a specific sport. People attending this training will learn how to manage the responsibilities of the competition director through teamwork, communication and proper planning. The training includes units on general competition, team or individual sports, and sport-specific competition. Those interested attend an eight hour training school. Certification is valid indefinitely under the following conditions:

  • The certified individual remains active in planning and coordinating local, area, regional or chapter-level competitions.
  • The certified individual attends the area conference annually.

Competition Director Responsibilities

  • Report to the games director or staff liaison.
  • Ensure that all the needs of his or her sport-specific venue are met by working with and coordinating activities with other venue directors and committee members.
  • Understand the sports rules and procedures of his or her venue.
  • Recruit, train and assign volunteers to fill “key” roles.
  • Ensure that officials are recruited and trained, and are appropriate to the venue and abilities of the athletes.
  • Ensure safety for all athletes and spectators.
  • Provide venue information to the competition committee and coaches in a timely manner.
  • Ensure that equipment needs are met.
  • Attend the local area conference to share competition rules, policies, etc.
  • Perform other duties as needed.

Games Management Training

The Games Management Training is for people chosen by their respective program/area director who conduct local, area, regional or chapter games. People attending this training will learn how to manage the responsibilities of the games director through teamwork, communication and proper planning. The training includes units on selecting a management team, committee management, event venue management, rules committees and how to coordinate special events. Those interested attend a ten-hour training school. Certification is valid indefinitely under the following conditions:

  • The certified individual remains active in planning and coordinating local, area, regional or chapter-level competitions.

Games Director Responsibilities

  • Serve as the chief administrator and manager by carrying out the policies and procedures established by Special Olympics Texas.
  • Oversee the overall operation and function of all divisions of the games organization.
  • Delegate games-related responsibilities, in good management practice, to the various committee chairs and subcommittees.
  • Inspire and direct division chairs and subcommittees.
  • Call all meetings of the games management team for instruction and status review, and ensure that all directors are properly trained and informed of their responsibilities.
  • Exhibit consistent leadership skills, effective management, an ability to relate to other volunteers, an ability to stimulate community involvement and the ability to represent Special Olympics Texas in a responsible and dignified manner.
  • Report to the Special Olympics program staff liaison (the program/area director or the Director of Competition and Games).
  • Perform other duties as needed.

Instructor Training for Unified Sports® and MATP

Unified Sports® Trainer

An individual interested in becoming a Unified Sports® trainer must be a certified Unified Sports® coach and attend the Unified Sports® Trainer Training.

The Unified Sports® trainer will assist the area training director and program/area director with Unified Sports® trainings and programs.

The Unified Sports® trainer will conduct at least one Unified Sports® training school annually.

The Unified Sports® trainer will maintain certification by attending the training manager recertification and the area conference.

MATP Trainer

An individual interested in becoming a MATP trainer must be a certified MATP coach and attend the MATP Trainer Training.

The MATP trainer will assist the area training director and program/area director with MATP trainings and programs.

The MATP trainer will conduct at least one MATP training school annually.

The MATP trainer will maintain certification by attending the training manager recertification.

Officials Training Program

In order to improve the quality of local, area and chapter competitions, an officials training and certification program should be conducted at every competition. Officials in all sports will have the opportunity to become a certified Special Olympics official by attending an approved training clinic of one, two or six hours conducted by the area training director/manager.

The Athletes as Officials program is also offered to Special Olympics athletes who want to further their skills and become certified officials through an officials mentoring program.

All certified officials must be a registered SOTX volunteer [must have a current Class A Volunteer Application on file, must have attended General Orientation and Protective Behaviors (in person or online), completed concussion in sports training every three years, and must have passed the criminal background check].

Area Training Director/Manager Certification

Special Olympics Texas conducts a training school (the Train the Trainer course) for new area training directors and training managers. Individuals selected by their program/area director will be trained to coordinate all aspects of the area training program, including conducting coaches and officials training schools.

Those interested in becoming a trainer for Special Olympics Texas must first attend a coaches training in any sport. This training is a prerequisite and will assist with the proper instruction necessary to become a new trainer for SOTX.

Area training directors maintain their trainer’s certification by attending the annual training director’s recertification through the Director of Program Training. Area training managers recertify annually through their area training director. Recertification will be verified by the chapter Director of Program Training.

Area Training Director Responsibilities

  • Serve on an area management team and keep them apprised of all training for volunteers and athletes.
  • Work with the program/area director to recruit and train an area training team (area training managers).
  • Assist the program/area director to coordinate the area training schools, which includes:
    • Helping to identify the types of training schools to be offered for the program year and the dates.
    • Assisting in the selection and training of all personnel.
    • Helping to secure facilities and equipment.
    • Helping to recruit sport-specific clinicians for training schools.
    • Assisting in the effort to communicate training school opportunities to physical educators, special educators, institutional staff, recreation specialists, family members, group home operators, sheltered workshop staff, members of civic and service organizations and affiliated sports organizations in advance of the date it is scheduled.
    • Assisting with the annual area conference (coaches recertification).
  • Help the program/area director identify all of the programs serving people with intellectual disabilities in the area.
  • Support the program/area director’s efforts to identify contacts in each program who will disseminate training information to prospective coaches and athletes.
  • Review entries for the area competitions with the program/area director. Concerns can then be addressed at future training schools where emphasis can be placed on how to complete the Delegation and Athlete Entry Forms.

Area Training Manager Job Description and Qualifications

The area training manager is responsible for:

  • Demonstrating abilities in public speaking and group dynamics.
  • Assisting the area training director and the program/area director in all aspects of the training plan: developing a training calendar, helping secure facilities and equipment, helping recruit sport-specific clinicians, assisting in identifying programs serving individuals with intellectual disabilities, and assisting in the effort to communicate training school opportunities.
  • Conducting two training schools with an experienced trainer before conducting a training school on their own. If an area training manager is a certified coach and attended two training schools in the past year, he/she is required to perform only one training school with an experienced trainer prior to conducting a training school on his/her own.
  • Conducting two training schools as the lead trainer or working with the training team on a multi-sport training exposition. This requirement is area driven and will be determined by the number of trainers available and the number of sports offered.
  • Reviewing entries for the area competitions with the area training director and the program/area director. Concerns can then be addressed at future training schools where emphasis can be placed on how to complete the Delegation and Athlete Entry Forms.
  • Assisting with the annual area conference (coaches recertification).

Motor Activities Training Program

The Motor Activities Training Program (MATP) is designed for people with severe disabilities whose physical and/or behavioral limitations preclude participation in team or individual sports in traditional Special Olympics competitions.

The training period is set by the certified coaches. It can be as short as eight weeks or as long as several months. Emphasis is on training and participation rather than competition. The program utilizes goals, short-term objectives, task-analyzed activities, assessments and teaching/coaching suggestions for individualizing motor activity instruction so that people with severe disabilities can participate in appropriate recreational activities geared to their ability levels. This training and participation is done on site (e.g., schools and large residential facilities). After completion of a training program, a MATP Challenge Day can be held and special MATP Challenge medals awarded to all participants. These medals do not denote first, second or third place. Athletes may train year-round, because there is not a designated season.

The MATP has been designed to comply with the IDEA (Individuals with Disabilities Education Act) requirements of public law 101-476. Each of the activities has been task-analyzed by physical educators, physical therapists and recreational specialists who successfully teach individuals with severe disabilities. In school settings, this program can help physical education teachers integrate students with severe disabilities into regular physical education classes in activities including warm-ups, conditioning, gymnastics and athletics. Instructors are encouraged to integrate students into sports through the use of partial participation and game modifications. Coaches must complete the certification process to begin training. Training programs are conducted at state schools and other facilities throughout Texas with much success. This program may be adapted to allow all eligible athletes the opportunity to participate.

The MATP will introduce athletes with severe disabilities to age-appropriate and functionally- appropriate motor and sport activities. These activities include:

  • Mobility – leading to gymnastics
  • Dexterity – leading to athletics
  • Striking – leading to softball
  • Kicking – leading to soccer
  • Manual wheelchair – leading to athletics
  • Aquatics – leading to swimming

Also included in the Motor Activities Training Guide (available from the area office) are a number of sections relating to handling and positioning, sensory awareness, group games, behavior modification and a model training plan. Those interested in becoming a certified MATP coach must attend a three-hour training school. Certification is valid indefinitely under the following conditions:

  • The certified individual remains active in coaching athletes in MATP.

Motor Activities Training Program Director

Contact for Questions:

Barbara Kielaszek
6606 Barbarella Court
Houston, TX 77088

Day: 713.917.3565

Night: 281.445.6951

E-mail: barbarakielaszek@gmail.com

Specialized Equipment

Flaghouse

Special Populations
601 Flaghouse Drive
Hasbrouck Heights, NJ 07604

800.793.7900

www.flaghouse.com

BSN Sports

P. O. Box 7726
Dallas, TX 75209

800.527.7510

www.bsnsports.com


Section G:
General Policies

To provide the most enjoyable, beneficial and challenging activities for athletes with intellectual disabilities, Special Olympics operates in accordance with the following policies. The General Rules and the Sports Rules are specifically designed to enforce these policies.

  1. Special Olympics training and competition is open to every person with intellectual disabilities who is at least 8 years of age and who registers to participate in Special Olympics as required by the General Rules. People are eligible for Special Olympics provided that they are 2 years of age or older. People ages 2 through 7 are considered Athletes in Training and can participate in Young Athletes (see Athletes in Training (Section B) for more details). There is no maximum age limitation for participation in Special Olympics. An accredited program may permit children who are at least 6 years old to participate in age-appropriate Special Olympics training programs offered by that accredited program, or in specific (and age-appropriate) cultural or social activities offered during the course of a Special Olympics event. Such children may be recognized for their participation in such training or other activities through certificates of participation, or through other types of recognition approved by SOI that are not associated with participation in Special Olympics competition. However, no child may participate in a Special Olympics competition (or be awarded medals or ribbons associated with competition) before his or her eighth birthday.
  2. Special Olympics must offer full participation at the area level for every athlete regardless of his/her economic circumstances.
  3. Special Olympics is an athlete-centered movement and believes that the athlete is all important. Promoting athletes as the central focus of each training or competition program or event, developing the physical, social, psychological and intellectual qualities of the participants, and providing meaningful opportunities for participation in additional activities that support Special Olympics programming, must be the focus of every accredited program.
  4. Special Olympics encourages coaches and family members of athletes to make every effort to encourage Special Olympics athletes to reach their highest level of athletic achievement in a particular sport and to provide opportunities for them to do so.
  5. Each accredited program shall offer comprehensive year-round sports training conducted by qualified coaches in accordance with these Sports Rules. Every Special Olympics athlete who competes in a Special Olympics sport at a game or a tournament must be trained in that sport. Training shall include physical conditioning and nutrition education. Athletes who desire to compete at local, area or state levels must train for at least eight consecutive weeks in the appropriate sport and must have several opportunities to compete (including scrimmages and practice sessions) during that period. Athletes desiring to compete in National Invitational Tournaments, National and/or World Games must qualify by competing in the desired sport(s) in the prior year's state competitions.
  6. Every accredited program must offer a variety of sports events and activities that are appropriate to the age and ability of each athlete, consistent with the program’s accreditation level, and that foster full participation by each eligible athlete regardless of level of ability, degree of mental or physical disability, or economic circumstances.
  7. Every program must, if required by its accreditation level, include Special Olympics Unified Sports® training and competition in which individuals with and without intellectual disabilities participate together on teams, and the Motor Activities Training Program for individuals with such severe intellectual disabilities that they cannot benefit from standard Special Olympics training and competition programs.
  8. Special Olympics encourages qualified athletes to participate in school, club and community programs where they can train and compete in regular sports activities. The athletes may, at this point, wish to leave Special Olympics or continue to take part in Special Olympics activities as well. The decision rests with the athlete.
  9. Special Olympics fully supports the concept of developing sports events for athletes with intellectual disabilities in conjunction with events conducted by sports organizations for individuals without intellectual disabilities. Accredited programs should encourage other amateur and professional sports programs to include demonstrations by Special Olympics athletes as part of their major events. In addition, accredited programs should work with other sports organizations to develop sports events in which Special Olympics athletes may compete with individuals who do not have intellectual disabilities, under circumstances that offer Special Olympics athletes realistic opportunities to excel and compete successfully, whether by participating in the same heats as all athletes or in heats organized specifically for Special Olympics athletes. Special Olympics personnel should work to create a feasible format for these integrated activities.
  10. All Special Olympics sports training and competition activities and events shall be conducted in accordance with Article 1 of the General Rules, Official Sports Rules, and the other uniform standards. Each accredited program shall offer sports training and competition programs that meet the highest possible standards in facilities and equipment, athletic attire, training, coaching, officiating, administration and related events for athletes and their families. Special Olympics sports training and competitions must be held in a manner that protects the participating athletes, provides fair and equitable conditions of competition, and promotes uniformity in testing athletic skills, so that no competitor obtains an unfair advantage over another.
  11. Special Olympics believes that every athlete deserves an equal chance to excel during competition. Thus, each competition division within a given event must be structured so that every athlete/team in the division has a reasonable chance to excel during competition. This must be done by placing athletes/teams in divisions according to accurate records of previous performance or trial heats and, when relevant, grouping by age and gender.
  12. Special Olympics seeks to promote the spirit of sportsmanship and a love of participation for its own sake by stressing and celebrating the importance of, and personal achievement associated with, each athlete’s participation and personal effort in Special Olympics, regardless of comparative ability. Special Olympics believes that every athlete should participate to his/her fullest potential. This means that in team sports, each coach must see that each athlete has frequent opportunities to participate.
  13. All Special Olympics games and competitions - at the local, state, provincial, national and international levels - shall reflect the values, standards, traditions, ceremonies and activities embodied in the ancient and modern Olympic movement, broaden and enrich to celebrate the physical and spiritual qualities of people with intellectual disabilities so as to enhance their dignity and self-esteem.
  14. At National and U.S. Program competitions, Regional Games, World Games and other Special Olympics Games, official medals shall be presented to first, second and third place winners. Athletes in fourth through eighth place shall receive ribbons with all appropriate ceremonies. Those who are disqualified (for reasons other than unsportsman-like conduct or violations of the divisioning rules) or do not finish an event shall be given a participation ribbon. For competitions below the accredited program level (e.g., at the area level), ribbons or a combination of medals and ribbons may be awarded.
  15. Special Olympics training and competition activities must take place in public, with every effort made to attract spectators and generate coverage by the news media, in order to increase public awareness and support for the need and to exhibit the capabilities of people with intellectual disabilities.
  16. Special Olympics shall offer every athlete multiple opportunities annually to participate in locally based competitions in official sports and nationally popular sports in which he/she is interested. These activities should include competitions with teams or individuals other than those with whom the athlete usually trains. Each accredited program must offer competition opportunities in at least the number of official sports and/or nationally popular sports required by the accreditation criteria for that program’s accreditation level. In addition, in order to give athletes broader opportunities, area, state, provincial, regional, national and international competitions as well as tournaments shall be subject to available resources and be open to athletes representing the full range of skill levels.
  17. Special Olympics is not designed to train elite athletes exclusively, but does provide training and competition for highly skilled and elite athletes with intellectual disabilities. Fair and equitable methods should be used to select athletes for participation in non-local competitions so that every athlete, regardless of skill level, has an equal opportunity to participate in each competition at his/her skill level.
  18. Although Special Olympics is a sports training and competition movement, accredited programs may offer or cooperate with others who offer, as an adjunct to or integral part of Special Olympics Games, a full range of artistic, social and cultural experiences such as dances, art exhibits, concerts, visits to historic sites, clinics, theatrical and motion picture performances and similar activities.
  19. All Special Olympics training and competition must be conducted under the auspices of an organization specifically accredited and sanctioned by SOI to conduct Special Olympics programs.
  20. To the greatest extent possible, Special Olympics activities should be organized by and involve local volunteers, from school and college age individuals to senior citizens, from civic clubs to businesses, in order to create greater opportunities for public understanding of and participation with people with intellectual disabilities.
  21. The families of Special Olympics athletes are encouraged to play an active role in their community Special Olympics programs, to share in the training of their athletes, and to assist in the public education effort needed to create greater understanding of the purposes of Special Olympics as well as the emotional, physical, social and spiritual needs of people with intellectual disabilities.
  22. Special Olympics recognizes the contributions and encourages the participation of other organizations such as a schools, parks and recreation departments, institutions caring for people with intellectual disabilities and independent living centers, which conduct sports training for individuals with intellectual disabilities. Accredited Special Olympics programs should encourage such organizations to train athletes in accordance with Special Olympics rules to facilitate the athletes' participation in Special Olympics competitions.

Commercial Messages

Commercial Messages on Athlete Uniforms and Competition Numbers:

In order to avoid commercial exploitation of persons with intellectual disabilities, no uniforms, and no bibs or other signs bearing competition numbers, which are worn by Special Olympics athletes during any competition or during any opening or closing ceremonies of any Games may be emblazoned with commercial names or commercial messages. The only commercial markings which may be displayed on athletes' uniforms during Games competitions and opening and closing ceremonies are the normal commercial markings of the manufacturer. For purposes of this Section 4.08(a), "normal commercial markings" are limited to the following:

  1. On larger clothing items, such as shirts, jackets, pants, jerseys, and sweatshirts, one logo or commercial name per clothing item is permissible, if that name or logo display does not exceed an area of six square inches or 38.7 square centimeters (such as display measuring 2" x 3" or 5.08 cm x 7.62 cm);
  2. On small clothing items, such as caps, socks, hats, gloves and belts, one logo or commercial name per clothing item is permissible, if that name or display does not exceed an area of three square inches or 19.35 square centimeters; and
  3. On athletic shoes, no logos or commercial names are permissible except for names or logos which are included by the manufacturer on athletic shoes which are sold to the general public.

Commercial Markings on Other Athlete apparel or Accessories:

Special Olympics athletes who are not engaged in competition or in opening/closing ceremonies may wear, carry or use at Games venues other than the sites of competition (such as at training or practice sessions) clothing and/or non-apparel items which are not part of their sports equipment (such as tote bags), which contain small and attractively designed identifications of corporate or organizational sponsors.

The aforementioned rules apply to Special Olympics games and competitions because of the relationship which Special Olympics has with the U.S. Olympic Committee. However, because of the voluntary nature of most Special Olympics games organizing committees, the following are rules to be followed at all Special Olympics competitions:

    • Volunteers and officials may wear jackets, T-shirts, caps and other apparel bearing small and attractively designed identifications of corporate or organizational sponsors, at sports venues.
    • Athletes not in competition and not at sports venues (e.g., at training sessions, practices, trips or away from competition sites) may wear apparel bearing small and attractively designed identifications of corporate or organizational sponsors.
    • Athletes may carry and use non-apparel and non-sports equipment items, such as tote bags, bearing small and attractively designed identifications of corporate or organizational sponsors.
    • Opening and closing ceremonies sites are deemed to have the same status as sports venues during games. Hence, team or delegation members and officials shall not wear warm-up suits, jackets, caps, etc., which bear corporate or organizational identifications which might be considered as advertising.

Gun and Weapons Policy

To the fullest extent permitted by law, Special Olympics Texas prohibits concealed handguns and open carry of handguns, and all weapons (other types of guns, knives, etc.) at all Special Olympics Texas practices, competitions, offices, events and functions.

Sexual Harassment

All Special Olympics Texas employees, coaches, volunteers and athletes are expected to treat each other with dignity and respect. Special Olympics Texas will not tolerate any form of sexual harassment.

Sexual harassment is defined as any unwelcome sexual conduct that 1) creates an intimidating, hostile or offensive work environment; 2) interferes with the performance of any employee, coach, volunteer or athlete, even if no tangible or economic damages result; and 3) is used as a basis for a decision such as hiring, terminating, promoting, assigning responsibilities, making opportunities available or increasing/decreasing compensation or benefits.

For more detailed information on SOTX’s sexual harassment policy, please consult SOTX’s Employee Handbook. A copy of this manual is available for viewing at each area office, or through the chapter office.

Guidelines for Consumption of Alcoholic Beverages

The purpose of this policy is to define the very limited parameters by which Special Olympics Texas activities may include consumption or availability of alcoholic beverages. Special Olympics Texas recognizes that the safety and well-being of the athletes, volunteers and staff are of utmost priority, and that the consumption of alcoholic beverages may compromise a person’s ability to care for another’s well-being. Therefore, the consumption of alcoholic beverages is strictly regulated so as to ensure the safety and well-being of all people. Special Olympics Texas also recognizes that the athletes, coaches, volunteers and employees of Special Olympics Texas may serve as role models in their communities. As role models, the athletes, coaches, volunteers and employees must exhibit Olympic ideals and values and be aware of how their behavior may influence others.

Special Olympics Texas recognizes that the responsible consumption of alcoholic beverages may be an optional component at a very limited number of official receptions or fund raising events. Special Olympics Texas expects all such situations to be conducted in the spirit of moderation and mature judgment. The reputation and future success of the entire Special Olympics Texas program can be affected by the judgment used in such situations. Accidents or injuries resulting from irresponsible alcohol consumption may create a liability for the organization as well as the individuals involved.

For more detailed information on SOTX’s policy on guidelines for consumption of alcoholic beverages, please consult SOTX’s Employee Handbook, available for viewing at each area office or at the chapter office.

Animal/Pet Policy

Only certified service animals are allowed at SOTX practices or competitions for safety reasons. Under the Americans With Disabilities Act, service animals must perform a specific task to aid people with disabilities, such as guiding the blind or alerting the hard of hearing. Certain mental illnesses can qualify, such as post-traumatic stress. Dogs who are providing emotional support are considered therapy dogs and are not provided the same legal privileges as service dogs. Law enforcement will be called if an animal is left in a vehicle during what is considered hazardous or dangerous environmental conditions.

Policy Regarding Volunteers and Staff Dating Special Olympics Athletes

Introduction

Among the Special Olympics movement’s highest priorities is the well-being of, and respect for the dignity of, Special Olympics athletes. The purpose of this policy is to protect all participants in the Special Olympics movement, including athletes, volunteers and staff, as well as Special Olympics Texas.

Every Special Olympics program must take all reasonable steps to ensure that athletes participating in Special Olympics do so in an environment that is free from abuse, intimidation, fear, pressure or coercion from any person in a position of authority, including Special Olympics staff, coaches and other volunteers. At the same time, Special Olympics respects the right of every Special Olympics athlete to be treated with dignity and to have the same rights as every other human being.

Policy

Special Olympics prohibits any Special Olympics staff member or volunteer (excluding spouses of athletes and athletes who are Class B volunteers) from dating or having a sexual relationship with any Special Olympics athlete. In the event that Special Olympics Texas learns of any dating or sexual relationship, SOTX immediately shall require either: 1) that the staff member or volunteer end his or her association with Special Olympics; or 2) that the association between the staff member or volunteer and Special Olympics will be terminated.

In the case of a Special Olympics athlete who is also a staff member or Class A volunteer, the SOTX President and CEO must evaluate the circumstances on a case-by-case basis and determine if an authority relationship exists between the staff/volunteer athlete and the competing athlete, and if it is determined that there is such a relationship, then apply the above policy in the same manner as the policy is applied to non-athlete staff or volunteers.

Special Olympics respects the right of athletes to have the full range of human relationships available to other human beings. This policy shall not be interpreted as a limitation on the rights of athletes, but only as a restriction on Special Olympics staff and volunteers.

The terms “Special Olympics athlete” and “athlete” refer to people with intellectual disabilities. The term “volunteer” includes Unified Sports® partners.

Athlete Recruitment

In keeping with the Special Olympics coaching philosophy of athletes first, winning second, Special Olympics coaches shall not actively recruit athletes from other teams/delegations for the sole purpose of persuading that athlete to leave his/her affiliated delegation with promises of better conditions or other valuable considerations. Coaches who engage in the practice shall be considered to be in violation of the Coaches Code of Conduct Agreement and subject to review.

Instructions for Athlete Transfers

If an athlete wishes to transfer to another delegation, it is that athlete's responsibility to initiate the transfer.

If an athlete who is not on your team wants to join your team, your first step as a coach is to ask the athlete if they are on another team. If they are, give them the Athlete Transfer Form and tell them their primary coach must sign it first. If they are not on a team or don't know if they are, call the area office to check on their status.

  1. Athlete gets a Transfer Request Form and has both the current coach and the new coach sign it.
  2. Once both coaches have signed the form, the program/area director must sign the form for final approval.
  3. It will be the new coach's responsibility to ensure that the new athlete has the proper medical documents.
  4. In cases where there is a disagreement, dispute, or conflict between coaches, the program/area director will have the authority to approve primary team transfers. The Athlete Transfer Form is a tool and is optional for HoDs or coaches to use unless the program/area director mandates its use due to delegation conflicts.

Probation or Suspension of a Delegation or Delegation Personnel

Action may be taken by an Area Sports Management Team (ASMT) to either put on probation or suspend a delegation or delegation personnel. Examples of actions that might lead to these steps are (not limited to): not following the policies and procedures of SOTX as outlined in the SOTX Information Guide, sending inflammatory emails or communication toward another delegation, and facilitating external communication with newspapers or television regarding SOTX issues without coordinating with the Vice President of Communications. Depending on the severity of the issues, an ASMT may elect to put the delegation on probation as a warning. If the behavior continues, suspension is an option.

SOTX retains the right to dissolve a delegation if the delegation does not follow the policies and procedures of the organization. If a delegation is put on suspension, the name, logo, and image of that delegation may not be used during the time of the suspension. Parents will be given the options to apply for acceptance within another delegation, or they may apply for a new delegation to be formed. Provisions for formation will be provided depending on the circumstances.

Conflict Resolution and Appeal Process

Depending on the issue, either the Area Sports Management Team or the Chapter Management Team will handle violations regarding sports rules, code of conduct, and organizational policies and procedures issues. The Conflict Resolution Flowchart on the next page depicts which group will respond to the violation.

Appeals of decisions made by the Area Sports Management Team must be sent to the Vice President of Field Services within 14 days of the decision. Appeals of decisions made by the Chapter Management Team must be sent to the President and CEO within 14 days of the decision. (Please refer to the Conflict Resolution Flowchart.)

All appeals will be heard in a closed hearing format. The individual(s) will be allowed to make a presentation which can last up to 10 minutes; additional time will be allowed for questions. Most appeals will be heard via conference call in order to expedite the process. Certified letters will be sent to all parties involved once a decision has been made. All decisions are final.

Conflict Resolution and Appeal Process Flowchart

Special Olympics Texas, Inc.’s (SOTX) policies and procedures continue to change and evolve as a direct result of our growth, especially in technology, risk management, and fund raising. We continue to always put the needs of our athletes first, and strive to implement organizational processes that hold us all to a high standard in order to best serve our athletes.

In order to more proficiently handle violations of SOTX’s rules, codes of conduct, or policies and procedures, two separate entities will handle the issues referenced above in the flowchart:

  1. Area Sports Management Team/Area Staff will review: sports rules violations; codes of conduct violations by an athlete, family member, volunteer or coach; coaches education issues; and outreach/athlete recruitment issues. The Chapter Sports Management Team will review appeals.
  2. Chapter Management Team will review: policies and procedures issues and codes of conduct violations pertaining to communications, fund raising, finance and risk management. The Chapter Management Team will include additional SOTX staff, volunteers, and athletes, as deemed appropriate, to review appeals.

Each review team will follow conflict resolution guidelines which include a written warning, probation, and suspension from the organization. The frequency and/or severity of the misconduct or violation are factors in determining which level of disciplinary action is required. SOTX reserves the right to immediately suspend an athlete, family member, volunteer, or coach for serious infractions, regardless of conflict resolution guidelines.


Section H:
Risk Management and Insurance

What is Risk Management?

Risk management is a method for identifying risks and developing and implementing programs to protect the organization and prevent loss. An effective risk management program consists of four basic steps that are part of a continuing process. As you engage in new activities and plan different events, continue to use these four steps to help protect against the new exposures that arise:

  • Assess - identify, analyze and prioritize potential risks.
  • Select methods to prevent loss.
  • Implement the best methods.
  • Monitor the results and revise as necessary.

Risk Management Responsibilities

Coaches have the ultimate responsibility to reduce the risks of participation for athletes involved in the sport that they are coaching.

Conducting a Safe Program: Field of Play

The field of play should be checked before and after all practices and events for any obstacles. An indoor court should be clear of any obstacles or obstructions surrounding the out-of-bounds areas. The actual playing surface should be clear, safe and dry. All lines should be clearly visible. Any indoor facility must have proper ventilation, especially in warm climates.

Outdoor facilities should be checked for uneven playing surfaces, including holes, uneven grade, or moisture. The playing area should be also checked for additional obstacles. Out-of-bounds areas should be clear of obstructions. All boundaries should be clearly marked.

Other areas being used by players, such as locker rooms and showers, should be reviewed for safety and accessibility. Floors should be properly drained and have non-slip surfaces.

Areas utilized by spectators, families and other nonparticipating players should be assessed for safety and accessibility.

Equipment

(Also see Equipment Requirements - Section H)

Athletes need to have the proper equipment for each sport, and if equipment must be worn, it should fit properly. The following areas should be addressed:

  • Adequate amount of equipment - all necessary equipment should be available for all practices and events. Athletes should be able to use the equipment for warm-up and participation.
  • Well-maintained equipment - all equipment should be checked prior to the start of practice or competition. Equipment that is routinely or occasionally used should be maintained and checked before each use.
  • Proper use of equipment - manufacturers develop equipment for specific uses. The coaching staff should instruct their players in the correct use of the equipment. Improper use is not only unsafe but may invalidate the warranty.
  • Proper size of equipment - equipment should adhere to the standard specifications designated by the sport.
  • Proper fit of equipment - any equipment used in the context of a sport should be properly fitted to each athlete.
  • Proper warranty and safety criteria - review of the safety criteria and appropriate use is recommended.

Traveling

The coaching staff is responsible for all their athletes when traveling to play and compete. The coach should review any special instructions for each player with the parents or guardian. Written instructions for any medications should be reviewed and taken on the trip.

Transportation should be adequate for all players. The mode of transportation should be safe, as should any drivers. Weather conditions should be reviewed before leaving for any competition. The coach should contact the opposing team’s coach to review arrangements for supplies, such as water, emergency management plans and locker room space. Important telephone numbers should be recorded and available.

If the trip involves overnight lodging, safe and accessible accommodations should be secured. Contact information should be given to all parents. Special dietary concerns should be clarified with parents and arrangements made to address them.

Parents/guardians need to be advised when and where to pick up their athlete upon return. A plan for a “telephone tree” should be developed in case of an alteration of plans.

Supervisory Planning

The coach needs to provide appropriate supervision for all practices and events. Any other personnel or volunteers should be properly trained and supervised in their work with the athletes. Suitable credentials are recommended for those who are involved, such as Special Olympics Texas and National Governing Body (NGB) coaching credentials, and CPR and First Aid certification.

We recommend that practices and games are covered by medical personnel, including physicians, athletic trainers, physical therapists, and emergency personnel.

Prevention of Injury

Many factors contribute to the prevention of injury or the reduction of risk for injury.

  • Appropriate assessment of athlete readiness and skill - the coaching staff should determine a starting point for each athlete based on his readiness and skill. Motivation, interest, and physical skill all contribute to development of a plan of action.
  • Training program for year-round fitness - the coach should work with each athlete and family/guardian to develop and encourage compliance with a year-round fitness and nutrition plan to foster and develop positive health behaviors, as well as physical preparation for activity.
  • Sport-specific training plan - the coach should work with the athlete and family/guardian to develop an individualized sports training plan for development of the appropriate skills and conditioning for sport.
  • Availability and completion of medical forms and special medical instructions are recommended for all practices and games.
  • First aid kits should be available at all practices and games.
  • Acclimatization to the environment is recommended.
  • Heat - athletes should gradually adjust to exercising in the heat over a two-week period. Initially, they should exercise in light clothing during the cooler portions of the day. Gradually expose athletes to short periods of exercise during the hotter part of the day, similar to the time of competition. If the sport involves heavy clothing and equipment, they should first adjust to wearing their uniforms, and then adjust to wearing the uniform in the heat. Hydration should be maintained at all practices and games.
  • Cold - athletes should adjust to the cold over a period of several days. They should learn to layer their clothing so they can adjust attire for the temperature. Hats and gloves should be worn if necessary.
  • Altitude - athletes who are not accustomed to exercising at high altitudes should adjust gradually over a period of 10 to 14 days. Exercise should be gradually increased in length and intensity. Altitude sickness, consisting of nausea, dizziness, shortness of breath, and flu-like symptoms are common without gradual adjustment.
  • Sun or snow blindness - to prevent both sun and snow blindness, athletes are required to wear dark glasses with lateral shields during outdoor activities. Glasses should have ultraviolet blocking.
  • Sunburn - visors or long-sleeve shirts should be worn if athletes will be exposed to the sun during their activities. Sunscreen with a minimum SPF 15 should be used on all exposed body parts, including the nose, ears, face, lips and any bald spots on the scalp.
  • Wind - wind can cause an increase in chills, dry skin and eye irritation. Glasses will provide some protection, as will eye drops or artificial tears. Lip balm maintains moisture of the lips. Proper clothing will provide protection from skin irritation and chilling.

Special Considerations for Special Olympics Athletes

Developing an Emergency Management Plan

  • Develop an Emergency Management Team.
  • Ideally, a physician, an athletic trainer, or a physical therapist knowledgeable in the triage and immediate management of athletic injuries should cover practices and games.
  • The coach should provide the athletes’ medical forms and any special instructions to medical personnel.
  • An emergency medical technician (EMT) and ambulance should be available immediately upon calling.
  • The coaching staff should be educated and skilled in immediate management designed to contain the extent of the illness/injury until appropriate medical personnel are available.
  • The coach and all personnel should be certified in cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) and first aid.

Each coach is responsible for activating an Emergency Management Plan.

  1. The coach should assess the situation as quickly as possible after an incident has occurred.
  2. The coach should assess the incident right where it occurred to determine whether the athlete can be safely moved.
  3. The coach should know the athlete and his/her personality to best assess injury versus reaction.
  4. The coach should remain calm, which will also serve to keep the athlete and others calm.
  5. The coach should listen to the athlete describe what happened.
  6. The coach should ask simple, clarifying questions.
  7. The coach should observe the athlete’s face and eyes while talking.
  8. The coach should observe for any asymmetry, trauma, general body alignment and functional abilities.
  9. The coach should survey the area where the injury occurred for any unsafe articles or terrain.
  10. The coach should evaluate the criticality of the situation, and then institute action based on the evaluation of the situation.
    • The primary survey of the athlete evaluates airway, breathing, circulation and consciousness.
    • The secondary survey of the athlete evaluates the seriousness of all other injuries once it is determined that the athlete is breathing and alert, with good cardiac function.
    • If no medical personnel are available, the coach should respond based on his/her assessment of the criticality of the situation.
    • When in doubt, do not put the athlete back into play.
    • Always refer to a health care professional for additional follow up.

Crisis Communication Plan

(also reference Crisis Plan - Section U)

Special Olympics Texas has adopted a crisis communication plan that is to be followed at all times. During local and regional trainings and competitions, the following are recommendations:

  • All activities should be calmly and simply explained to the athlete.
  • A telephone or cellular phone should be immediately available in case of an emergency situation.
  • Plans for access to emergency transportation and early notification of a physician or emergency room are recommended.
  • Your Special Olympics Texas area director should be immediately notified if emergency transportation is necessary.
  • Parents/guardians should be immediately notified not only for information but also for planning of immediate or follow-up care.
  • All illnesses and injuries should be thoroughly documented on the First Report of Accident/Incident Form. The completed form should be forwarded to your Special Olympics Texas area director.
  • The coach should obtain a report from the medical personnel who handle an incident.
  • This report should also indicate changes in risk or future participation.

Immediate Care Skills

Certain immediate care skills are necessary for triage and containment of injury.

  • Cardiac or respiratory dysfunction or arrest - follow the tenets of CPR.
  • Abrasions or Contusions - clean the area with either soap and water or hydrogen peroxide. Keep the area clean and dry. Bandage the area securely while exercising, but expose it to air whenever possible.
  • Blisters - do not cut the skin off a blistered area. Use a foam or felt pad to keep pressure off the area. Only break the blister if it impedes activity. When puncturing a blister, use a sterile pin to make an entrance on two sides of the blister. Place a pressure bandage or second skin on the blister to allow the covering skin to re-adhere to the skin below.
  • Heat Cramps - heat cramps normally accompany strenuous activity in which there is profuse sweating. These cramps are not usually serious and will respond to gentle stretching and hydration.
  • Heat Exhaustion - this is the result of exercise in hot weather. The athlete will sweat profusely and have cool, clammy skin. The athlete will complain of a slight headache, dizziness, nausea or fatigue. The athlete should be taken out of the heat (and sun) and the uniform or equipment removed. The athlete should lie down with his/her feet elevated, and be cooled by drinking cool water and/or being sponged. If the athlete does not respond in a short period of time, he/she should be sent for immediate referral.
  • Immediate care for sprains, strains, and contusions (RICE):
    • R - rest; stop any activity that causes pain.
    • I - ice for 24-48 hours after the injury.
    • C - compression with an elastic bandage to contain the swelling.
    • E - elevate the injured area to control swelling.

All other injuries or illnesses should be evaluated by an appropriate health care professional for management and advice. The coach should communicate with the health care personnel for information and instructions regarding future care and return to sport.

Special Olympics Corporate Insurance Program (SOCIP)

Special Olympics Texas has insurance through the Special Olympics Corporate Insurance Program (SOCIP). SOCIP is a customized Special Olympics insurance program that provides certain common coverages for all U.S. Programs and Special Olympics, Inc. in accordance with Special Olympics Official General Rules. The SOCIP brochure is outlined below for your information and review. If you have any questions or need additional information, please contact your area/program director or development director.

SOCIP Brochure Content

Description

The SOCIP brochure provides a summary of the Special Olympics Corporate Insurance Program (SOCIP). SOCIP is the customized Special Olympics insurance program that provides certain common coverages for all U.S. Programs and SOI in accordance with Special Olympics Official General Rules Section 9.09. Detailed terms and conditions of coverage are contained in each respective policy, which can be obtained through American Specialty Insurance & Risk Services, Inc. (“American Specialty”).

Named Insured(s)

  • Special Olympics, Inc.
  • All Special Olympics Accredited U.S. Programs

For the purposes of this brochure, “Registered Volunteer” and “Registered Class A Volunteer” are both defined as a volunteer who is registered in accordance with the Special Olympics General Rules or other Special Olympics policies in effect during the policy period.

Commercial General Liability (GL)

Description of Coverage:

The general liability coverage protects insured Special Olympics organizations, athletes, and registered volunteers from third-party claims of bodily injury, property damage, and personal and advertising injury due to alleged negligence arising from the conduct by Special Olympics during a Special Olympics activity. Under the policy, the insurer has a “duty to defend” until such time as legal liability has been established, and therefore, defense costs associated with the aforementioned general liability claims are paid regardless of legal liability.

In addition, the general liability policy has been endorsed to provide coverage for losses resulting from damage to property in the care, custody, or control of Special Olympics, excluding watercraft, aircraft, autos, and Special Olympics owned property. The loss must occur during a Special Olympics conducted/sponsored event and Special Olympics must be found legally liable for the loss. The limit of liability is $100,000, subject to a $2,500 deductible per claim, for such property losses.

Additional Insured(s):

Entities with an insurable interest will be named as an Additional Insured, but only with respect to liability resulting from the negligent acts or omissions of Special Olympics, as requested and approved by American Specialty on behalf of Philadelphia Indemnity Insurance Company.

NOTE:

Only American Specialty may issue certificates of insurance on behalf of Philadelphia Indemnity Insurance Company - no authority is granted to any other entity.

General Liability Coverage and Limits:

Each Occurrence $1,000,000
General Aggregate (other than products and completed operations) $5,000,000
Sexual Abuse and Molestation per-occurrence (included in policy limits, but subject to a $100,000 self-insured retention) $2,000,000 agg. $1,000,000
Products-Completed Operations $1,000,000
Participant Legal Liability Included
Personal and Advertising Injury $1,000,000
Damage to Premises Rented to You $1,000,000
Medical Payments Excluded

NOTE:

If alcohol is being served/sold at your event, please contact your area/program director or development director (regardless of whether or not a Program is selling alcohol). If it is determined that liquor liability coverage is needed, an application must be completed by the U.S. Program and approved by American Specialty and Philadelphia Indemnity Insurance Company. The minimum premium is $200.

The following fundraising activities are EXCLUDED from the SOCIP General Liability policy and may only be deemed eligible for coverage if certain underwriting requirements are met and the activity is approved by the Insurer prior to the event. Please contact area/program director or development director immediately if you are aware of a fundraising activity involving any of the following activities:

  • Golf Ball Drops
  • Firearms
  • Rodeo
  • Political Rallies
  • Animals
  • Fundraising activities lasting more than 7 consecutive days
  • Fundraising events with greater than 5,000 people at any one time (other than a Polar Plunge® winter fundraising event)
  • Aircraft (other than airplane pulls)
  • Over the Edge events

The following exclusions and requirements apply with respect to all Special Olympics events, fundraising or otherwise. Please contact your area/program director or development director if any of your activities involve the following:

  • Hot Air Balloons
  • Skydiving
  • Fireworks
  • Aircraft
  • Rock Climbing Walls
  • Construction Activities
  • Mechanical Amusement Rides
  • Watercraft (longer than 75 feet)
  • Inflatables

Non-Owned and Hired Automobile Liability (NOHA)

Description of Coverage:

This policy provides protection to Special Olympics for liability claims arising as a direct result of the use of a non-owned or hired automobile. For coverage to be effective, the vehicle must be used for Special Olympics’ business with the permission of Special Olympics and driven by an employee or a registered volunteer of Special Olympics.

Restrictions:

Non-owned and hired auto liability coverage applies excess of any other valid and collectible insurance.

NOTE:

Excess coverage is provided to Registered Class A Volunteers of Special Olympics who are using their personal vehicles on behalf of and with the permission of Special Olympics, and have a valid driver’s license and proof of insurance with at least the state minimum requirements.

Additionally, employees of Special Olympics are insured while using their own vehicles for Special Olympics business.

Covered Autos:

  • Hired Autos - Special Olympics’ autos that are leased, hired, rented (e.g., rental vehicles), or borrowed for less than one month by your Program, which are used in your business.
  • Non-Owned Autos - Special Olympics’ autos that are not leased, hired, rented, or borrowed that are used in your business (e.g., autos owned by employees or by volunteers).

Coverage and Limits:

Any One Accident $1,000,000

NOTE:

No coverage is provided for losses caused by an uninsured/underinsured motorist to non-owned vehicles; however, uninsured/underinsured motorists’ coverage is afforded for vehicles that are commercially rented by an insured. The uninsured/underinsured motorist limit is $55,000 (combined single limit) or increased to meet the statutory limits required by a particular state.

Hired Auto Physical Damage

Description of Coverage:

Coverage is provided for physical damage claims arising as a direct result of the use of a “commercially rented” vehicle by a Special Olympics’ employee, or registered volunteer for Special Olympics’ business with Special Olympics’ permission.

A vehicle is considered “commercially rented” if it is:

  1. obtained from an entity whose primary commercial purpose is renting vehicles for profit;
  2. a specific rental charge is made; and
  3. a rental contract is executed between the rental establishment and Special Olympics with respect to the particular vehicle.

The policy is subject to the limit and deductible shown below.

Deductible and Limits:

Hired Auto Physical Damage (per vehicle) $55,000
Deductible (per accident) collision $1,000
Deductible (per accident) other than collision $100

Excess Liability

Description of Coverage:

These policies provide insurance coverage in excess of scheduled underlying SOCIP policies for all Special Olympics Accredited U.S. Programs and Special Olympics, Inc. Contact American Specialty to determine if your policies (other than certain SOCIP policies) qualify to be scheduled for coverage under the excess policies.

Excess (10X1) Coverage and Limits:

Policy Aggregate $20,000,000
Each Occurrence $20,000,000
Sexual Abuse and Molestation Included
Self-Insured Retention $10,000

Excess (10 part of 20 excess of 10 excess of underlying) Coverage and Limits:

General Aggregate $10,000,000
Each Occurrence $10,000,000
Products/Completed
Operations Agg.
$10,000,000
Sexual Abuse and Molestation Included

Participant Accident Medical

Description of Coverage:

This policy responds when injuries resulting from an accident occur during a Covered Event or during Covered Travel. This is an accident medical policy, not a sickness or illness medical policy. For example, it may cover the medical expenses caused by a broken leg, but not those caused by appendicitis. An accident must occur in order for coverage to apply.

The accident medical insurance policy is excess of any other valid and collectible insurance or medical plan applicable to the injured participant.

Injuries are defined as accidental bodily injuries received while insured under this coverage and resulting independently of sickness and all other causes. A covered loss, for purposes of this insurance, will include: a) the repair or replacement of existing prosthetic devices such as artificial limbs, glass eyes, and artificial dental work; and b) bodily injuries arising as a result of a seizure (including epileptic seizures). To be covered, the Injury must occur while:

  1. participating in activities sponsored and supervised by Special Olympics; or
  2. traveling to, during, or after such activities as a member of a group in transportation furnished or arranged by Special Olympics.

Covered Event is defined as any scheduled activity authorized, organized, and supervised by Special Olympics. With respect to competition activities, this includes pre-competition activities and practice sessions.

Covered Event also includes activities authorized by Special Olympics that are Directly Supervised by Registered Class A Volunteers, but only when participation is part of the Special Olympics athlete’s overall sports training for Special Olympics, or for the purposes of qualifying for Special Olympics competition.

Directly Supervised is defined as supervised in person by a Registered Class A Volunteer. Registered Class A Volunteer is defined as an individual currently registered in accordance with the Special Olympics Official General Rules (July 1997 edition, and as amended from time to time) or other Special Olympics policies in effect during the policy period.

Covered Travel is defined as travel that is traveling to, during, or after such activities as a member of a group in transportation furnished or arranged by Special Olympics.

Insured Persons are defined as U.S. Special Olympics athletes (including Young Athletes), Unified partners, managers, coaches, officials, chaperones, supervisors, fundraising participants, and other volunteers, whose names are on file with Special Olympics, while participating in a Covered Event.

Participant Accident Coverage and Limits:

Excess Accident Medical/Dental Limit* $10,000
Accidental Death Limit $5,000
Dismemberment:
Both hands or feet $5,000
Both eyes $5,000
Speech and hearing (both ears) $5,000
One hand or one foot or speech or hearing $2,500
Thumb and indez finger of the same hand $1,250

Only one of the amounts above (the largest applicable) will be paid.

* Dental includes sound and natural teeth and repair and replacement of existing artificial dental work.

NOTE:

Please see the policy wording for a listing of all coverage exclusions.

Volunteer Medical Malpractice

Description of Coverage:

This policy provides insurance coverage for medical malpractice claims for medical services rendered at Special Olympics events by state-registered medical/ health professionals who are registered Special Olympics volunteers, other than doctors, acting in the capacity of a Special Olympics Registered Volunteer. Coverage is not provided for doctors. Commercial medical service firms volunteering the services of their paid employees are not covered. However, should any of these employees volunteer their services on a personal basis, separate from their employment status, coverage would be extended, provided such person is not a doctor and is a Special Olympics Registered Volunteer in accordance with the Special Olympics Official General Rules or other Special Olympics policies in effect during the policy period.

Medical Malpractice Coverage and Limits:

Each Claim $1,000,000
Aggregate $3,000,000
Deductible - each claim $2,500

NOTE:

Medical Malpractice coverage for Healthy Athletes physicians is provided under a separate policy, which is paid for by Special Olympics, Inc. Please contact area/program director or development director for further information.

Crime

Description of Coverage:

This policy provides insurance coverage to Special Olympics Accredited U.S. Programs against fraudulent, dishonest, or criminal acts committed by a Special Olympics’ employee, volunteer, or board member acting alone, or in collaboration with others, and causing Special Olympics to suffer a loss of money, securities, or property.

This policy provides world-wide coverage.

This policy also includes coverage for losses sustained by an ERISA plan.

Crime Coverage and Limits:

Employee Dishonesty policy limit $500,000
Retention (per occurrence) $100,000

Directors & Officers Liability (D&O)

Description of Coverage:

Each U.S. Program and Special Olympics, Inc. has bound D&O coverage through Philadelphia Indemnity Insurance Company. The D&O policy provides protection against liability caused by the wrongful acts of directors, officers, trustees, employees, and volunteers of Special Olympics, including employment-related practices. The policy does not cover bodily injury losses or breach of contract. Directors, officers, trustees, employees, volunteers, or the entity itself must be named in a lawsuit in order for coverage to respond. The limits, retention, and premium that apply to each U.S. Program will vary, depending on whether or not the U.S. Program has sustained losses in the past or its desired limit of liability. The minimum limit is $1,000,000 per claim/annual aggregate.

Summary of Key SOCIP Points

We want to stress that there are fundraising activities that are EXCLUDED from the SOCIP Commercial General Liability (GL) policy and may only be deemed eligible for coverage if certain underwriting requirements are met and the activity is approved by your area/program director, development director or the Vice President of Shared Services prior to the event. Those fundraising activities are:

  • Golf Ball Drops
  • Aircraft (other than airplane pulls)
  • Rodeos
  • Over the Edge events
  • Animals
  • Political Rallies
  • Firearms
  • Fundraising activities lasting more than 7 consecutive days
  • Fundraising events with greater than 5,000 people at any one time (other than a Polar Plunge® winter fundraising event

The following exclusions and requirements apply with respect to all Special Olympics Texas events, fundraising or otherwise. Please contact your area/program director or development director or the Vice President of Shared Services if any of your activities involve the following:

  • Hot Air Balloons
  • Construction Activities
  • Skydiving
  • Mechanical Amusement Rides
  • Fireworks
  • Inflatables
  • Aircraft
  • Watercraft (longer than 75 feet)
  • Rock Climbing Walls

Frequently Asked Questions Relating to Risk Management

What risk management responsibilities do I have as a coach?

As a leader within the Special Olympics Texas organization, you must take the steps necessary to protect yourself and the program. Your goals would include the following:

  • To maximize safety of athletes, volunteers and spectators.
  • To protect assets and reputation.
  • To transfer risk of financial loss through contracts and a quality insurance program.
  • To proactively report accidents/incidents to the SOTX area director to achieve fair resolutions.

As a coach, what supervisory planning am I responsible for?

Each coach needs to create a supervisory plan that includes assignments for assistant coaches and chaperones. The head coach should review each plan and provide clarification of responsibilities as needed. Some of the responsibilities of a coach include the following:

  • Providing appropriate training time, instruction, conditioning and competition experiences.
  • Being familiar with trends in the sport.
  • Ensuring an appropriate venue: walk through the venue to become familiar with the medical support, rules compliance, etc.
  • Familiarizing athletes with the venue surroundings and features.
  • Understanding athletes’ specific and unique health issues such as medications, illnesses, sensitivities or intolerances.
  • Coordinating transportation to and from training or competition.
  • Securing an on-site clothing change area that separates men and women.
  • Monitoring the physical and emotional condition of athletes.
  • Assisting with life skills for overnight situations.
  • Monitoring weather conditions that may affect athlete training, competition and travel to and from events.
  • Chaperoning special events such as dances and Opening or Closing Ceremonies.
  • Understanding Special Olympics and international governing bodies sport-specific rules.

What risk management issues do I need to be aware of concerning the field of play (FOP)?

Using the four basic risk management steps, you would:

  1. Assess the FOP to determine whether it provides a safe environment conducive to accomplishing Special Olympics Texas' objectives and allows for an appropriate response to an emergency.
  2. Once exposures are identified, select alternatives that will remove the exposure. There may be several different ways to accomplish the same goal.
  3. Implement the best method that will most effectively minimize the exposure.
  4. Continuously monitor and revise the situation as sometimes new exposures are created.

How do I assess the field of play?

Many tools are available to you. Use checklists provided at the end of this section, to determine the suitability of the FOP. Draw upon the experience of veteran Special Olympics personnel. Identify potential risks by inspecting the area well before the competition starts.

As an example - considerations for outdoor playing surfaces:

  • Look for and address such hazards as rocks, glass, uneven surfaces, uncovered drains, holes, above ground sockets and excessive wet spots.
  • If a baseball or softball field is enclosed by an outfield fence, it is preferable that the field contain a warning area that is both visible and clearly identifiable adjacent to the fence.
  • Examine the areas immediately adjacent to the playing field for hazards (e.g., light posts, guy wires, and holes) that might be encountered by a player whose momentum carries him/her out of bounds.
  • Be sure there is adequate separation (e.g., distance, fencing and netting) between the spectators and the playing field.

Considerations for indoor playing surfaces:

  • Ensure that all clocks, lights and windows are properly guarded and there is adequate lighting.
  • There needs to be sufficient space between the boundary of an activity or playing surface and the location of team benches, bleachers, walls, dividers, other activities and objects.
  • With regard to basketball courts, make sure that there are no unprotected glass doors, windows or unpadded walls directly behind the basketball backboard.
  • If temporary 24/45-second clocks have to be stationed at each end of the court, an effort should be made to place them as far away from the playing area as possible, while still permitting easy visibility to the players.
  • Make sure the playing surface is even, with no boards or nails protruding.

Which loss prevention methods do I select to protect against the exposures I have identified?

Many options may exist - choose the method that will maximize the safety of athletes, volunteers and spectators. Work with your local Special Olympics Texas area director to determine which choices might be better than others. Additional resources are the Sport Specific Competition Guides, which contain sport specific information.

Am I done with risk management after I implement the best method?

No way! It is a continuous process. Keep monitoring the FOP and make necessary revisions to minimize exposures.

What risk management issues do I need to be aware of concerning traveling?

To protect against the risks associated with driving while you are volunteering as a Special Olympics Texas coach, the following topics are discussed:

  • Transportation Safety Program
  • Safety First
  • Driving Responsibly
  • Guidelines for Vehicle Use
  • DWI Restrictive Disqualifiers
  • Traffic Violation Restrictive Disqualifiers
  • Accident Procedures
  • Borrowed Vehicles
  • Rented Vehicles
  • Transportation Company
  • Insurance
  • 15-Passenger Van Transportation Notice

Transportation Safety Program

Some of the most devastating losses for non-profit organizations involve motor vehicle accidents. This is a result of the high-risk nature of driving, and the large number of employees and volunteers who drive on behalf of these organizations. Damages associated with auto accidents can be extensive, from physical damage to the car to the liability for injuries that may result. Special Olympics Texas faces many transportation-related risks arising from the use of:

  1. Vehicles owned by employees, registered volunteers, or athletes (or an athlete’s family) and used on behalf of Special Olympics Texas.
  2. Rented or leased vehicles.
  3. Vehicles donated by a separate organization (e.g., school district or church) with or without a driver.
  4. Vehicles provided with a driver by a transportation company under contract with Special Olympics Texas.

Safety First

The primary goal of Special Olympics Texas’ transportation safety program is to protect the safety of individuals driving or riding in any vehicle being used to further the mission of Special Olympics Texas and to encourage individuals to drive responsibly to ensure the safety of others on the road.

Driving Responsibly

Driving duties are classified by the extent of driving required and the level of risk involved. The following classifications are used:

  1. Incidental errands, limited business travel, infrequent transport of passengers.
  2. Frequent travel, sometimes involving passengers; may drive larger vehicles, like trucks or vans, or vehicles with special equipment.
  3. Frequent driving with passengers; often drive larger vehicles, like trucks or vans, or vehicles with special equipment.

Guidelines for Vehicle Use

Special Olympics Texas has adopted general driver safety rules:

  • Obey all traffic laws.
  • Wear and require passengers to wear seat belts.
  • Do not exceed intended passenger capacity.
  • Keep doors locked.
  • Avoid driving when tired or taking medications that may impair your driving abilities.
  • Never drink and drive.

DWI Restrictive Disqualifiers – Refer to Volunteer Eligibility - Section C.

Traffic Violation Restrictive Disqualifiers

If the criminal background check or motor vehicle record check discloses convictions for three or more moving violations within the three years immediately preceding the record check, the volunteer applicant shall automatically be disqualified from driving on behalf of SOTX and will receive a certified letter as notification of this restriction.

Accident Procedures

The prompt reporting of any accidents or incidents is critical. Please report all accidents or incidents to the Vice President of Shared Services at 512.491.2933. Never admit liability or imply that Special Olympics Texas will “take care of everything” to either the driver’s passenger or anyone else. Do not discuss liability or responsibility as this will be handled by the insurer.

Borrowed Vehicles

Special Olympics Texas volunteers may borrow a bus or van from a church or another non-profit organization. There are risks to Special Olympics Texas with respect to borrowed vehicles, and therefore each should be diligent in its borrowing practices.

If the vehicle is borrowed from a school district or municipality, confirm that the county or municipality’s insurance covers the vehicle while being used by Special Olympics Texas. Also, make sure the vehicle is properly maintained and safe. If questionable, ask to see the vehicle maintenance and inspection records. If the donor provides a driver, ask about driver training, qualifications, and driving record. If a special license is required, confirm that the driver possesses a valid license. Finally, request a Certificate of Insurance showing the terms and limits of the donor’s current policy.

Rented Vehicles

Rented vehicles present unique insurance issues. Most rental agreements provide very limited liability limits for the rental company and make the driver responsible for any losses in excess of the rental agency’s coverage. The rental agreement usually makes the driver responsible for any physical damage to the rental car including loss of use (the loss of rental income because the agency cannot rent a damaged car).

Renting a car or other vehicle can place both Special Olympics Texas and the driver’s assets at risk. Therefore, whenever a volunteer or employee is renting a vehicle on behalf of Special Olympics Texas, that person should sign the rental agreement with their name and “for Special Olympics Texas”. This helps the driver avoid personal liability for incidents that may occur, and strengthens the position that Special Olympics Texas' hired auto insurance coverage, rather than the driver's policy, should respond to a liability claim. Please note that when using this phrase, the use of the rental vehicle must be exclusively for Special Olympics Texas business.

Each person should review his or her personal auto policy for coverage for rented vehicles including liability and physical damage. Some credit card companies offer insurance for physical damage for rental cars but make sure the driver understands the scope and limitations of this coverage, as it is often inadequate. The Special Olympics Corporate Insurance Program (SOCIP) policy provides hired auto insurance coverage for physical damage coverage for commercially rented vehicles, but if the value of the vehicle is worth more than the policy limit the renter should purchase the collision damage waiver coverage through the rental company. It is advisable to rent only from reputable rental agencies.

Transportation Company

The selection of a transportation service is extremely important since Special Olympics Texas can be deemed negligent if due diligence is not conducted in selecting a company and an accident occurs. It is important to investigate prospective companies thoroughly, including verification of the company’s operating authority and history of compliance (or lack thereof) with the state department of motor vehicles or federal regulators. This includes asking about the company’s driver training and qualifications, drivers’ motor vehicle reports, vehicle inspection procedures, and insurance information. It might also include checking references from the company’s existing and former clients and/or checking with the local Better Business Bureau. The selection process for choosing a particular company should be documented.

Insurance

Insurance provides an essential protection against transportation-related risks. Despite Special Olympics Texas’ best efforts in carrying out the objectives outlined above, there is always the chance that an accident will occur. Insurance provides financial protection to certain parties who may be affected by an auto accident.

There are three general classifications for the vehicles that may be used on behalf of Special Olympics Texas. These classifications are non-owned, hired, and owned vehicles and are defined on the next page. SOCIP provides coverage with respect to non-owned and hired vehicles, but does not provide coverage for vehicles owned by Special Olympics Texas. The following presents information on coverage for the three vehicle classifications.

Non-owned and Hired Automobile Insurance

  • SOCIP provides liability coverage for non-owned and hired automobiles as follows:
    1. Non-Owned Auto Coverage – provides $1,000,000 per occurrence excess liability coverage for Special Olympics organizations, athletes, employees, and registered volunteers for liability claims arising as a direct result of the use of a non-owned automobile.
      Non-owned automobiles are those autos used in connection with Special Olympics Texas business that Special Olympics Texas does not own, lease, hire, rent, or borrow. These include autos owned by employees, registered volunteers, and athletes when used to conduct Special Olympics Texas business.
      No coverage applies for physical damage to a non-owned auto driven on behalf of Special Olympics Texas.
    2. Hired Auto Coverage – provides $1,000,000 primary liability coverage for Special Olympics organizations, athletes, and registered volunteers for liability claims arising as a direct result of the use of a hired auto for specific Special Olympics business purposes.
      Hired automobiles are autos you lease (less than 30 days), hire, rent, or borrow. This does not include any auto you lease, hire, rent, or borrow from any employee, volunteer, or athlete. Examples of hired autos are: rental agency vehicles, vehicles loaned by a local school system or an auto dealer. A vehicle provided under a long term lease is considered an owned automobile, so this coverage would not be applicable.
      Uninsured/underinsured motorists coverage also applies with respect to hired autos ($50,000 combined single limit (CSL) or statutory limits). This provides coverage in the event an accident is caused by the negligence of another driver who is uninsured or underinsured.

Hired Automobile Physical Damage provides physical damage coverage for those vehicles which are commonly rented by Special Olympics. This coverage is limited to $50,000 per vehicle and is subject to a $1,000 deductible for each loss. If a vehicle is hired by a SOTX delegation, the delegation is responsible for the deductible. An auto is considered commercially rented if it is: a) obtained from an entity whose commercial purpose is the renting of vehicles for profit; b) a specific rental charge is made; and c) a rental contract is executed between the rental establishment and Special Olympics Texas with respect to the particular vehicle. For example, when Special Olympics Texas rents a van to transport athletes to a Special Olympics Texas event.

Please note that SOCIP coverage is for non-owned and hired automobiles only. Liability coverage for hired autos is provided on a primary basis. Liability coverage for non-owned autos is provided on an excess basis of any valid and collectible insurance (e.g., your personal auto coverage).

Personal Insurance

An individual’s personal automobile insurance policy’s coverage responds first to a liability claim if that person is driving:

  • His or her own car.
  • A rented vehicle that replaces the individual’s primary vehicle (in other words, the individual rented the car as a temporary replacement for an owned vehicle, not specifically for Special Olympics Texas purposes).

Personal insurance is primary in these cases because these autos are considered “non-owned autos” for Special Olympics Texas, and coverage is excess with respect to “non-owned autos.” The SOCIP Non-owned Automobile Liability Coverage is excess for Special Olympics [excess of any valid and collectible insurance, (e.g., your personal auto coverage)]; the limit is $1,000,000 combined single limit. The owner of the vehicle is responsible for his or her own automobile insurance (e.g., liability, physical damage, uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage).

Owned Auto Insurance

Any vehicle that is owned, titled, and registered to Special Olympics Texas must be insured by Special Olympics Texas through a Business Automobile Insurance Policy with owned automobile insurance coverage. The SOCIP Business Automobile Insurance Policy does not provide insurance coverage for any owned automobile, only those automobiles that are not hired or owned by Special Olympics. If you have questions or need additional information, please contact Special Olympics Texas’ Vice President of Shared Services.

EXAMPLES

The below examples illustrate the application of some of the risk management techniques outlined above.

Example 1: Use of Vehicle Owned by Employee, Registered Volunteer, or Athlete (not owned by SOTX)

When Special Olympics Texas employees, registered volunteers, or athletes are using their own vehicles to drive athletes to and/or from a Special Olympics Texas sponsored event, it is required that:

  • The vehicle is insured at or above the minimum standard as required by the state in which the vehicle is licensed and registered.
  • The driver of the vehicle is a registered Class A volunteer.
  • The driver has a valid driver license.
  • The driver will make sure that he or she and all vehicle occupants use safety belts, follow passenger safety procedures and obey all traffic laws.

Example 2: Hired Buses

A local bus company wants to donate, or has been hired by Special Olympics Texas to provide the use of its buses and drivers to transport athletes to the Special Olympics State Games.

It is required that the bus company:

  • Verify and provide proof of Charter Automobile Liability Insurance. This should be done through a current and valid certificate of insurance that shows coverage is in effect at or above the minimum standard required by the state in which the vehicle(s) is (are) licensed.
  • Verify and provide proof, evidenced by a valid certificate of insurance that all statutory workers' compensation coverages are in effect for drivers provided by the bus company.
  • Verify that the certificate of insurance is current and validated by signature. The certificate of insurance should be “issued” to Special Olympics Texas. Special Olympics, Inc. and Special Olympics Texas should be the “Certificate Holder” and “Additional Insured”.
  • Verify that each driver holds a valid driver license for the type of vehicle to be driven.

Example 3: Vehicle Rental

An employee, athlete, or registered volunteer (with approval from Special Olympics Texas) rents a vehicle from a vehicle rental agency for Special Olympics Texas business.

It is required that:

  • The employee, athlete, or registered volunteer must obtain permission/approval, preferably in writing, to rent a vehicle for Special Olympics Texas business.
  • The driver has a valid driver license.
  • The driver must obtain from the rental agency verification that the vehicle is operating properly and meets all mandatory requirements, including inspections.
  • The driver reads and fully understands the rental agreement, comprehends what the rental rate includes, signs the rental agreement as a representative of Special Olympics Texas to make it clear that he or she is renting the vehicle for business purposes, and makes sure that he or she and all passengers wear safety belts and adhere to all passenger safety procedures.

15-Passenger Van Transportation Notice

Special Olympics Texas programs are prohibited from using 15-passenger vans to transport athletes or other individuals to and from Special Olympics Texas (SOTX) events, and Special Olympics Texas strongly discourages other organizations from using 15-passenger vans to transport people to or from Special Olympics events. Organizations that use SOTX’s name to solicit funds or use SOTX’s federal tax identification number are considered a SOTX program.

SOTX recognizes that it is up to each non-SOTX organization to determine whether or not it will use 15-passenger vans. By using 15-passenger vans, a non-SOTX organization certifies that the organization does NOT use SOTX’s name to solicit funds or use SOTX’s federal tax identification number, and they also understand and certify that:

  1. Anyone operating a 15-passenger van owned by the non-SOTX organization for the purpose of transporting SOTX athletes or other persons to or from SOTX activities is acting as the employee or volunteer of the organization and not on behalf of SOTX.
  2. The driver’s operation of the 15-passenger van will be considered to be in the course and scope of the driver’s employment for or volunteer responsibilities for the non-SOTX organization, and not for or on behalf of SOTX.
  3. Non-SOTX organizations that operate 15-passenger vans should comply with the applicable safety standards promulgated by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).

SOTX must have on file an executed 15-Passenger Van Transportation Certification Form, from each non-SOTX organization, before they will be considered a non-SOTX organization. To coordinate obtaining a 15-Passenger Van Transportation Certification, please contact the Vice President of Shared Services at 512.491.2933.

In accordance with the U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s Consumer Advisory, Special Olympics Inc.’s mandate, and SOTX’s policy and sincere concern for the athlete’s safety, effective January 1, 2005, any SOTX athlete who is transported in a 15-passenger van by a SOTX program will not be allowed to participate in SOTX event(s).

Loss Control Guidelines for Competitions and Practices

Preventing injuries to participants and spectators is a primary risk management objective. The participants and spectators at a Special Olympics Texas event expect that the activity will be conducted in a reasonable and prudent manner. Although injuries are inherent in the nature of amateur sports and no one can prevent all injuries, it is incumbent upon individuals conducting amateur sports events to use reasonable care in providing an appropriate environment for the athletes, officials, volunteers, and spectators who take part.

This section provides guidelines to assist you in developing programs and techniques to reduce the risk of injury to athletes. The following are the general areas of responsibility that apply with respect to loss control for practices and competitions. These areas are covered in greater detail throughout this section.

  • Preparation – providing proper planning for each step of training and competition.
  • Environment – selecting an appropriate venue and using proper equipment.
  • Instruction and Competition – ensuring appropriate sport skills instruction for practice and competition.
  • Athlete Group Composition – matching according to strength, size, and ability.
  • Athlete Assessment – continually assessing each athlete for participation in appropriate activities within his/her ability.
  • Supervision – ensuring acceptable supervision and maintaining an adequate chaperone to athlete ratio.
  • Inherent Dangers – informing athletes of inherent risks associated with a specific sport.
  • Emergency Action Plan – establishing and using an emergency action plan that includes procedures for emergency medical support, postponements, cancellation, communication, and incident and accident reporting.
  • Medical Assistance – medical support is to be provided at all times. The greater the risk within an activity, the higher the level of medical support required.

Venue Assessment

The venue refers to the physical environment within which the athletes train, develop skills, and compete. A venue also includes the surrounding area such as parking lots, grounds, cafeteria, buildings, lockers, shower rooms, and any other areas utilized.

The venue should be assessed to uphold the two priorities for SOTX leaders, officials, coaches, athletes, parents, and care providers: 1) provide a safe environment conducive to accomplishing Special Olympics Texas objectives, and 2) allow for appropriate response to an emergency.

The venues must be evaluated to identify any condition that does not comply with the aforementioned priorities. Once a condition has been identified, immediate corrective action should be taken to reduce or eliminate the risk. The following questions will assist you in assessing the adequacy of the physical environment:

  • Does the venue meet all rules specifications?
  • Is there appropriate protection from potential hazards (e.g., padding on walls under basketball backboards)?
  • Is the venue large enough to accommodate the number of athletes and spectators expected?
  • Does the venue have adequate lighting for Special Olympics Texas purposes?
  • Does the venue practice good housekeeping (e.g., doorways are free and clear of unused equipment, floors are clean and dry)?
  • Is the venue equipped with acceptable climate controls such as air conditioning, heating, and fresh air ventilation?
  • Are athlete and spectator areas accessible to emergency response personnel?
  • Does the pool area meet all Special Olympics Texas criteria?

Facility Inspection

Once you have selected an acceptable venue, it is important to develop a plan for inspecting the facilities prior to games and practices to identify hazards. The following guidelines should be used to help identify potentially hazardous areas. In addition, at the end of this section, you will find checklists to assist you in the inspection process. These checklists are not intended to be exhaustive nor can they identify every possible source of an incident. Use them as the foundation to develop a customized inspection of the facility.

Pre-use inspections should be done after reading, but before signing, the owner’s proposed use agreement. All agreements and contracts must be reviewed and approved by the Vice President of Shared Services. Please fax all agreements/contracts, prior to signing, to 512.835.7756. Some use agreements will contain language that makes you responsible for all injuries occurring while you occupy the premises. If you are not able to get the language modified, it is important to note in writing to the property owner, any defects you have noticed before you sign the agreement. Request that the defects be repaired by the owner prior to the time you use the facility.

In addition to a pre-use inspection, playing areas and spectator areas should be inspected immediately prior to an event. This discussion assumes the facility will be inspected when it is not occupied. When inspecting, picture in your mind the facility both with the average number of players and spectators you expect as well as the maximum number that might be present. Stands and walkways that are adequate at normal levels of occupancy might be dangerously inadequate for overflow crowds. Will there still be adequate separation for spectators and athletes? Will there be an avenue open for emergency medical providers to get to an injured person (including ambulance access)? For games and practices, an inspection of playing areas and spectator areas (if spectators will be present) should be made prior to the activity. The particulars of the inspection and items to be considered will vary depending on the type of activity and facility.

Documentation of equipment and facility inspections can be a key to a successful defense in the event of litigation. Inspection reports may provide evidence to a judge and jury that the equipment or facilities were not defective and were not the cause of a participant’s injury. Special Olympics Texas coaches and volunteers who conduct pre-event inspections should document the results in a checklist that is kept on file.

There are basic procedures that should be followed when inspecting facilities and equipment which are intended to be representative of the risk management approach to be used rather than an exhaustive list of procedures (see "How do I assess field of play?" ).

Certificate of Insurance

What is a certificate of insurance?

The certificate of insurance is a one-page document which provides evidence that insurance coverage exists. It identifies the insured person or organization. The certificate outlines the extent and limits of coverage but does not modify or extend any coverage. It merely reports what exists.

The Special Olympics certificate outlines the coverages and limits of insurance provided to the Special Olympics organization, the insurer providing the coverages, and the effective and expiration dates of the policy. In addition, the certificate specifies the covered event and the dates of coverage for that event.

The certificate holder is the person or organization named in the certificate, known as the “holder” of that certificate. That person or organization has no more or less coverage as a result of being a certificate holder than otherwise. It does, however, provide the proof required that insurance does exist which is the comfort level desired by most interested parties.

If you have entered into any agreement, contract or permit containing an insurance clause, assumption of liability, indemnification or hold harmless language, please forward a copy of the agreement with your Special Olympics Request for Certificate of Insurance Form to the Vice President of Shared Services. All such agreements must be reviewed by the Vice President of Shared Services at 512.835.9873, ext. 2933 and also by the SOTX insurance provider (currently, American Speciality Insurance).

When do I need one?

You’ll need a certificate of insurance when a person, organization, facility or venue (etc.) requests verification of Special Olympics insurance coverage. It is common practice for the person or organization to define minimum coverage and limit requirements.

What does a certificate of insurance show?

A certificate shows the coverage and limits requested, the insurance carrier and policy effective dates. It may also specify relevant information (e.g., date, place, additional insured) regarding an event. It will also show:

  • The Insured: Special Olympics Texas, Inc.
  • The Certificate Holder: the person or organization requesting the Certificate of Insurance.

What if the person or organization wants to be an “additional insured?”

This “status” will be requested by the prospective certificate holder. You must indicate this request on the Request for Certificate of Insurance Form. You must also explain the role the prospective “additional insured” will play in your event. Contact your area office for an application to request a certificate of insurance.

Will I have to pay anything for doing this?

In most cases, no. If the event you are holding has some very unusual circumstances, your insurance company may require additional premiums.

What if a facility (venue, event sponsor, coordinator, etc.) we are using (in-kind) for our event asks us to sign a contract or agreement?

Always have your contracts and/or agreements reviewed by the Vice President of Shared Services before signing. Contracts and agreements often include wording which transfers liability.

Certificate Procedures

A certificate should only be requested when it is required by a facility or organization. To request a certificate, please complete the Special Olympics Request for Certificate of Insurance Form (contact your area office for a copy of this form). This request form provides for the identification of necessary information to issue the appropriate certificate, including the following:

Special Olympics Chapter/Area Data

  • Includes name, address and phone/fax numbers of person completing the request form.

Event Data

  • Includes name, date, location and brief description of event, especially an indication that Special Olympics is conducting the event.

Certificate Holder

  • Entity requesting certificate of insurance includes name, address and phone/fax numbers of certificate holder.

Additional Insured

  • This is needed only if the certificate holder requires additional insured status.

Mailing Instructions

  • All certificates will be mailed to the Special Olympics Texas chapter office unless it is indicated that the certificate is to be sent directly to the certificate holder. The original, one copy of the certificate and the accompanying endorsement will be sent to the requesting Special Olympics Texas area office.

Special Events

When do I need a special event policy?

Some instances for which you’ll need a special event policy are when:

  • An entity other than the area or chapter office requires “Named Insured” status rather than additional insured status.
  • Liquor liability is required.
  • The event involves hazardous activities (e.g., fireworks, bungee jumping, aviation, skydiving, weapon use, pistol shooting, auto or motorcycle racing, events involving aircraft, or watercraft 50 feet or more in length).
  • Property of others in your care, custody and control on your premises and while in transit to or from your premises.
  • You are having a special event parade.

Will I have to pay anything for this policy?

Yes, an additional premium will be charged in accordance with the risk.

How do we purchase a special event policy?

If you know your event meets any of the above criteria, contact your program/area director to receive a special event application, liquor liability application or special event parade application.

Training Schools – Refer to Section F.

Responsibilities of the Coach – Refer to Section E.

Athlete and Parent/Care Provider Responsibilities

Each athlete and parent/care provider must have a complete medical form on file for verification that the athlete has given the proper medical clearance to participate in a Special Olympics Texas sports program pursuant to the Special Olympics General Rules. In the event of sudden illness or accident, the on-site medical personnel will have this form available to facilitate and expedite treatment.

Each athlete and parent or care provider is responsible for the athlete:

  • Being dressed appropriately for the activity
  • Being prepared to participate in the activity
  • Behaving appropriately
  • Understanding the sport
  • Following all designated procedures

The parent/care provider is responsible for dispensing medication. If the parent/care provider is unable to do so, that individual must sign a release and provide approval and instruction for the coach and/or program leader to dispense the medication.

Games Management Team (GMT)

Each venue is managed by a sport-specific Games Management Team (GMT). The GMT is responsible for conducting a safe event. This includes:

  • Providing a safe competition environment for all participants, taking into consideration temperature, humidity, and weather conditions.
  • Providing a safe environment in and around the competition area.
  • Providing a competition event at which all individuals have an opportunity to compete against others of similar ability.
  • Providing a competition event that is conducted according to the official rules and to the highest standard of fairness.
  • Implementing the Special Olympics Texas Crisis Plan referenced in Section U.
  • Assuring emergency medical support is readily available.

Prior to the beginning of any competition, the GMT should conduct an orientation for all volunteers involved. This orientation should include a review of:

Equipment Requirements

(Also see Equipment)

There are two categories of equipment:

  1. Personal Equipment – This type of equipment includes, but is not limited to, the athlete’s personal gear such as clothing, footwear, and protective equipment.
  2. Activity Equipment – This type of equipment includes sport-specific items such as sticks, balls, goals, nets, bats, poles, whistles, cones, padding, and mats.

Clothing includes attire appropriate to the sport. In gymnastics for example, it is recommended that athletes not wear pants with belts or zippers because this type of apparel can be caught in the apparatus. Footwear should be appropriate for the sport. For example, running shoes are not appropriate for tennis, basketball, or volleyball. Court shoes are appropriate for these sports because shoes designed for the court provide more stability and lateral support. Protective equipment includes, but is not limited to, kneepads, shin guards, helmets, mouth guards, and glass guards. Each sport has its own sport-specific equipment requirements.

Sport-specific requirements are identified in the Official Special Olympics Sports Rules for each sport or the National Governing Body (NGB) Rules.

Avoid “making due” or improvising with whatever equipment can be found (e.g., using floor hockey helmets for cycling). All sports have sport-specific equipment designed to either assist or protect the athlete. All equipment should meet the demands of the sport. Questionable equipment should not be used.

Many sports prohibit wearing certain types of jewelry because it may cause injury to the athlete wearing it or other athletes.

Competition/Games Evaluation

After the end of each event, the GMT is to complete a Competition/Games Evaluation Form for documentation purposes. The following areas of risk management are to be evaluated:

  • Physical Environment
  • Sport Rules
  • Emergency Action Plan
  • Emergency Medical Support
  • Volunteer Involvement

Recommended Emergency Medical Procedures

The following is a brief synopsis of medical procedures to follow. It is not a substitute for competent, trained, and licensed medical professionals.

  1. Do not move an athlete you believe may be seriously injured, especially an athlete with a head, neck, or back injury.
    • As a general rule, emergency medical assistance is needed if a victim is experiencing unconsciousness, breathing problems, persistent chest or abdominal pain, no pulse, severe bleeding, vomiting or passing blood, poisoning, seizures, injuries to head, neck, back, and/or possible broken bones.
    • Other emergency situations include fire or explosions, presence of poisonous gas, downed electrical wires, swift moving water, motor vehicle collisions, and victims who cannot be moved easily.
  2. A responsible person MUST STAY WITH THE INJURED ATHLETE at all times and have the Special Olympics Texas Application for Participation (medical form) available. That person must also provide appropriate emergency support based on his or her level of training and/or certification.
  3. Another responsible person should CALL THE EMERGENCY MEDICAL ASSISTANCE NUMBER (911) and meet them. This will enable paramedics to come as quickly as possible and to enter the area at the designated place.
  4. Information to provide to the operator:

    • Caller’s name (and number if available)
    • Name of site and location of intersecting streets
    • Injured athlete’s location at the site
    • Type of injury and care being given
  5. Caller should report to the individual staying with the victim(s) and convey what the dispatcher said.
  6. Contact the parent or care provider as soon as possible.

Please visit emergency procedures and preparedness (Section I) for more information

General Rules Policies – Refer to Athlete Eligibility (Section B) of the SIG.

Medical and Related Requirements

Official Special Olympics Sports Rules, Section P, contains information concerning medical and related requirements.

Section P

  1. Accredited programs and GOC’s must conduct all sports training and competition activities in a safe environment, taking all reasonable steps to protect the health and safety of athletes, coaches, volunteers and spectators, and must adhere to sport-specific medical and safety requirements as contained in the Sport Rules.
  2. Accredited programs shall provide for adequate supervision and coaching for all athletes. For all training and competition activities, a 4 to 1 athlete to coach ratio shall be maintained.
  3. In addition, accredited programs and GOC’s must comply with the following minimum standards for medical facilities and safety precautions at the sites of competitions (in addition to the sport-specific requirements of the Sports Rules), unless SOI grants written authorization to a particular accredited program or GOC to depart from one or more of these requirements in a specific instance.
  4. Minimum Medical Facilities at Large Competitions:
    1. A qualified emergency medical technician must be in attendance or readily available at all times.
    2. A licensed medical professional must be on-site or on immediate call at all times during the competition.
    3. All first aid areas must be clearly identified, adequately equipped, and staffed by a qualified emergency medical technician for the duration of the event.
    4. An ambulance, resuscitator and other appropriate medical equipment, particularly equipment for handling seizures, must be readily available at all times.
  5. Minimum Safety Precautions at Competitions:
    1. Adequate precautions must be taken to avoid exposing athletes to sunburn, hypothermia, or other conditions or illnesses caused by exposure to the elements.
    2. Special precautions must be taken when holding competitions at high altitudes, including providing training recommendations for athletes before the competition and equipping the competition venues with oxygen tanks.
    3. Ample water or other liquids must be provided for athletes throughout the competition, and athletes should be encouraged to take appropriate water breaks.
    4. Special precautions must be taken to insure that each participant received any medications that have been prescribed for his/her use.
    5. Competition organizers, officials and coaches must take into account the cardiovascular effect and level of strenuousness of a sport when setting the competition schedule for that sport, taking into account the length of competition, weather conditions, the physical ability of the participants, and the need for adequate rest periods. In general, athletes should be given adequate time between trials, finals and competitions, and teams should be given adequate time between the end of one competition and the next round of competition.
    6. Protective eyewear is required for monocular athletes participating in dynamic reactive sports (e.g., basketball, volleyball, softball) and strongly recommended for athletes who wear street glasses and participate in these activities.
    7. Protective headgear must be worn by athletes when participating in the following sports: cycling, equestrian, floor hockey, softball (for batters and base runners), and alpine skiing.
    8. Protective Kevlar neck guard is required for speed skating.

Incident Reporting

SOTX is interested in identifying the causes of injuries and accidents so that preventative actions may be taken to reduce or eliminate potential dangers. Part of this process is the reporting of all injuries or potential injuries on the incident report form. An incident report form (Special Olympics First Report of Accident/Incident) must be completed in its entirety for each occurrence of a physical accident or incident that may result in injury to an athlete, coach, volunteer, spectator or physical property damage. The First Report Accident/Incident form is available from the area director or responsible SOTX staff person at all Special Olympics functions, competitions or training activities.

Accident Reporting Procedure

  • The incident report form must be completed, then reviewed and signed by a SOTX staff person verifying that the incident occurred as reported.
  • The incident report form must be completed even if no medical treatment is required.
  • If the incident involves a vehicle which is being used on official SOTX business, then the Special Olympics Automobile Loss Report is also required to be completed in its entirety.
  • The form is submitted to the staff person designated at each venue and to the area office.
  • If the incident results in an injury, and medical costs are incurred, a Special Olympics claim form will be forwarded by the insurance company directly to the injured party.
  • Claim forms will not be accepted by the insurance company without a completed incident report.

Special Olympics Accident Insurance Coverage

Special Olympics provides secondary insurance coverage in the event of accidental injury which necessitates medical attention during a Special Olympics event. Those insured under the policy are all members of Special Olympics, Inc. and Special Olympics programs, collectively and independently, including participants, officials, coaches, chaperones, supervisors and other volunteers whose names are on file with the policy holder. Special Olympics coverage is secondary, meaning that claims are only considered after payment is made by any other insurance coverage.

The athlete, coach, volunteer, spectator or damaged property owner must first submit all medical bills to their own accident insurance company. If unpaid balances remain after processing by the primary insurance company, a claim may be submitted through Special Olympics insurance. If the injured party does not have any other insurance coverage, the claim initially may be submitted to Special Olympics insurance.

If injuries are suffered while participating in a Special Olympics event and within 60 days from the date of the accident, the insured shall require medical or surgical treatment, including hospitalization and the services of registered nurses or licensed nurses, but excluding dental care, the insurance company will pay the actual costs thereof in excess of the deductible amount (if any), but not more than the stated maximum medical indemnity of $10,000, incurred within one year from the date of the first such treatment.

Coverage is provided for fainting, heat stroke and exhaustion, and any accident where epilepsy or a seizure may be a contributing factor. Coverage is also provided for ambulance service. No medical indemnity shall be payable on account of expenses incurred for eyeglasses, including prescriptions thereof. With respect to dental care, the insurance company will pay the actual cost in excess of the deductible amount (if any), but not more than $10,000, incurred within one year from the date of accident for dental care required on account of injury to or loss of natural teeth resulting from such injuries, including replacement of such teeth, but excluding dental x-rays, provided the aggregate payment of medical surgical and dental treatment required on account of all injuries resulting from one accident shall not exceed the maximum medical indemnity of $10,000.

The insurance under this policy shall not apply:

  • The cost of medical or surgical treatment or nursing services rendered by any person employed or retained by the policy holder.
  • Any loss by 1) abdominal hernia, however caused; 2) bacterial infections (except pyrogenic infections that occur with and through an accidental cut or wound); 3) any form of disease; 4) war or any act of war, whether declared or not; 5) intentionally self-inflicted injury or suicide; 6) injuries covered under any worker's compensation act or similar law.

Claims Filing Procedure

To submit a claim to Special Olympics insurance:

  • A Special Olympics incident report must be on file with the insurance company in order for a claim to be processed.
  • If medical treatment is necessary, first file all claims with the primary insurance carrier, the injured party's regular insurance.
  • If unpaid balances remain after processing by the primary insurance company, complete the claim form provided by Special Olympics Texas and submit all bills and responses from the primary insurance carrier to American Specialty Insurance Co.

During area, regional and chapter events, the medical information for each athlete will be available at the site of competition. This information, attached to all entry forms, will facilitate the process of completing the incident report and will assist emergency personnel in providing the proper treatment. It is the coach's responsibility to obtain this information from the event or meet director in case of an emergency.

Gun and Weapons Policy

To the fullest extent permitted by law, Special Olympics Texas prohibits concealed handguns and open carry of handguns, and all weapons (other types of guns, knives, etc.) at all Special Olympics Texas practices, competitions, offices, events and functions.

Drone Policy

Out of safety concerns for athletes, coaches, volunteers and spectators at Special Olympics Texas practices, events and competitions, Special Olympics Texas prohibits the operation or use of drones, unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) or unmanned aerial systems (UASs) for photography or other use during our practices, events and competitions.


Section I:
Health and Safety

Preventing Physical, Emotional and Sexual Abuse of Special Olympics Athletes

As a Special Olympics volunteer, your efforts are critical to achieve the Special Olympics mission and ensure that all athletes have a positive, safe and rewarding experience in Special Olympics.

These guidelines are designed to protect athletes and volunteers by providing information on how to prevent emotional, sexual and physical abuse of athletes. Please take a moment to review this information carefully and ask SOTX staff if you have any questions.

Preventing Physical Abuse of Athletes

  • Do not use corporal punishment including spanking, hitting, slapping or other forms of physical discipline. Any discipline techniques used should be constructive and positive.
  • Do not withhold water or food from athletes as a form of punishment. To avoid dehydration, water should be available for athletes during practice sessions, especially strenuous ones, and during competition.
  • Only medications that have been prescribed by the athlete’s physician should be dispensed to that athlete, and then only as indicated on his or her athlete medical form signed by either a parent or legal guardian.
  • Check to make sure water for bathing is not too hot.

Preventing Emotional Abuse of Athletes

  • Do not use profanity or otherwise curse at athletes for their performance or behavior. Athletes are not to be threatened or intimidated for any purpose including attempts at improving athletic performance or for controlling behavior.
  • Treat all athletes with courtesy and respect.
  • Do not use demeaning nicknames or other negative or abusive language.

Preventing Sexual Abuse of Athletes

  • Have at least two volunteers present to supervise activities such as changing into team uniforms, showering and using toilet facilities.
  • When speaking privately to an athlete, volunteers should find a place out of earshot but within sight of others.
  • Hugs between Special Olympics athletes and volunteers should be open to observation(not secretive) and be respectful of limits set by the athlete.
  • Avoid touching areas normally covered by swimsuits: breasts, buttocks and groin. Kissing on the lips and seductive massaging is not permitted (massaging pursuant to an injury or strain is permitted, but should be open to observation by others).
  • If an athlete attempts to initiate inappropriate physical contact with a volunteer, that volunteer should identify the objectionable behavior; explain that it makes him/her feel uncomfortable; and suggest more appropriate ways to communicate feelings such as “high fives” or handshakes.
  • When Special Olympics events require athletes to stay overnight, the gender, age and developmental levels of the athletes should be taken into consideration when making room assignments. Athletes should also be assigned sleeping rooms with athletes of similar size and intellectual functioning. In addition, male and female athletes require separate accommodations, as well as need chaperones of their own gender.
  • For all events requiring an overnight stay, the SOTX ratio of four athletes to one adult is required by gender as well, and any minor Unified Sports® partners (17 years old or younger) need to be counted with the athletes. For example, if a delegation has six male athletes, three male minor Unified Sports® partners, and five female athletes, four chaperones are needed – three male chaperones and two female chaperones.
  • It is always helpful to have a sleeping chart, clearly marking which athletes are sleeping where.
  • Delegation chaperones should be assigned to protect athletes anytime they are in the sleeping quarters, by ensuring that the athletes are in their assigned rooms and that any unauthorized individuals are kept out of the athletes’ sleeping quarters.
  • Volunteers can assist Special Olympics staff by knowing where athletes are at all times when the athletes are in the care and custody of Special Olympics.
  • All the rules of behavior should be clearly explained to the athletes before each road trip, no matter the length of the trip. Language used should be simple, but explicit.
  • Information regarding trip (itinerary, hotel info, cell phone numbers for delegation leads, etc.) should be provided to all parents, guardians or caregivers prior to departing on the trip.

Identifying Signs of Abuse

In addition to statements by the athlete, there may be physical or behavioral indicators of abuse.

Physical indicators include questionable injuries such as bruises, burns or lacerations in the soft tissue areas of an athlete’s body. Bruises change color during the healing process, thereby indicating that the injuries happened on more than one occasion. Injuries to genital areas may indicate sexual abuse: for example, cigarette burns on the inside of the upper leg or on the buttocks. Tether marks or rope burns and abrasions caused by tying wrists, ankles, or neck are also indicators of probable abuse.

Some athletes’ injuries are a consequence of athletic competition and the location of the injury may indicate whether the injury was due to abuse or competition. Injuries that happen during competition are most likely to be on the shins, knees, elbows, etc. They are less likely to be on the abdomen, across the back, on the backs of the legs or on facial cheeks.

If you notice that any athlete has been injured (regardless of the delegation), please ask how the injury happened. Could the incident described by the athlete have resulted in the injury you observed?

Reporting Suspected Abuse

The priority is to protect the athlete from further abuse.

When an athlete discloses possible abuse to you or you have reasonable grounds to suspect that an athlete has been abused, you should also take two steps:

Step One: Contact the Authorities

Abuse, neglect and exploitation are against the law in Texas and so is failure to report it. If you suspect a child, a person 65 years or older, or an adult with disabilities has been abused or mistreated, you are required to report it to the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services or to a law enforcement agency. You are required to make a report immediately, and you can report your suspicions to the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services on their Texas Abuse/Neglect Hotline toll-free at 800.252.5400.

Step Two: Contact Special Olympics Texas

Please notify your Special Olympics Texas area staff person immediately. If you cannot contact your area staff, please call the chapter office at 800.876.5646, ext. 2933.During both calls, please inform the person you notify of the actions you have taken to protect the athlete. In addition, the athlete should be encouraged to report the abuse to the proper authorities as well.

Disclosure of Misconduct or Inappropriate Behavior

It is critical that behavior deemed inappropriate is disclosed to SOTX staff as soon as the behavior is witnessed or when there is an awareness that it has occurred. Below is a chart that will identify some guidelines for which behaviors are important to disclose and what steps SOTX will take related to the level of severity. Use the Disclosure of Misconduct or Inappropriate Behavior Form to divulge information.

By following these guidelines, we are able to protect not only our athletes, but the integrity of the umbrella insurance coverage that is in place for all Special Olympics programs. The coverage is tied together such that one situation can jeopardize the coverage for every state.

The below referenced behaviors occurring outside an SOTX event can also be taken into consideration with regards to disciplinary action.

Level Examples of Behaviors Disclose or Not Action Taken by SOTX
1
  • Not following directions
  • Stealing from a coach or an athlete
  • Leaving the premises
  • Verbal abusiveness towards a coach or another athlete
No, but incident needs to be documented and filed by the HoD.
Continued behavior at Level 1 should result in progressive discipline.
None
2
  • Destruction of property
  • Consensual sexual contact during a Special Olympics training or competition
  • Aggressive behavior
  • Slapping or hitting another athlete or coach, no injury
Incident should be reported on the Disclosure of Misconduct or Inappropriate Behavior Form. SOTX may notify American Specialty depending on the issue. Athlete may be suspended until an investigation is completed. Area Sports Management Team will meet and determine consequences associated with the behavior.
3
  • Indecency with no physical contact
  • Repeated overt sexual contact at a Special Olympics training or competition which is deemed consensual or not, showing a pattern of behavior
Must immediately disclose regardless of when and where the incident occurs. Incident should be reported on the Disclosure of Misconduct or Inappropriate Behavior Form. Go directly to the area staff or call either the Vice President of Field Services or the Vice President of Shared Services. SOTX will work with American Specialty to investigate and will coordinate public relations around the incident. Athlete is automatically suspended pending the outcome of the investigation. The appropriate Management Team will meet and determine the consequences associated with the behavior.
4
  • Sexual Assault
  • Bodily assault that results in serious injury
  • Arson
Must immediately disclose regardless of when or where the incident occurs. Incident should be reported on the Disclosure of Misconduct or Inappropriate Behavior Form. Go directly to the area staff or call either the Vice President of Field Services or the Vice President of Shared Services. SOTX will work with American Specialty to investigate and will coordinate public relations around the incident. Athlete is automatically suspended pending the outcome of the investigation. A letter will come directly from the chapter office. Consequences associated with the behavior will be handled directly by the chapter office.

Form: Disclosure of Misconduct or Inappropriate Behavior

A Guide for Parents and Care Providers to Help Keep Our Athletes Safe

Here at Special Olympics, we believe that EVERYONE, including staff, volunteers, parents, caregivers and coaches has a role to play in ensuring the safety of Special Olympics athletes. We take this responsibility seriously and have implemented a number of steps to help make participating in Special Olympics not only rewarding, but also safe.

This quick reference brochure is just that, a brochure intended to be supplemented by the detailed Guide for Parents and Caregivers to Keep our Athletes Safe, which is available from your Special Olympics Program. We strongly encourage parents and caregivers to review the Guide for Parents and Caregivers in addition to this brochure for more detailed information. Parents and caregivers are also encouraged to discuss the content of this guide with their athletes to help their athletes distinguish appropriate behavior from inappropriate behavior.

We know that we cannot safeguard our athletes without YOUR help! We need the involvement of others, including parents and caregivers in order to be successful.

What is Special Olympics Doing?

  • Volunteer Screening: Registered Volunteers who meet certain criteria, including having close contact with athletes, are screened using a national criminal background check vendor.
  • Protective Behaviors Training: Registered Volunteers who have close contact with Special Olympics athletes are required to complete the Protective Behaviors training, which highlights possible signs of physical, sexual and emotional abuse so that all volunteers are active in helping us achieve our ultimate goal of protecting Special Olympics athletes from harm or abuse.
  • Dating Policy: Special Olympics prohibits any staff member or volunteer (excluding spouses of Special Olympics athletes and Special Olympics athletes who are "day of event" volunteers) from dating or having a sexual relationship with any Special Olympics athlete. Exceptions may be considered by the Program’s Chief Executive Officer for athletes who are also volunteers and/or staff members.

How Can I Help?

(1) Know what to expect from Special Olympics.

The following is a very brief overview of some of the types of official activities that are available to Special Olympics athletes (please consult your local Special Olympics Program for a full list):

  • Local Level Team Practices Competitions: These practices and competitions are organized by your local Special Olympics Program or coach (individual one-on-one practices fall outside the normal scope of Special Olympics activities). Athletes are expected to arrive at the practice location at the appointed practice time and leave immediately following the conclusion of the practice, as volunteers/coaches are only present during the appointed practice times.
  • State/National/Regional/World Games: Larger events organized by your Special Olympics. Program State office or Special Olympics, Inc. may require travel and/or an overnight stay(s). Parents and caregivers should request details regarding travel and housing accommodations, when applicable, and address any concerns prior to the event with their local Program office.
  • Healthy Athletes®: Special Olympics athletes receive a variety of health screenings and services in a series of clinics conducted in a welcoming, fun environment. Parents/caregivers/athletes will be required to consent to such screening, if interested.
  • Unified Sports®: This initiative combines approximately equal numbers of Special Olympics athletes and athletes without intellectual disabilities (Partners) on sports teams for training and competition. One outcome of Unified Sports activities may be new friendships that extend beyond official Special Olympics activities. Parents and caregivers should use their own discretion in determining an appropriate friendship level outside of official Special Olympics activities.
  • Project Unify®: This initiative is an education-based project that uses sports and education programs to activate young people to develop school communities where all youth are agents of change; fostering respect, dignity and advocacy for people with intellectual disabilities. Parents and caregivers should use their own discretion in determining an appropriate level of participation/friendships outside of official Special Olympics activities.
  • Athlete Leadership Programs: These programs allow athletes to explore opportunities for participation in various leadership community roles. Parents and caregivers should use their own discretion in determining appropriate community roles/activities outside of official Special Olympics activities.
  • Fundraising Activities and Events: It is difficult to define "typical" fundraising involvement that parents or care providers should anticipate. It is not a requirement of Special Olympics that athletes participate in fundraising, and athletes/parents/care givers must use their own discretion in determining if and how an athlete decides to become involved in these efforts or events.

(2) Watch for “Red Flag” Behaviors:

  • While we cannot make a generalization that will address every possible scenario, there are certain behaviors that should raise a red flag. These include, but are not limited to:
  • Inappropriate gifts, trips, outings, or other gestures of affection from a volunteer;
  • Invitations for sleepovers at a volunteer’s house;
  • Invitations for social events at a volunteer’s house that do not include, or specifically exclude, parents or caregivers;
  • Excessive displays of interest in a particular athlete or group of athletes; and
  • A Volunteer’s interest in an athlete outside the normal scope of a Special Olympics activity.


Note: Each situation is different, so it is important for parents/guardians to evaluate the proposed activity on a case-by-case basis, which may include a call to your local Special Olympics office to confirm the validity of the activity, and determine whether it is appropriate for the athlete.

(3) Report Suspicious Behavior

See “What if I have a Concern” section in this brochure.
How do I Identify a Sexual Predator?

Identifying a sexual predator is very difficult and therefore, parents/guardians should be extremely cautious of those “red flag” activities, behaviors and characteristics outlined in this brochure.
Special Olympics has undertaken steps to check the backgrounds of certain volunteers and to educate registered volunteers, staff and parents/caregivers of “red flag” behaviors, but everyone should be on the lookout for inappropriate behavior. Special Olympics fosters friendships and creates opportunities for athletes to become involved in activities that may extend outside of Special Olympics. It is important for parents and caregivers to be aware of two important facts:

(1) Only activities organized, conducted and sponsored by Special Olympics qualify as official Special Olympics activities (not those activities outside of Special Olympics that may result from friendships made through Special Olympics).

(2) Sexual predators often target vulnerable populations, can come from any background, can be male or female, are often generally “likeable” with warm personalities, and may have limited relationships with other adults. In other words, pay attention and notify Special Olympics if you think a behavior is a “red flag” or inappropriate because there is no one way to identify a person with bad intentions.

What if I have a Concern?

If you believe a Special Olympics volunteer is engaging in activities that do not fit within the expected scope of Special Olympics, contact your Special Olympics State Program office to discuss the situation.

If you believe that a Special Olympics athlete has been abused, contact law enforcement in addition to your local Special Olympics Program office, as law enforcement has the expertise to investigate such allegations.

Heat Exposure

Special Olympics practices, competitions, and activities often are conducted outdoors, and we would like to provide some safety procedures to help keep everyone safe and cool.

Following the simple risk management techniques outlined below can help prevent heat stroke injuries and illnesses:

  • Provide consistent breaks/rest periods for all athletes and coaches.
  • Make available shade/fans/cooling systems, if possible. During periods when athletes are not participating, but may be waiting on the sidelines, athletes should not sit or stand in sunshine or sit in cars without air conditioning for extended periods of time.
  • Ensure there is a continuing supply of fresh drinking water at all outdoor practices and competitions.
  • Have access to medical personnel on site, if possible.
  • Promote the use of sunscreen and have it available.
  • Ensure that athletes are wearing clothing that is loose fitting, light colored and cotton, if possible, including hats.
  • Consider the Heat Index (temperature and humidity combined) and suspend competition (or practice) if heat conditions become overly oppressive or if several athletes are laboring or show any symptoms listed below.
  • Avoid activities in the early and mid afternoon hours (11:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. is usually the hottest time of day).

Coaches/volunteers should be alert to the symptoms of overheating and dehydration:

  • increased thirst
  • headache
  • dry mouth and swollen tongue
  • weakness
  • dizziness
  • confusion
  • sluggishness
  • vomiting
  • inability to sweat

Anyone experiencing the above symptoms should seek medical attention immediately.

To increase the fluid intake of a person who has become dehydrated or is beginning to show any of the above symptoms, have that person try the following:

  • Sip small amounts of water (too much water too fast is not effective and may be harmful).
  • Drink carbohydrate/electrolyte-containing drinks (e.g., PowerAde or Pedialyte). Carbonated soft drinks or drinks with caffeine should not be consumed.
  • Suck on popsicles made from juices or sports drinks.
  • Suck on ice chips.
  • Sip through a straw.
  • Cool water-soaked towels around the back of the neck may provide some relief.

Sports Injuries

Blood-Borne Contagious Infection Carriers

Special Olympics, Inc. has issued the following position regarding blood-borne contagious infection carriers:

  • It is not necessary nor justifiable to discriminate against any individual having ordinary behavior (behavior that does not pose a personal risk) on the basis that they are carriers of a blood-borne contagious infection.
  • Under casual social interaction, carriers of a blood-borne contagious infection pose no danger to those around them; therefore, it is neither necessary nor justifiable to exclude them from participation in Special Olympics activities, nor isolate them from other participants in dormitories or sports competition.
  • Participants may have a blood-borne contagious infection that is new and unknown. Therefore, universal precautions should be used for every exposure to anyone’s blood, saliva or other bodily fluid.
  • Special Olympics, Inc. recommends that blood and body fluid precautions be consistently used for all people regardless of their blood-borne infection status. This practice is referred to as “universal blood and body fluid precautions” or “universal precautions.”

Precautions for the Prevention of Transmission of Infectious Diseases

Since medical history and examination cannot reliably identify individuals infected with HIV or other diseases, blood and body fluid precautions should be used consistently. This approach, recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), referred to as “universal precautions,” should be used in the care of all individuals participating in Special Olympics (athletes, coaches, volunteers and staff).

Important: While the following procedures should be followed as closely as possible, emergency medical care involving blood or mouth-to-mouth contact should not be delayed due to the lack of gloves, towels or mouthpieces.

Towels

  • Use towels to place a barrier between yourself and blood or body fluids containing visible blood when there is no time to put on gloves. Cloth or paper towels are acceptable as long as they provide an effective barrier (thick and absorbent) to protect against direct contact with blood. Towels should be disposed of in a covered, plastic-lined container. Wash hands after handling soiled towels or linens.

Gloves

  • Gloves are required in the following instances:
    • Whenever you will be in contact with blood or body fluids containing visible blood.
    • Whenever you are diapering a person with diarrhea.
    • If you have cuts, open wounds or lesions on your hands and you will be providing services directly to an individual, such as diapering or first aid, involving body fluids.
    • Change gloves between procedures which require gloves. Dispose of gloves in a plastic bag and then discard in a covered, lined container.

Hand Washing

  • Hands must be washed immediately and thoroughly:
    • If contaminated directly with blood or body fluids (urine, feces, vomit or mucous).
    • Before and after each diaper change.
    • Immediately after gloves are removed.
    • Before eating or handling food.
    • After using the restroom.
  • Accepted hand washing procedures are as follows:
    • Use soap and running water.
    • Rub your hands vigorously for 15 seconds.
    • Wash all skin surfaces including:
      • Backs of hands
      • Wrists
      • Between fingers
      • Under fingernails
    • Rinse well.
    • Dry hands with a paper towel. Turn the water off with a paper towel – not with your bare hands.
    • Any soap product is acceptable. If using bar soap, be sure that it is kept in a self-draining soap dish.

Procedure for Cleaning and Disinfecting Environmental Surfaces

Studies have shown that viruses, including the HIV virus, are rapidly inactivated after being exposed to commonly used chemical germicides at concentrations that are much lower than used in practice. A diluted solution of household bleach should be prepared in the ratio of 1 to 100 which is the same as two tablespoons chlorine bleach to one gallon of water. This solution can be used for general cleaning and disinfecting purposes, and can be placed in spray bottles. All containers with bleach-water solution must be stored in a secure location.

Cleaning the Surfaces of Mats, Work and Play Areas

  • Wipe surfaces with a solution of chlorine bleach using a 1 to 100 ratio, dispensed from a spray bottle. Wipe or rinse with clear water.

Cleaning Athletic Equipment and Toys

  • An easy procedure for cleaning athletic equipment and plastic toys is simply to immerse them in a chlorine bleach and water solution. Then immerse them in a container of water or spray to rinse. It is important to rinse the equipment so that the cleaning solution will not dry on the surface. They can be air dried. Porous equipment, such as wooden bats, may be dipped and rinsed immediately, but not soaked.

Laundry

  • Standard laundry procedures are acceptable for preventing the spread of infectious diseases.

Trash

  • All waste should be placed in bags and tied securely for removal.

Mouthpieces for Use in Performing CPR

  • Use mouthpieces for mouth-to-mouth resuscitation. Mouthpieces must be available for use in areas in which there may be a resuscitation. To disinfect the mouthpieces, wash in soap and water and disinfect in a chlorine bleach and water solution.

Procedure for Cleaning and Decontaminating Spills of Blood or Other Body Fluids

A diluted solution of household chlorine bleach and water is also acceptable for use in cleaning spills of body fluids. The solution must be made daily and containers with bleach water solution must be stored in secure locations. Gloves must be worn for this procedure.

  • Remove any visible matter with disposable towels.
  • Spray the surface with chlorine bleach solution. Leave the solution on the area for 10 minutes.
  • Rinse with water and wipe dry.
  • Dispose of gloves and paper towels in a plastic bag and discard into a covered, lined container.

Aquatics Safety Standards

All Special Olympics teams and athletes must abide by the Aquatics Minimum Safety Standards while participating in recreational swimming.

First Aid Kits

All Special Olympics teams must have access to a first aid kit at all trainings, clinics, competitions, etc. All first aid kits should include:

Item Example Minimum Amount
Hydrocortisone cream (1%) Benadryl, Cortaid 1 – 1 oz. tube
Antibacterial cream Neosporin 1 – 1 oz. tube
Ammonia capsules 10 capsules
Sports Cream Icy-Hot, Flex 454 1 – 1 oz. tube
Ammonia wipes 10 packets
Saline eyewash Bausch & Lomb 1 – 6 oz. bottle
Eyewash Visine, Murine 1 – 1 oz. bottle
Hydrogen peroxide   2 – 8 oz. bottle
Lip Balm Carmex, Chapstick 1 – 2 oz. bottle
Cotton swabs Q-tips 25 sticks
Bandages Curad, Band-Aid 25 bandages
Bandages for knuckles Johnson & Johnson (J&J) 14 bandages
Gauze pads 4” x 4” J&J, Kendall 50 sterile pads
Gauze rolls 2”, 3” and 4” J&J, Kendall 5 rolls each size
Elastic wraps 3”,4” and 6” Ace 3 rolls each size
Triangular bandages Johnson & Johnson 4 bandages
Tape 1” and 2” Johnson & Johnson 2 rolls each size
Athletic tape in 2” Mueller 4 rolls
Elastic tape in 2” Cobann 4 rolls
Sealed plastic bags, quart size GladLock 10 bags
Sanitary napkins Maxi-Pads 4 pads
Tweezers Revlon 1 pair
Fingernail clippers Revlon 1 pair
Bandage scissors, 5” Revlon 1 pair
Non Latex glove   1 pair
Mouth Mask   1 mask

Medications (prescription and nonprescription) will not be dispensed without the written consent of the parent and/or guardian of the athlete. If permission is given to dispense medication, it shall be in its original container with the athlete’s name, date, directions and physician’s name. Medications dispensed will be limited to routine oral ingestion not requiring special knowledge or skills of coaches and/or chaperones.

Special Olympics encourages coaches interested in additional information to contact the American Red Cross and go through First Aid and/or CPR Training which counts toward continuing education requirements.

Website Sources

First Aid for Seizures

(Convulsions, generalized tonic-clonic, grand mal)

Although most seizures end naturally without emergency treatment, a seizure in someone who does not have epilepsy could be a sign of serious illness. Call for medical assistance if:

  • seizure lasts for more than five minutes.
  • no “epilepsy/seizure disorder” I.D.
  • slow recovery, a second seizure, or difficult breathing afterwards.
  • pregnancy or other medical I.D.
  • any signs of injury.

If seizure lasts more then 5 minutes call 911

Handling Partial Seizures

Simple partial seizures don’t require any special response except to recognize what’s happening and be supportive when the seizure is over.

Handling Complex Partial Seizures – the following steps may help:

  • Reassure others. Explain that any unusual behavior is a temporary condition brought on by a seizure and that it will end in a few minutes.
  • Remove hazards or anything from the area that might injure someone who doesn’t know where he is or what he is doing.
  • Don’t restrain the person during a complex partial seizure, especially if he or she is already agitated and confused. Efforts to restrain may produce an unconscious aggressive response.
  • Guide gently away from or block access to anything that could be dangerous to someone in a semi-conscious state, like an open fire or a busy street.
  • Stay back until the episode has ended if the person appears obviously agitated or belligerent.
  • Be reassuring and helpful as awareness returns. Remember that people may get back their ability to hear and understand before they are able to speak again. Confusion, depression, agitation, irritability, belligerence or drowsiness are all possible after effects of seizures.

Injury Prevention and Treatment

What can I do to help prevent injuries?

There are two factors in preventing injuries that you should be aware of: providing a safe environment for athletes and spectators, and creating a safe work environment.

In addition to providing a safe environment for the athletes you train, you also must do your part to provide volunteers and workers with an appropriate and safe environment in which to contribute. One aspect of a safe workplace is to train personnel in proper work techniques, such as lifting, workspace ergonomics, use of tools and machinery, and defensive driving. Personnel need to become aware of workplace dangers and strive to minimize the risks, either through safe work practices or the prompt correction of hazardous situations.

What is medical emergency preparedness, and how do I prepare?

Answer the following questions to assess your preparedness for emergency medical response. The answer to all questions should be “yes.” If an answer is “no” you should take steps to address the situation.

Medical Emergency Awareness

  1. Are coaches and chaperones aware of athletes’ pre-existing medical problems, such as diabetes, epilepsy or allergic reaction to a bee sting?
  2. Do coaches and chaperones have ready access to the Athlete/Parent Release Forms which give permission for medical treatment in case of emergency?
  3. Do coaches and chaperones have these waivers available at each of the training sessions and competitions?
  4. Is a well-stocked first aid kit also available at the training sessions and competitions?
  5. Have coaches been instructed how to use the materials in the first aid kit?
  6. If a medical emergency occurs at a training site, do coaches know the location of the nearest telephone to call the appropriate emergency number? If that phone is in a locked room, do they have a key? Is a custodian on duty and easily found? If the phone is out of order, do they know the location of the next available phone? If it is a switchboard phone, do they know how to get an outside line?
  7. If a medical emergency occurs at an event or training site, are there adequate assistant coaches or volunteers available to stay with other team members while medical emergency procedures are taken?
  8. If a medical emergency occurs at a competition or event, does each coach and volunteer know the emergency plan: who to contact, location of contact, method of communication and follow-up procedures? Has an emergency plan been developed, and has it been included in the pre-event training of each volunteer?
  9. If paramedics have to be called, will they find locked gates blocking access to the injured athlete? If so, do coaches or volunteers have a key for those gates or a way to get one quickly?
  10. Do coaches or chaperones have a list of the names and phone numbers of the parents or group home providers to call in the event of a serious injury?
  11. Where is the nearest hospital to the training or competition site? Is that where an ambulance will take the injured athlete?
  • * If the answer to any of these questions is “no,” coaches or volunteers are not prepared to deal with a medical emergency at an event or training site.

Recommended Emergency Medical Procedures

  1. Do not move an athlete who you believe may be seriously injured, especially in the case of a head, neck or back injury.
  2. A responsible person must stay with the injured athlete at all times and have the athlete’s Medical Release Form available.
  3. For a medical emergency in the United States, a responsible person should call 911 for the paramedics as quickly as possible, and go to meet them at the site entrance.
  4. Contact the parent or care provider as soon as possible.

Information to give the emergency operator:

  • Caller’s name
  • Name of site and location of its intersecting streets
  • Injured athlete’s location at the site
  • Type of injury

Care for Common Minor Injuries

It is the coach’s job to maintain as safe an environment as possible. It is strongly recommended that coaches have certification in CPR and First Aid or that volunteers be recruited who already have first aid training, medical athletic training or emergency care certification. Athlete medical forms should be reviewed prior to the start of practice and available at all trainings and competitions. There should be a plan for emergencies. Using the Coach’s Safety Checklist will help to prevent injury by assuring adequate supervision, equipment, facility, warm-up and stretching.

When an injury does occur, stay calm, and administer only basic first aid. When in doubt, or when more care is needed, consult the athlete’s family and a physician.

Treating Floor Burns, Strains, Contusions, Minor Bumps and Bruises

  • R - Rest; stop any pain-causing activity.
  • I - Ice for 24-36 hours after the injury.
  • C - Compress with elastic bandage if needed.
  • E - Elevate to avoid edema and subsequent swelling.

Conditions Requiring Medical Attention

  • Significant swelling or dislocation of an extremity
  • Obvious deformity of an arm or leg
  • Severe pain
  • Inability to bear weight on a lower extremity
  • Lacerations with or without fractures.
  • Significant swelling of a joint (e.g., elbow, wrist, knee, ankle)
  • Loss of sensation in an extremity

Conditions Mandating That Only Experienced Medical Personnel Move the Athlete

  • Loss of consciousness
  • Neck or back injury with loss of sensation or motor power in arms or legs
  • Head injury with disorientation and/or visual changes

If an arm or leg may be broken — that is, if it looks deformed or has major swelling and tenderness — treat it like a break. Take the athlete to a physician.

Always have someone familiar with basic life support and cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) at every training session. Even though the possibility of cardiac arrest is much greater in the spectator section than with the athletes, it is always present. Initial measures include:

  • Establishing unresponsiveness
  • Calling out for assistance
  • Positioning the victim

Rehabilitation/Treatment for Chronic Injuries

Blisters

  • Keep pressure off new blisters using a felt “doughnut.”
  • Where the skin is torn, use extreme care.
  • Keep it clean, and cut skin halfway around the perimeter without removing the skin.
  • Apply antiseptic ointment and a sterile dressing.
  • When underlying tissue toughens, cut away the remaining flap of skin.

Abrasions and contusions (floor burns and deeper bruises)

  • Keep them clean.
  • Expose them to the air when possible.
  • Keep them dry.
  • Encourage gentle activity.
  • Chronic rest for 5-7 days.
  • Ice for pain.
  • Stretch related muscles to strengthen them.
  • Move gently, stopping at the point of pain.
  • Exercise to strengthen afflicted area as it heals.

Special Olympics Texas Concussion Awareness and Safety Recognition Policy

Objective

It is Special Olympics Texas’ intent to take steps to help ensure the health and safety of all Special Olympics Texas participants. All Special Olympics Texas participants should remember that safety comes first and should take reasonable steps to help minimize the risks for concussion or other serious brain injuries.

Defining a Concussion

A concussion is defined by the Centers for Disease Control as a type of traumatic brain injury caused by a bump, blow, or jolt to the head as well as serial, cumulative hits to the head. Concussions can also occur from a blow to the body that causes the head and brain to move quickly back and forth—causing the brain to bounce around or twist within the skull. Although concussions are usually not life-threatening, their effects can be serious and therefore proper attention must be paid to individuals suspected of sustaining a concussion.

Suspected or Confirmed Concussion

Effective January 1, 2015, a participant who is suspected of sustaining a concussion in a practice, game or competition shall be removed from practice, play or competition at that time. If a qualified medical professional (advanced practice nurse, athletic trainer, physician’s assistant or physician) is available on-site to render an evaluation, that person shall have final authority as to the removal or return to play of the participant. If applicable, the participant’s parent or guardian should be made aware that the participant is suspected of sustaining a concussion.

Return to Play

A participant who has been removed from practice, play or competition due to a suspected concussion may not participate in Special Olympics Texas sports activities until either of the following occurs

  • (1) at least seven (7) consecutive days have passed since the participant was removed from play and a currently licensed, qualified medical professional provides written clearance for the participant to return to practice, play and competition or
  • (2) a currently licensed, qualified medical professional determines that the participant did not suffer a concussion and provides written clearance for the participant to return to practice play immediately.
Written clearance in either of the scenarios above shall be turned into the Area office and will become a permanent record for future tracking.  The information will be entered into GMS.

Frequency of Training

Concussion awareness training must be completed by all Coaches at least once every three years, As of January 1, 2015, new coaches to Special Olympics Texas will go through the training as part of their certification process. Currently certified coaches will take the training upon renewing their Class A

Volunteer registration

There are two currently approved courses available for Special Olympics Texas coaches and the preferred one is presented free of charge on the National Federation of State High School Coaches Association. The website is: www.nfhslearn.com/courses/38000. Coaches must register and will then have access to all the online trainings. Please make sure you list Special Olympics Texas when filling out the School/Association line.

Communication with Parents and Guardians

The Centers for Disease Control website www.cdc.gov/concussion provides additional resources relative to concussions that may be of interest to participants and their families.  Special Olympics Texas has CDC Concussion Facts Sheets printed in both English and Spanish available on our website at www.sotx.org/getinvolved/coach/concussion.

Inclement Weather Policy

Rain Policy

Decisions on field closures are made as late as possible in order to give the best possible chance for the game to be played, however some decisions are easier than others and therefore it is possible that a field or park maybe closed prior to game day.

Winter Weather Policy

Players are more susceptible to injuries during cold weather, particularly from pulled or torn muscles. Players should be encouraged to wear appropriate clothing to aid body heat retention yet afford adequate movement without creating a safety hazard. As a general rule, training programs will be cancelled if the projected temperature (including wind chill) at the start of training is projected to be below 25 degrees Fahrenheit.

Hot Weather Policy

The risk of heat related illness from vigorous sports activity increases with the temperature. The body generates heat which cannot be dissipated readily when the ambient temperature exceeds 85 degrees F, depending upon the humidity. Hot weather is considered at any point where the Heat Index reaches or exceeds 90. As a general rule, training programs should be reviewed if the heat index at the start of training is projected to be above 95 degrees Fahrenheit. Coaches should exercise caution and provide additional water breaks.

Lightning and Thunder Policy

If inclement weather is forecast, an individual should be designated to monitor the weather forecast and radar during the competition. If the facility being used for competition has a lightning detection system and a facilities policy in place that is more stringent than listed below, the facilities policy will supersede the Special Olympics Texas policy.

If lightening is detected within 8 miles of the practice or competition facility, all coaches, players, referees and spectators are to withdraw from the field and seek proper shelter. No place outside is safe near thunderstorms. The best shelter is a large, fully enclosed, substantially constructed building. A vehicle with a solid metal roof and metal sides is a reasonable second choice.

30 minutes Rule - Wait at least 30 minutes after the last sound of thunder or the last lightning flash before giving the “all clear” signal and resuming normal activity. If thunder is heard or lightning is seen again within that 30-minute time frame, the event will continue to be postponed or officials may deem to cancel the event.

Lightning research has confirmed that consecutive lightning strikes can occur as much as six miles apart. People often do not perceive lightning to be close if it is two miles or more away, but the risk of the next strike being at your location may actually be very high. Many lightning casualties occur in the beginning as a thunderstorm approaches because people ignore these precursors. When thunderstorms are in the area but not overhead, the lightning threat can exist even if it is sunny at your location.


Section J:
Outreach Program

Special Olympics Texas provides sports training and competition for more than 53,000 athletes. However, it is estimated there are more than 600,000 Texans who are eligible to participate in Special Olympics programs. We have much work to do to provide services for individuals who qualify and are interested in participating in Special Olympics. We must all work to ensure that we reach out to those individuals whose lives can be improved through participation in this organization.

Special Olympics Texas needs the efforts of staff, coaches, volunteers and board members to identify, enroll and retain athletes in the Special Olympics family. These efforts are ongoing and involve efforts at the local, area and state levels.

How You Can Help

  • Participate in your area outreach committee. These committees work to identify where potential athletes can be contacted, access local resources and make contacts with schools, agencies, and organizations. The committees develop a recruitment plan to grow participation and retain athletes involved in Special Olympics.
  • Invite your friends to volunteer or coach for Special Olympics Texas. Without coaches and volunteers, we cannot form new teams and opportunities for athletes.
  • Help teams find facilities and resources in your community. Schools, churches, universities, local parks and recreation organizations and YMCA/YWCAs can be great friends to Special Olympics.
  • Encourage athletes to invite their friends to get involved in the organization.
  • Talk to families and encourage their participation. If families are involved and support their athletes, they are more likely to stay involved.
  • Invite new families to come and experience Special Olympics. Build relationships with them and show them the benefits of involvement.
  • Encourage local schools to establish new Special Olympics teams, or to start a Unified Sports® team, Unified Clubs, or sports partnership.
  • Encourage athlete retention by offering age-appropriate sport choices and offering opportunities for athletes to take on new roles through Athlete Leadership Programs (ALPs).
  • Share the Get Into It™ program with schools. Get Into It™ is a free K-12 curriculum targeting general education students to promote an understanding of intellectual disabilities and Special Olympics. Visit getintoit.specialolympics.org for more information.
  • Use the outreach resources available, including the How to Get Started Handbook available online under Get Involved on the SOTX website.
  • Engage Texas schools in Unified Champion Schools (UCS) - Meet in the Middle to foster an inclusive school environment and develop understanding between students with intellectual disabilities and typically developing students.
  • State Outreach Support Services Committee

When Serving in an Outreach Role

  • Emphasize that Special Olympics is not a once-a-year track meet. Share with the public that Special Olympics Texas offers year-round sports training in different sports. Mention the fact that athletes are required to train for a minimum of eight weeks in each sport, prior to competing.
  • Stress that Special Olympics Texas is for people with intellectual disabilities and closely related developmental disabilities. SOTX includes a continuum of programs that provide for athletes of all ability levels:
    • Athletes In Training (AIT)
    • Young Athletes Program (YAP)
    • Motor Activities Training Program (MATP)
    • Individual Sports Skills Competitions
    • Team and Individual Sports Competitions
    • Unified Programs
  • Inform people that Special Olympics Texas offers inclusive programming for athletes to interact with peers who do not have disabilities.
  • Unified Programs allows Special Olympics athletes to train and compete with teammates without disabilities. These teams compete against other Unified teams and often play in community leagues.
  • Partners Clubs and Sports Partnerships are programs that create opportunities for Special Olympics athletes to form friendships and get support from their peers in an atmosphere that fosters mutual respect and fun.
  • Share the benefits of participation in Special Olympics. Athletes develop physical fitness, reinforce fine and gross motor skills, learn social skills through cooperation with teammates, have opportunities for social interaction and friendships, and develop many skills that assist them in their vocational development.
  • Go to the Adult Transition Plan of the SOTX website.
  • Refer older adults leaving school programs to seek continued participation in Special Olympics Texas programs through visiting the SOTX website, requesting information at the "exit" ARD about the Texas Education Agency's transition services and community resources page.

There are many resources available for sharing information about Special Olympics, including fact sheets and brochures on a variety of topics and information at www.sotx.org. For more information on resources available, contact your Area Director or the Director of Outreach and Families at dir_familyoutr.chp@sotx.org or 800.876.5646, ext. 2958.

Young Athletes™

The Special Olympics Young Athletes™ (YA) is an innovative sports play program for children with intellectual disabilities designed to introduce them to the world of sports prior to Special Olympics eligibility at age eight. Involvement in this program can begin as early as age 2 and continue through age 7. The program addresses two levels of play. First, the activities focus on developing fundamental motor tracking and eye-hand coordination play through a variety of developmental activities. Second, it concentrates on applying these physical skills through a sports skills activity program to establish a foundation for sports participation. This foundation will be essential for these Young Athletes as they enter a lifetime of sports with Special Olympics.

The program is also a means to encourage family involvement and participation with their child. It is a great tool for parents of young children to network with one another to share in the struggles and triumphs of having a child with a disability. It also offers the opportunity for parents to share in the success of their future athlete.

Athletes who are eligible to participate in the Young Athletes may not continue to be eligible for Special Olympics competition once they have reached their potential developmental level. If this is the case, the athlete will be able to hold other roles within Special Olympics such as Unified partner or volunteer.

If you would like more information or would like to start a Young Athletes in your area, contact your Area Director or the Director of Outreach and Families at 800.876.5646, ext. 2958 or dir_familyoutr.chp@sotx.org.

All certified YAP facilitators must be a registered SOTX volunteer [must have a current Class A Volunteer Application on file, must have attended General Orientation and Protective Behaviors (in person or online) and must have passed the criminal background check].

A Young Athletes Participation Form will be required for Young Athletes.

A letter to send to parents should also accompany the Participation Form.

Unified Champion Schools

Unified Champion Schools is a national, federal 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 Olympics. Unified Champion Schools has three components:

  • Youth Leadership
  • Unified Programs
  • Whole School Involvement

Unified Champion Schools is for students, teachers, and educators who believe that:

  • There should be more opportunities for young people of all ages and ability levels in schools across the country to make friends and work together for change.
  • Students with intellectual disabilities should become an integral part of and be perceived as assets in their schools and communities.
  • Students without intellectual disabilities can and should increase their knowledge, skills, and comfort in forming social relationships with students with intellectual disabilities and come together to address societal issues.
  • Policy makers and leaders in education should develop policies and support quality practices that encourage positive school climates with safe and nurturing learning environments for all students.

Special Olympics Texas invites schools around the state to participate Unified Champion Schools. Unified Champion Schools is active in more than 100 schools throughout Texas. Unified Champion Schools includes all ages and grade levels, pre-K through 12, and 18 plus. Thousands of Texas students have felt the positive impact of involvement in the program's inclusive leadership activities and Service-Learning projects, including the Spread the Word/Erase the R-word campaign and Unified Sports. For more information, follow us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/SOTXMiM and Twitter at www.twitter.com/SOTXMiM .

Sports Partnerships

The Special Olympics Sports Partnerships concept makes athletes with intellectual disabilities and Special Olympics teams part of the existing sports teams and leagues for athletes without disabilities. All athletes train together but compete against athletes of comparable age and ability.

Special Olympics Sports Partnerships are a way to offer individuals with intellectual disabilities a variety of sports training and competition opportunities at very little cost.

Training and competition are supervised either by the team’s head coach in a particular sport or an assistant coach specifically assigned to coach the Special Olympics teams. The number of coaches needed and stipends for those coaches should follow normal agency policies and procedures.

Athletes without disabilities from existing sports teams should serve as peer coaches, scrimmage teammates and supporters during competition.

Sports Partnerships activities are unique and important because they:

  • Enhance self-esteem.
  • Bring together athletes with and without intellectual disabilities in a setting where all athletes are challenged to improve their skills, and to develop friendships and an understanding of each other’s capabilities through a spirit of equality and team unity.
  • Provide a valuable sports opportunity to individuals with intellectual disabilities who are not presently involved with Special Olympics, especially those with mild intellectual disabilities and those in communities where there are not enough Special Olympics athletes to conduct team sports.
  • Prepare Special Olympics athletes with higher-level skills for participation in school or community sports.

Not every individual with intellectual disabilities is ready to participate in the Special Olympics Sports Partnerships programs. Participation in team sports requires an understanding of teamwork, team strategy and rules, and the requisite skills to participate in that sport. Appropriate sport selection is important. For this reason, Special Olympics offers a variety of choices other than Sports Partnerships, all of which teach functional sport skills and offer meaningful competition experiences.

Unified Programs

Unified Programs integrate athletes with and without intellectual disabilities in training and competition programs as well as social activities. Please visit Unified Sports (Section K) for more information.

Athlete Leadership Programs

The Athlete Leadership Programs (ALPs) are a series of programs developed by Special Olympics, Inc. to ensure Special Olympics athletes are provided opportunities to have meaningful participation in all aspects of the movement. Special Olympics Texas supports these initiatives and provides training and/or support for athletes who want to expand their participation in Special Olympics on or off the field of competition. In addition, the ALPs strive to create a “culture of welcome” for athletes who seek expanded participation in the Special Olympics movement.

The ALPs Have Three Major Goals:

  • To provide athletes a choice in how and in what role they want to participate in the movement.
  • To encourage athletes to take meaningful roles of influence and leadership in the organization to help determine policy and set direction.
  • To provide training opportunities and support systems for athletes, as well as for the volunteers, staff, family members, committee or board members working with athletes to ensure that they are successful in their leadership roles.

There are several programs that fall under this initiative:

Sargent Shriver Global Messenger Program

This program provides training in public speaking and presentation for athletes interested in representing Special Olympics and Special Olympics athletes in formal or support settings. Global Messengers are given opportunities to speak to audiences for a variety of purposes.

Athlete Input Councils

The Athlete Input Councils provide a forum for athletes to discuss programming and policy dialogue via instruction and practice in forming and articulating opinions, group discussions and techniques for gathering their input. Equally important is the enhancement of awareness and listening skills of volunteers, staff and family members who interact with athletes. Athletes can participate at the local or state input councils.

Athletes as Board and Committee Members

Athletes are provided training, mentorship and support to serve in leadership roles on the Special Olympics Texas Board of Directors, on chapter committees and on area level committees. In 2002, the Special Olympics Board of Directors approved a resolution to ensure the inclusion of athletes on committees at all levels of Special Olympics Texas where appropriate.

Athletes as Coaches

This program provides athletes with training and assessment to serve as certified Special Olympics coaches in a Special Olympics sanctioned sport. Upon certification, athletes will serve in appropriate coaching roles. Athletes may perform all the functions of a coach on the playing field under the supervision of head coach or head of delegation. Athletes are not to be left in charge as the primary person responsible for the health, safety and welfare of other athletes; therefore, they cannot serve as the head coach, head of delegation or be counted in the chaperone to athlete ratio on the Delegation Entry Form.

Athletes as Officials

Athletes may fulfill the role of an official for Special Olympics Texas. The program provides training and mentorship opportunities for athletes to develop skills and prepare for official certification by the National Governing Bodies.

Athletes as Volunteers

Special Olympics Texas athletes are welcomed and encouraged to volunteer in various roles within the organization, dependent on the individual’s interest and abilities. All athletes must meet volunteer eligibility requirements, including age, training, paperwork, etc. The only restriction for an athlete to volunteer is that at no time can the athlete volunteer be put or left in charge of the safety and welfare of other athletes or used in the ratio count for teams. As a result, the roles of head of delegation, head coach, and chaperone are not available for athlete volunteers.

Special Olympics ALPs Certification Program

Special Olympics, Inc. has developed a certification program to encourage continuing education opportunities for the athletes involved in ALPs. This certification program offers a series of workshops aimed at developing leadership skills, public speaking skills and technology skills in our Special Olympics athletes. Athletes have an opportunity to attend trainings to meet requirements for certification. Below is a list of some of the coursework available:

  • Beginner Global Messenger Training
  • Advanced Global Messenger II Training
  • Speakers Bureau
  • Athletes in the Media
  • Governance Training
  • Leadership 101
  • Volunteer Readiness
  • PowerPoint for Athletes
  • Board Training
  • Athletes as Coaches and Officials

For more information about any of the Athlete Leadership Programs or trainings, please contact the Director of Program Training at dir_progtrg.chp@sotx.org.


Section K:
Unified Programs

Unified Programs integrate athletes with and without intellectual disabilities in training and competition programs as well as social activities. There are three Unified Programs to choose from:

Unified Recreation Unified Player Development Unified Sports®
Unified Recreation consists of 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 organizations. Unified Player Development refers to the level in which players of higher ability assist teammates in developing sports skills and tactics, and in successfully participating in a team environment. Unified Sports® is a program that combines Special Olympics athletes and athletes without intellectual disabilities (Partners) on sports teams for training and competition. All players on a Unified Sports team must have attained the requisite sports skills and play without modifi cation from the current Special Olympics Official Rules.

As an inclusive program, there must be a proportionate number of athletes without disabilities represented on all Unifi ed Sports® teams.

Statement of Fair Play: Fair Play is designed to optimize participation by all team members (athletes and partners) based on the principle that every player should contribute to the success of the team. To ensure Fair Play, all team members must have the requisite sports skills. Teams should not include players who dominate play, exclude other teammates from contributing to the success of the team, or present a health and safety risk on the fi eld of play. By permitting any team member to dominate play, the result is reduced opportunities and limited roles for other team members. This violates the spirit and intent of the Unifi ed Sports® rules and philosophy, and will be addressed according to the standards set forth by each sport's rules and governing ordinances.

Activities:
  • Intramurals
  • Open Gym/Field
  • Skills/Play Days
  • Camps
  • Club Activities - Meet in the Middle
  • Young Athletes
Activities:
  • Intramurals/League Play
  • Open Gym/Field
  • Skills/Play Days
  • Camps
  • Club Activities - Meet in the Middle
  • Competitions - Local
Activities:
  • League
  • Club Activities - Meet in the Middle (coaches need to be certified)
  • Competitions - Area/State
Coach Certification Requirement:

Coaches are not required to be certified.

Coach Certification Requirement:

Coaches will receive modified training. Can take Unified Sports Coach Training online.

Coach Certification Requirement:

Unified Sports coaches certification is required as well as Unified Sports Coach Certification.

Counting Criteria

Coaches should list the athletes on a roster and turn the information into their area office. Athletes can be tracked as Athletes in Training (AITs).

Counting Criteria
  • Coaches should list the athletes on a roster and turn the information into their area office.
  • Competition may take place at the local level, and may be counted as a local competition if a database is put into GMS. If no database is available, athletes can be counted as AITs.
Counting Criteria
  • Athletes are competing at a sanctioned local or area competition. Entries should come in on the SOTX entry form and information is placed in GMS.
  • Partners need a Class A Volunteer Form, Criminal Background Check, General Orientation, Unified Sports Partner Application Form and Protective Behaviors to go on to an area, state, national, regional or world level competition.
Recognition/Awards

Participation recognition such as a certificate would be appropriate.

Recognition/Awards

Participation recognition such as a certificate or award (provided by SOTX).

Recognition/Awards

Participation will be awarded Unified Sports medals based on place of finish.

Level of Competition

Local only

Level of Competition

Local only

Level of Competition

Local, area, state, national, regional, world

Additional Unified Activities

  • Partners Clubs
  • Sports Partnerships
  • Project UNIFY - Meet in the Middle (MiM)

Refer to Project UNIFY - Meet in the Middle (Section J) for more information.

Unified Programs benefit every participant because they:

  • Integrate athletes with and without intellectual disabilities in trainings and competition.
  • Prepare athletes with higher skill level for participation in school and community sports, though it is not exclusive to athletes of higher ability levels. Athletes of all ability levels are eligible to participate in Unified Programs.
  • Increase the reputation of Special Olympics programs and make the public aware of the skills of athletes.
  • Enable Special Olympics families to participate as team members and coaches on Unified Programs teams.
  • Build friendships and understanding between athletes with and without intellectual disabilities.

Starting A Unified Program

For more information, please contact your area office.

Organizing Participation For Unified Program Models

Unified Recreation:

  • Select the sport you will implement.
  • Determine the target group for team members.
  • Develop a plan to inform schools, agencies or community centers about who may participate.
  • Identify eligible people with and without intellectual disabilities to play on Unified teams.
  • Set minimum standards for participation on the team.
  • Develop sport-specific skills and knowledge.
  • Provide guidance and assistance to the team throughout the season.
  • Provide inclusive sport activities emphasizing recreation and social inclusion.
  • Share successful models with other programs.
  • Evaluate the program.
  • Congratulate the efforts of the team and coaches.

Unified Player Development:

In addition to the information above, the following information is required for the Unified Player Development:

  • Recruit and train coaches.
  • Successful participation in a team environment.
  • Individual player and team skill development.
  • Continue emphasis on social inclusion.

Unified Sports:

It is the goal of Unified Sports to integrate into community leagues those athletes with intellectual disabilities who, because of their higher skill level, are ready to move themselves from traditional Special Olympics teams into mainstream athletic programs. Involvement improves skills, self-esteem and self-image for athletes of all ability levels.

In addition to the information listed in Unified Recreation and Unified Player Development, the following information is required for the Unified Sports:

  • In order to participate in Unified Sports, team(s) must join an existing delegation or create a new delegation.
  • Prepare and distribute practice and competition schedules.
  • Hold a team organization meeting.
  • Get team uniforms.
  • Ensure that Special Olympics competition opportunities exist beyond the local level.
  • Each Unified Sports partner must be a registered SOTX volunteer (must have a current Class A Volunteer Application on file renewed every three years), must have attended General Orientation and Protective Behaviors (in person or online), and must have passed the criminal background check as well as must have Unified Sports Partner Form on file. This form only needs to be resubmitted or updated if any contact or insurance information changes regarding the partners. NOTE: Minor Unified Sports partners (17 years old or younger) are required to submit a Class A Minor Reference Form, instead of the requirement to pass the criminal background check.
  • Head coaches must be “dual certified” – trained in the sport and trained in Unified Sports. Training includes a four hour sport-specific training school and a two hour Unified Sports certification training.
  • Coaches should use the player skills assessment tests in their Unified Sports team selection process for softball, volleyball, basketball, flag football and soccer. These Team Evaluation Questionnaires can be found in the List of Forms Section of the SIG.
  • Unified Sports player ratios must remain throughout the competition.
  • In team sports and racquet sports, athletes and partners should be of similar ages and abilities.
  • Players injured or disqualified may influence a team’s line up. If there are no athletes or Unified Sports partners to replace their respective teammate, a team can play shorthanded if allowed by the specific sport’s rules. Special Olympics athletes may not substitute for partners, nor can partners substitute for Special Olympics athletes.
  • A head of delegation can only compete as a Unified partner within their own delegation when their team is active in that area or chapter competition. When a delegation is inactive (not competing in any sport at the area or chapter competition), the head of delegation may choose to volunteer and train as a Unified partner with a delegation other than their own.
  • Individual sports: AQ, AT, BC, BO, CY, EQ, FS, GF, KY, PL, RS, SA, TT, TN, TR. Unified Sports coaches are allowed to participate in a relay or as a doubles or team player as long as they have a certified bench coach. The bench coach must be certified in the sport. The bench coach is responsible for the conduct of the team.
  • Team sports: BB, FF, SC, SB, VB. Unified Sports coaches are allowed to play on Unified Sports teams as long as they have a dual-certified bench coach. The dual-certified bench coach must be certified in the sport and in Unified Sports. The bench coach is responsible for the line-up and conduct of the team. The bench coach cannot be listed as a player for that game, and he/she cannot enter the game as a player.
  • A Unified Sports coach should provide every athlete and Unified partner with an opportunity to participate in training and competition events which challenge each to his or her fullest potential regardless of their ability level.
  • In the case of team sports, the Unified Sports coach should provide every athlete and Unified partner with an opportunity to play in every game.
  • Unified Sports Code of Conduct must be signed by the coach and be included with competition entry forms.

Monitor(s) Responsibilities

Pre-Tournament Responsibilities

  • Pre-event communication.
  • Conducts Unified Sports coaches breakout meeting.
  • Orients certified official and key volunteers of Unified Sports rules modifications

Pre-Game Responsibilities

  • Meets with both certified bench coaches and presiding officials prior to the coin toss start of each competition.

Responsibilities During Game/Competition

  • Serves as a resource to on-field officials, but does not interrupt flow of play.
  • Monitors competition to ensure that Unified Sports rules and philosophies are being enforced – checking with scorekeeper when necessary.
  • Communicates with certified official at appropriate breaks in play or when approached by officials.

Post-Game Responsibilities

  • Debriefs game with officials.

Official(s)

Pre-Tournament Responsibilities

  • Gets Unified Sports training in advance when possible or pre-game at minimum.
  • Attends Unified Sports coaches breakout meeting.

Pre-Game Responsibilities

  • Meets with both bench coaches and Unified Sports monitor(s) prior to coin toss start of each competition.

Responsibilities During Game/Competition

  • Serves as on-field rules authority.
  • Makes all judgment calls regarding dominance on the field.
  • Confers with Unified Sports monitor(s) when necessary.
  • Communicates with coaches regarding Unified Sports rules interpretations and consequences during a game.

Post-Game Responsibilities

  • Debriefs game with Unified Sports monitor(s).

Score Keeper(s)

Pre-Game Responsibilities

  • Meets with Unified Sports monitor(s) to be clear on Unified rules/responsibilities.
  • Reviews rosters/lineups to ensure that they are correct.

Responsibilities During Game/Competition

  • Maintains rosters and scoring throughout the game and is a resource of information for officials and Unified Sports monitor(s).
  • Informs officials immediately if the ratio is not maintained.

Post-Game Responsibilities

  • Be available if needed for debriefing.

Divisioning Unified Sports

Competition Awards Guidelines Regarding Crossover Division with Traditional Teams

Unified Sports Teams in Traditional Divisions

  • Due to their ability level or a significant safety risk (sometimes due to age), there will be times that a Unified Sports team will not fit appropriately in a Unified Sports division.
  • A competition director has discretion to provide Unified Sports teams with competition against other traditional Special Olympics teams when, as an only option for safe and/or appropriate competition, there is nothing available in the Unified Sports division.
  • Should this take place, the Unified Sports team shall not affect the record or advancement of the other traditional teams in that division.
  • The games are officiated under the traditional sports rules, but Unified Sports teams must maintain their lineups to reflect Unified Sports rules.
  • The Unified Sports team(s) that compete in traditional divisions shall be awarded separately, thus not affecting the awards outcome of their traditional opponents.

Traditional Teams in Unified Sports Divisions

  • There are also times when a traditional team will be placed in a Unified Sports division due to their ability level, safety risk or significant age difference with other traditional teams, but this usually occurs when there are one or two traditional teams that are significantly higher in ability than the rest of the teams in the competition.
  • A competition director has discretion to provide traditional teams with competition against other Unified Sports teams when, as an only option for safe and/or appropriate competition, there is nothing available in the traditional divisions.
  • Should this take place, the traditional team shall not affect the record or advancement of the other Unified Sports teams in that division. The games are officiated under the rules of Unified Sports where applicable. Traditional teams must maintain their lineups to reflect the traditional sport rules.
  • The traditional team(s) that compete in Unified Sports divisions shall be awarded separately, thus not affecting the awards outcome of their Unified Sports opponents.

Section L:
Chapter Sports Management Team

The Sports Management Team (SMT) is an elected representative body that assembles quarterly to discuss competition and training issues that further the mission of Special Olympics Texas. The SMT continually addresses issues that face Special Olympics. This body is responsible for facilitating change and creating new strategies to better serve the athletes, coaches, volunteers and families of Special Olympics Texas by bringing issues to the table that are raised by their constituent groups (see Sport Rule Change Request Form).

Purpose of the Sports Management Team

  1. Assess and evaluate program needs and develop an annual sports program/plan for training and competition.
  2. Identify, recruit and train sport-specific resources statewide.
  3. Implement and evaluate an expanding program of training and competition opportunities at local, area and chapter levels.
  4. Develop ties between Special Olympics Texas, national governing bodies and other sanctioned sports organizations.
  5. Ensure thorough training and evaluation procedures, with the games and competitions conducted in accordance to the standards set forth in the Special Olympics mission and the program meeting the needs of its participants.
  6. Ensure, through training and evaluation procedures, that coaches are training athletes in accordance with the standards set by Special Olympics Texas and Special Olympics, Inc.
  7. Present resolutions to the Board of Directors recommending changes to the sports program, games, competitions, events, rules, procedures, philosophy, goals, objectives, etc.
  8. Ensure development and implementation of a plan to train and certify games directors, competition directors, sports/games officials and general volunteers.
  9. Ensure that the Special Olympics Texas sports programs are of high quality and are reaching as many eligible participants as possible.
  10. Support the area programs in function by identifying resources, providing training/advising for personnel and building the area management teams.
To apply for the Sports Management Team, or to nominate someone to the team, download the Chapter Sports Management Team Application/Nomination Form.

Job Descriptions of the Committee

Director of Coaches Education

Conducts area training; directs/manages certification/recertification; advises area training personnel; serves as technical advisor for training programs; reviews and proposes rules changes to chapter office and SOI; and mobilizes sports teams to evaluate area training programs.

Director of Games

Serves as technical advisor for area and chapter games; assists in the recruitment of area and regional games directors; conducts games director and competition director trainings; and mobilizes sports teams to evaluate area and state games.

Director of Officials

Serves as technical advisor for training of officials at local, area and chapter competitions; represents SOTX to statewide officials' organizations for the purpose of recruitment, training and education; reviews and proposes ideas for rule changes to the chapter office and SOI; and assists games director and coaches education director by providing training of games director and training director as it relates to officials.

State Family Support Network Liaison

Provides input from parents, siblings and guardians, giving perspective on designing appropriate training and competition opportunities; assists in statewide games director trainings and if needed, training director training; appointed by the State Families Support Network Community to serve as liaison to that committee; and represents SOTX SMT to family groups.

Metro-Planning Committee Representative

Represents the metro area and local perspective on designing and implementing training and competition needs of the athletes; assists state staff in the establishment of area sports management teams; represents SMT ideas and initiatives to the area/local level; and assists in the statewide training of games director and training director when needed.

Coaches Representative

Provides input from coach's perspective on the training and competition needs of athletes and coaches; represents SOTX to coaches; and supports statewide coaches and games director training programs.

Athlete Representative

Provides input from the athlete perspective on training and competition; and assists with the evaluation of competition and events.

Trainers Representative

Provides input from trainers and coaches perspective on training and competition needs of athletes and coaches; and assists in statewide training of trainers when needed.

Outreach Liaison

Provides input from constituent groups (TEA, MHMR, ARC, etc.) on designing and implementation of training and competition opportunities. Appointed by the State Outreach Committee to serve as liaison to that committee. Represents SOTX to constituent groups.

Non-Metro Planning Committee Representative

Represents the rural area or local program perspective on designing and implementation of training and competition needs of the athletes; assists the state staff in the establishment of area sports management teams; represents SMT ideas and initiatives to the area/local level; and assists in the statewide training of games director and training director when needed.

Unified Sports® Director

Serves as technical advisor for local, area and state Unified Sports® programs; represents Unified Sports® participants' perspective on training and competition opportunities; and assists the coaches education and games director team members by presenting Unified Sports® information at statewide games director and training director training events.

Director of Sports Development

Represents SOTX sport director perspectives to the SMT; serves as a technical advisor for area and chapter games; suggests rule changes as generated from the sport development teams; and works with sport director to assist with the recruitment of qualified clinicians at designated training schools.

Board Liaisons

Represents program perspective on the training and competition needs of athletes, families and coaches to the Board of Directors; and informs and updates SMT on the directives and initiatives of the Board of Directors as they relate to program services and organizational issues, needs and concerns. This position is held by a current SOTX board member.

Program/Area Director Representative

Represents program/area director perspective on the training and competition needs of athletes, as well as the considerations and ideas of the volunteers that implement the training, competition and development needs of the organization at the area level. This position is selected by the vote of SOTX area directors, and this position is held by a currently employed SOTX staff member.

Committee Selection

SMT members are selected by a subcommittee of the SMT.

Individuals interested in applying should fill out the Chapter Sports Management Team Application/Nomination Form and return the application to the Director of Competition and Games. Applications are due by November 1.

Any active member of SOTX may submit nominations and applications.

The SeniorVice President of Field Services, Director of Program Training, Director of Competition and Games, and the Director of Games Management will serve as staff liaisons to the Chapter Sports Management Team.

Terms of Office

The team members shall serve for a term that will last for a period of two years and may serve no more than two consecutive terms.

The termination of a team member for reasons other than expiration of his/her term shall be at the discretion of the board liaisons and in conjunction with the chapter staff.

2017 SMT Meeting Schedule

Thursday, March 2, 2017 5:30 p.m. Conference Call
Thursday, June 15, 2017 5:30 p.m. Conference Call
Friday, September 8, 2017 2:00 p.m. Chapter Office - Austin
Thursday, November 16, 2017 5:30 p.m. Conference Call

Please submit sports rules updates/change requests or other sports related agenda item requests to your program/area director or directly to the chapter office at:

1804 Rutherford Lane
Austin, TX 78754

Fax: 512.835.7756

Email: sharker@sotx.org


Section M:
Rules and Competition

The Purpose of Special Olympics Sports Rules

All Special Olympics competition shall be conducted in accordance with Official Special Olympics Inc. (SOI) Sports Rules, which are designed to protect the athletes, provide fair and equitable conditions of competition, and promote uniformity so that no competitor shall obtain an unfair advantage over another. To further this goal, Special Olympics, Inc. classifies sports included in the program as either official sports or demonstration sports, and prescribes the sports rules which govern international, national, regional, chapter, area and local levels of competition. All coaches and interested volunteers should obtain a copy of the Official Special Olympics Inc. Sports Rules through the SOI website at specialolympics.org/sports.aspx or the Special Olympics Texas Coaches Resources page.

General Competition Information

Team Events

All athletes must be provided with an opportunity to compete in either one local competition or two scrimmages in preparation for participating in an area competition.

Due to safety risks, athletes using wheelchairs are prohibited from competing in the following team competitions: basketball, flag football, golf, soccer, softball and volleyball. Athletes using wheelchairs may compete in these sport’s Individual Skills contests should they meet the performance requirements. Motor Activities Training Program (MATP) opportunities are available as well (see Section F).

No team shall be able to change its roster by adding new competitors after the first game, round or when the preliminary round is completed. This rule applies to all sports.

Individual Events

No physical contact by a family member, coach or volunteer is allowed in Individual Skills competition. Verbal cueing is allowed, but no physical contact will be permitted.

For all team competitions in which there are individual skills, SOTX  will require a minimum of eight participants to offer the skills event at Chapter Games. This will be determined at the time entries are due at the Chapter office.

Coaches

Section V. Sports rules can be downloaded from http://www.sotx.org/get-involved/coaches/resources-and-rules/.

Entries

A team evaluation questionnaire must be turned in with the area, regional and chapter entries for all Special Olympics teams, including all Unified Sports® teams (basketball, flag football, soccer, softball and volleyball).

Attire

At all Special Olympics Texas events, athletes' and coaches' footwear must be appropriate for the sport involved to maintain safety, comfort and athletic appearance as determined by the games committee.

Interarea Competitions

Delegations must participate in their area for local and area competitions. Delegations wishing to compete in another area/chapter's event can do so provided they have completed the following four steps:

  1. Do not bypass an event that is offered by their own area and/or chapter.
  2. Are granted permission from their program/area director.
  3. Have certified coaches in the sport in which they wish to participate.
  4. Notify the Director of Competition and Games of their intent to compete.

Delegations are encouraged to document all four steps and to maintain those records.

Event Divisioning

In keeping with the Special Olympics philosophy that every athlete should be encouraged to perform to the best of his or her ability, athletes are placed in competition divisions according to the following guidelines:

  • A division shall consist of a minimum of three and maximum of eight competitors or teams. If there are not at least three competitors or teams in a division, divisions shall be combined to meet the required minimum number of competitors or teams, but only if the sport specifically allows coed events.Athletes shall be divided into competition divisions based on their gender, ability and age.
  • Competition divisions shall be established so that they are even. An even division is one in which all participants, based on performance records, have a reasonable chance to win. This definition also applies to team competitions.
  • In structuring even divisions, participants shall be ranked in descending order of performance. The difference in times or performance scores between the best athlete and the worst athlete shall not normally differ by more than 10 percent. This rule is known as the “10 percent rule” or the "10 percent differential."
  • In team sports competition, the team evaluation questionnaire (TEQ) scores and the possibility of a classification round shall be used to determine ability divisions. The 10 percent rule shall apply to these divisions.
  • A classification round involves teams competing in a short version of the official team sport. Classification round pairings are determined by the team skills scores submitted on the Team Evaluation Questionnaire (TEQ) with the registration forms for the event.
  • In gymnastics, figure skating, roller skating, diving and equestrian events, all of which require judging, the 10 percent rule is not appropriate for use in divisioning. Nevertheless, athletes shall be placed in even divisions based upon performance capabilities.

Protest Procedure

A protest must be submitted to the Sports Rules Committee no later than 30 minutes after the completion of the division of the event being protested. A protest can be submitted only for violation of rules, not for judgment calls made by an official(s). The protest form is located here (http://www.sotx.org/get-involved/sig/forms/sotx_protest_form.pdf) and will be available onsite at the venue. Ask your Games Director for a copy.

Prohibitive Sports

Prohibitive sports and events are activities which the Special Olympics Sports Medical Committee has determined do not meet the minimum health and safety standards of Special Olympics, Inc. These sports and events shall be prohibited from all Special Olympics programs. Prohibited sports shall not be a part of any Special Olympics competition, training program, clinic, etc. The following sports and events shall be prohibited from Special Olympics:

  • Sports: boxing, wrestling, trampoline, shooting, karate (martial arts), fencing, American football, rugby, Nordic jumping
  • Athletics events: discus, hammer throw, pole vault
  • Aquatics events: 3 meter platform diving

National Governing Bodies

The addresses and phone numbers of the national governing bodies for each sport are listed in this guide. All coaches, officials and volunteers are encouraged to purchase sports rule books from the national governing bodies of the sports in which they are involved. A complete listing of the SOTX Sports Menu is available in Section O.

Special Olympics Age Groups

  • Special Olympics age groups have been selected as being the most representative of those used in sports competitions internationally.
  • The following age groups shall be used for all Special Olympics games and competitions:
    Individual Sports Team Sports
    Youth: Ages 8 - 11 Junior: Ages 8 - 15
    Junior: Ages 12 - 15 Senior: Ages 16 - 21
    Senior: Ages 16 - 21 Master: Ages 22 years and over
    Master: Ages 22 - 29
    Sr. Master: Ages 30 years and over

Open age group: This age group is reserved for combining age groups to ensure equal competition and/or meet the rule of having a minimum number of competitors in each division. The open age group is strongly recommended for use in competition where only a small group of participants are entered.

  • The athlete’s age group is determined by the athlete’s age on the opening date of the games or competition.
  • In situations where there are not enough competitors to hold a competition in a certain age group, the athletes should be moved into the next oldest age group. In the event that there are not enough athletes within the masters age group to hold a competition, the athletes within the masters age group shall be moved to the open age group.
  • The masters or senior masters age group may be subdivided into two equal groups if there is a sufficient number of athletes to organize equal divisions.

Local Competition/Scrimmage

Special Olympics Texas believes in offering as many competition opportunities as possible. While not every athlete can advance to the Summer Games, Fall Classic or Winter Games, they should be afforded every means possible to compete locally. Special Olympics Texas has approved the following procedures to help meet the needs of the athletes while providing additional local competition opportunities:

  • The application to host a local competition or event must be submitted to the area office, one month prior to competition. Entry forms or a database must be turned in to the area office within 15 days after the competition. Fill out the Application to Host a Local Competition or Event in the Rules and Competition section.
  • Games and Competition Directors: The Sports Management Team strongly recommends that a volunteer cannot be a games or competition director in a competition which they are coaching an athlete or team. However, if circumstances dictate that a coach or volunteer be a games or competition director, they would be removed from any decision affecting the sport in which their athlete or team is competing.
  • In all sports, a coach will provide the opportunity for athletes to compete in either one local competition or two scrimmages against individuals outside their own team prior to area or regional competition. The team(s) they compete against may be composed of individuals with or without intellectual disabilities, as well as Unified Sports® teams (school intramural teams, church, civic or scout group scrimmages, etc.).
  • It is the responsibility of the program/area director to ensure that the organization and quality of local events are of acceptable standards, and that dates, times and locations do not conflict with any other scheduled event. The program/area director may or may not approve and sanction the proposed local competition. If the request is not approved, then the name Special Olympics may not be used and the local competition is not recognized as an official event that is covered by Special Olympics Texas rules, policies or insurance.

Local Competition Requirements

An application to host a local competition or event must be turned in one month prior to the competition and entry forms or a database must be turned in no later than 15 days after completion. If no request is turned in, and/or is not approved, the name Special Olympics may not be used and the local competition is not recognized as an official event that is covered by Special Olympics Texas rules, policies or insurance.

Opening Ceremonies

  • Must include the Athlete Oath.
  • Must include a parade of athletes (some sort of acknowledgement of teams participating).
  • Must declare the competition open.
  • Can include National Anthem.
  • Should include greetings from the organizing committee.
  • Can include brief greetings from local dignitaries.

Duration

  • Local level competition may range from one day to two days.

Funding

  • Outside agency funding and in-kind donations may be pursued as coordinated with the area office.

Food

  • Can provide meals/snacks/refreshments.

Technical

  • Must use qualified officials.
  • Divisioning must be done in accordance to SOTX policy and development stage of the sport.
  • Must follow Special Olympics Texas official rules.
  • Must use proper sport equipment.
  • Must submit an official set of entry forms or a database to the area office within 15 days of competition.
  • Can have a coaches meeting prior to start of competition.

Volunteers

  • Must recruit sufficient volunteers to ensure the smooth operation of the competition.

Administration

  • Must develop and distribute:
    • registration information.
    • competition schedule.
    • use of the GMS System on site (if available).

Risk Management

  • Must ensure facility is adequate to provide a safe competitive environment.

Closing Ceremonies

  • Can do thank you announcements.
  • Can have a dinner and dance.
  • Can have a wrap up with the committee.

Scrimmage Requirements

  • Minimum Requirements
  • Divisioning must be done in accordance to SOTX policy and development.
  • Must follow Special Olympics Texas official rules.
  • Must use proper sport equipment.
  • Must ensure facility is adequate to provide a safe competitive environment.

Area Competition

In order to increase the number of sports available in smaller areas, enhance the quality of competition and provide cooperative regional efforts, the following guidelines are recommended for the minimum number of teams or participants required for an area to conduct its own separate area event or tournament:

  • Softball – 12 teams
  • Volleyball – 10 teams
  • Basketball – 16 teams
  • Aquatics – 90 participants
  • Gymnastics – 30 participants
    (Numbers per sport are subject to change)

Voluntary compliance with the minimum standards established will continue. No sanctions will be taken for areas not meeting these standards.

The Chapter Sports Management Team will monitor efforts made by areas to meet these standards and evaluate the validity of these numbers relative to providing quality competition. The number of participants required will be reviewed and is subject to change. If an area is unable to attain the specified numbers per sport, an area may:

  • Conduct the event within their own area boundaries, inviting an adequate number of participants from one or all areas in their region to participate.
  • Conduct the event within their area boundaries as a local event with less than the recommended numbers. However, participants who want to qualify for chapter competitions must still compete in a sanctioned area event.
  • Send their area participants to another area’s event within the region.
  • Host the event for one or all of the areas within the region.

Program/area directors within a region will work cooperatively to ensure that all the athletes within the region have the opportunity for fair and equal competition in the sport(s) of their choice, and that no one area or city is required to host an excessive or unfair number of events. Areas which encounter difficulty achieving the recommended numbers should contact the chapter office for assistance. Areas which do not host the sanctioned area event in a sport will still ensure that at least one local competition is available in that sport within their area. No area will discontinue any event or sport even if the number of recommended participants is not readily available. Area programs will enhance the quality of existing events by including more participants and providing additional competition opportunities through cooperative ventures with other areas.

Regional Competition

Regional competitions will qualify participants for chapter competition if an area does not offer competition in a sport at the area level. A regional competition may not be substituted as the qualifier for chapter if an area competition is offered. Participation in regional competition is encouraged, in this case, as an additional competition for the participants, but will not be considered a qualifier for chapter competition.

National Invitational Tournaments (NITs)

Participants (including Athletes, Unified Athletes and teams that wish to compete in an invitational must have participated in the most recent chapter competition for that sport or be registered for the upcoming Chapter competition. Athletes must have a correct, complete and current Athlete Enrollment/Medical Release Form on file in the area office within established deadlines and which stays current through the last day of the NIT. Coaches must be certified in the sport and must be up-to-date on all Class A volunteer requirements and required sports certifications. Unified Partners must be certified as Unified Partners, must be up-to-date on all Class A Volunteer requirements and must have participated in the most recent Chapter competition for that sport.

Athletes and Unified Partners must be 12 years old by the first day of an NIT competition in order to compete at that NIT.

Criteria for Participants Competing at the Area Level

To compete in an area meet or event, an athlete or Unified Partner must:

  • Be at least 8 years old by the first day of the event. Remember, 6 and 7 year olds are eligible to train but not to compete.
  • Have a correct, complete and current Athlete Enrollment/Medical Release Form on file or a Class A Volunteer certification and Unified Partner status in the area office as submitted by his or her coach before any training or practice is initiated and within established deadlines.
  • Have participated in training sessions for no less than eight weeks.
  • Have all entry requirements correctly completed by his or her coach.
  • Comply with the established deadlines set by the program/area directors for entry forms, etc.
  • Compete in at least one local competition or two scrimmages prior to the area competition.

Criteria for Participants Competing at the Chapter Level

Experts in the field of sports for athletes with disabilities point to the considerable value of team sports. In order for Special Olympics to meet the objective of offering quality team sports competitions, the following rules shall apply:

  • There will be one certified coach for every team (not one per delegation) participating in team competition in basketball, flag football, soccer, softball and volleyball. (Team or doubles bowling does not apply, meaning each team does not require a certified coach.)
  • Whenever possible, a team shall be selected from a local Special Olympics program (a school, center, agency, etc.). No additions to the roster are allowed unless prior approval is granted by the chapter office.
  • Combined teams are allowed at both regional and chapter competitions. Coaches must supply a team evaluation questionnaire (TEQ) for the combined team and must identify it as a combined team on TEQ.
  • When there is not a sufficient number of athletes to form a team, the following types of teams may be created:
    • Combined Team: males and females from a local program (e.g., school, center, agency, etc.) may be combined into a team. Special Olympics shall not offer separate competitions for combined teams. A combined team shall play in the men’s division.
    • Composite Team: athletes from more than one local program may be organized into a composite team. A composite team shall not be an all-star team composed of the best players. Composite teams shall have practiced together for a sufficient length of time so that the members play as a team.
    • Modified Team: an example of a modified team would be to offer five-a-side soccer as a means for developing the sport. Regulation (11-man) soccer will still be offered.
  • Divisioning:
    • Each team shall be evaluated during local and area competitions using an approved sport evaluation sheet.
    • Evaluation sheets and area tournament brackets are sent to the next level of competition for establishing groups for classification purposes.
    • Classification rounds will be required in all team sports.

Participation

Statement of Participation: In team sports, each coach must offer every athlete the opportunity to play in each game.

It is required that every athlete listed on the roster must play during regulation game time. Failure to follow the participation rule will result in a forfeit. The first time it occurs during the tournament will result in a forfeit of that game for the offending team. If that team violates this rule a second time, they will be removed from the tournament.

Additional offenses will result in possible revocation of the coach’s certification. Coaches may indicate on their roster prior to the start of the game, any players that will not play due to injury or behavior problems.

Note: The only exception is in volleyball where each player must compete in every match, not every game.

Procedures for Successful Classification/Divisioning

  • Obtain as much information as possible about each team prior to classification:
    • Team Evaluation Questionnaires (now required for all area, regional and chapter competitions).
    • Competition record of league play and/or competitions.
    • Observations during the season by members of the Sports Management Team.
    • Additional information from a team’s head coach.
  • Based on the information obtained from above, rank all teams from weakest to strongest and note any teams which should be placed in the same division and which teams should not be placed in the same division.
  • If the total number of teams is less than 12, one field or court can be utilized with one group of assessors (2 - 3 people).
  • If the total number of teams is 12 or more, divide the total number of teams into three equal groups according to their ranking.
    • Group 1 - Weakest Teams
    • Group 2 - Middle Teams
    • Group 3 - Strongest Teams
  • Utilize two fields or courts and two sets of assessors (2 - 3 per set). One set of assessors will observe, score and divide the weakest group while simultaneously the other set of assessors observe, score and divide the strongest group of teams.
  • After divisioning for Groups 1 and 3 have been completed, the following teams should be brought to the Group 2 classification:
    • Any team which was too high for the Group 1 teams or too low for the Group 3 teams.
    • The two highest teams which have been divisioned from Group 1 and the two lowest teams which have been divisioned from Group 3.
  • Combine both sets of assessors and divide Group 2.
  • Meet as a divisioning committee and finalize all divisioning placements.

Other Classification Protocols

  • The division committee should be made up of assessors who are experienced in both the sport and Special Olympics.
  • At least two scrimmage opportunities should be played by each team during classifications.
  • Verify that the dominant players are identified by the head coach.
  • Establish ground rules for “play” that will enhance the assessor’s feel for the team’s overall ability.
  • Do not be afraid to inconvenience a team in order to assure the proper placement of all teams.

Classification Guidelines

  1. Classification – Consequences for team not showing up for classification:
    Chapter– athletes that do not attend classification (for any reason) must sit out the first game/match that his/her team plays in the tournament.
    • If a team does not show up at a classification, without having adhered to notification procedures by reporting and having their absence approved through proper channels, the team will be scratched from the tournament.

    Area– areas have the flexibility to enforce a penalty that ranges from no consequences, athlete sits out one game, athlete does not play in tournament or other consequences that the competition committee feels is appropriate for their specific tournament.
    • The important thing is that the area competition committee MUST publish the consequences for players not attending classification prior to the classification round.
  2. Classification – Who plays?
    Chapter and Area– Every effort will be made to see all players on a team, but due to time and space constraints, this is not always possible.
    • Unless the classification committee says otherwise for a specific tournament, your entire team is expected to attend classification.
    • The best players MUST start in their usual position and will be asked to play to their full competitive ability during classification.

Comprehensive Plan for Equalizing Competition

Purpose and Problem

The purpose of this plan is to equalize competition as stated in the Official Special Olympics Sports Rules. In some instances, not every athlete is presented with an equal opportunity to win a medal, and the sense of accomplishment that the medal represents. Past results have shown that some athletes perform 15 percent to 50 percent better than their entry score. Invalid scores are the result of many factors, including the effects of additional training, increased motivation, faulty or inaccurate score reporting and improved track and weather conditions.

SOTX Rabbit Rule

Why does this rule exist?

Special Olympics Texas feels that the "rabbit rule" is a fairer revision of the Honest Effort Rule that is listed in the SOI Sports Rules. Application of the Special Olympics, Inc. Honest Effort Rule would require any athlete who performs over a 15 percent improvement be disqualified in any sport that has an entry score.

The "rabbit rule" was established in athletics, aquatics, bowling and cycling for the purpose of equalizing competition and protecting against inaccurate entry scores or sandbagging in preliminaries. More information will be shared about these and other sports when and if percentages are established.

Please see the athletics/cycling (Summer Games), aquatics (Fall Classic) and bowling (Winter Games) sections for specific rabbit percentages.

How does the “rabbit rule” work?

The rabbit percentage is determined by using the best score in a heat.

For example, in track events, the rabbit percentage is 25 percent. If the fastest time in a particular heat (M2005) is 20 seconds, then the rabbit score for heat M2005 would be: (20 seconds x 75 percent = 15 seconds). This means that any athlete within heat M2005 that runs a time faster than 15 seconds (over a 25 percent improvement) would be identified as a "rabbit" and would have his score removed in the determination of awards for that heat. The other athletes would move up one place.

If the meet is being run with heats fastest to slowest (athlete awarded in heat in which he ran):

  • The "rabbit" athlete does NOT repeat the race and the "rabbit" is not disqualified. The "rabbit" athlete is instead placed according to the appropriate heat (in which his score fits) and is awarded according to this new placement. Because the races are run fastest to slowest, the race in which the athlete should have run has already been completed, and the heat in which the athlete should have competed can be determined immediately. A "rabbit" athlete will always be placed in front of the awards stand as an additional award recipient. That athlete should be announced as the “second/third/fourth place, etc.” winner in heat M2004 (heat in which he should have run) as an additional award recipient within the same heat that they just ran (but with the appropriate award place based on a faster heat that already ran). So, a “rabbited” athlete will not take the place of another award recipient - they will be dual-awarded accordingly.

If the meet is being run with heats slowest to fastest (athlete awarded in heat he should have run in):

  • The “rabbit” athlete does NOT repeat the race and the "rabbit" is not disqualified. The "rabbit" athlete is held until a faster heat has competed and is instead placed according to the appropriate heat (one in which his score fits) and is awarded as an additional (second/third/fourth place, etc.) with this new heat according to his new placement. The places of the athletes in the heat in which a "rabbit" is inserted are not affected by the "rabbit" score because the "rabbit" is receiving an additional place award in that heat. The "rabbit" will be announced as an "additional second/third/fourth place, etc. finisher" as to clarify that their placement was not due to a tie and stands in front of the place and not on the awards stand. So, a "rabbited" athlete will not take the place of another award recipient; they will be dual-awarded accordingly.

Note: In both scenarios, the "rabbit" receives the same award placement medal or ribbon - only the presentation is different. Also, a "rabbit" should not be reheated into a heat in which he/she finishes first. The only exception is if their score places him/her as the best overall performer in the entire event.

Competition and award directors have the flexibility to run heats fastest to slowest or slowest to fastest. Because of this flexibility, rabbit awards procedures have the flexibility to award rabbits within both scenarios above.

This procedure can be confusing to the casual observer, but the rabbit percentage is in place to protect the integrity of SOTX competition without penalizing athletes with disqualification.

Awarding Rabbits

  • If an athlete outperforms everyone else in their age group and gender within a single event, they will automatically be awarded a 1st place, regardless if they rabbited or not.
  • If an athlete rabbits, they will be awarded using their final score and placed within the closest heat based on that final score.
  • If an entire heat rabbits, all athletes will stay in that original heat and be awarded based on their final scores within that heat.

Team Evaluation Questionnaires (TEQs)

Team Evaluation Questionnaires (TEQs) must be turned in with basketball, flag football, soccer, softball and volleyball team competition entries. Rosters should still be turned in for each team.

The TEQ helps to quantify – give a number value – to each team. Each question has a value that helps the classifiers “score” teams which assists in putting them in the proper division.

The TEQ should be filled out and turned in by coaches with entries at every level of competition (area, regional, chapter). The questions pertain to starters only unless otherwise noted.

TEQs for the following sports are located within each sports rules section: basketball, flag football, soccer, softball and volleyball.

Local Training Program and Minimum Standards

  • Each local training program must have at least one certified coach.
  • Each local training program must conduct training sessions reasonably distributed throughout at least an eight-week period prior to the entry deadline for the area competition and/or chapter competition.
  • Coaches must record the scores of each athlete on a weekly basis, under conditions as similar as possible to actual meet conditions.
  • Athletes should have at least one local competition or two scrimmage opportunities prior to area competition.

Area Competition Entry

  • The coach may submit an “adjusted entry score” on the area entry form. If a coach does not feel an adjusted entry score is necessary, then he/she should not enter one.
  • An athlete must compete in the same event(s) at the area meet that they intend to enter at the chapter meet.
  • TEQs are required with Unified Sports® and team entries.

Chapter Competition and Games Entry

  • Local training programs should continue on a weekly basis up to the date of the chapter games.
  • Area scores are recommended to be used as chapter competition entry scores. However, a coach may submit an adjusted score.
  • TEQs are required with Unified Sports® and team entries.
  • Unified Teams participating at Chapter Games must have participated on a Unified Team at an area level in order to advance. This is mandatory for all participants, including Athletes and Unified Partners.
  • Unified Partners must participate at an area competition to compete at a Chapter Games.

Determination of Adjusted Entry Scores

Coaches must record the scores of each athlete on a weekly basis, under conditions as similar as possible to actual meet competition.

The coach should select the score that best represents the athlete’s true performance and use it as the basis for determining the “adjusted entry score” as follows:

  • Improvement due to additional training - 0 to 5 percent
  • Improvement due to increased motivation - 0 to 5 percent
  • Improvement due to improved track and weather conditions - 0 to 5 percent
  • Total adjustment 0 - to 15 percent
    Example: A coach has an athlete who runs the 100 meter in 20 seconds. The coach may submit an entry score that reflects up to a 15 percent improvement (e.g., 20 seconds x .15 = 3 seconds; 20 - 3 = 17 seconds) if he/she feels it more accurately reflects the true performance of the athlete.

Use of Special Olympics Awards

  • All athletes who start a Special Olympics competition shall receive recognition for their efforts in the form of a place award. First through eighth place awards shall be given for divisions in all competition events. The athlete’s place or finish (fourth through eighth) will be so designated on the ribbon they receive. Ribbons are not awarded for first, second, or third place when medals are awarded.
  • Only official Special Olympics medals or ribbons shall be used for official sports or demonstration sports at local, area, regional, chapter and World Games, tournaments, meets, etc., with the exception that trophies may be awarded to teams at team sports tournaments. In no event shall an individual receive a trophy for placement in a Special Olympics competition. Teams may receive team trophies; team members may not.
  • An athlete who is disqualified or does not finish a competition shall be given a participation ribbon.
  • An athlete who fails to start a competition event shall not receive an award or a participation ribbon for that event.
  • Athletes who “rabbit” (exceed the designated variance for the heat) during area or chapter games will not repeat their event. They will be reheated (on paper) into the appropriate heat for their score and receive the appropriate award for the reheated event.
  • Special Olympics medals and ribbons are for registered athletes only. They are not intended for fund raisers, giveaways, etc.
  • As stated in the SOI Sports Rules: An athlete who is the sole competitor in an event may receive a first place award for his or her performance.

Awards Presentation/Venue Guidelines

SOI Guidelines to Keep in Mind

The Special Olympics awards ceremony provides an opportunity to recognize athletes’ accomplishments in a dignified and enthusiastic atmosphere that reflects the Olympic tradition. Therefore the location of the ceremony should be very visible to spectators and large enough for photographs to be taken. When possible, it is suggested that awards be given out immediately following the competition. This highlights the athletes and allows everyone to see:

  1. The health, safety and welfare of the athletes are the primary priorities.
  2. All athletes who compete in a Special Olympics competition should receive recognition for their efforts in the form of a ribbon or medal. First through third places receive gold, silver or bronze medals, respectively. Fourth through eighth places receive ribbons.
  3. Only official medals and ribbons, not any other awards or gifts, may be presented during the ceremony.
  4. There should be a sufficient number of awards at venues to allow awards presentations to occur immediately following each ability division’s competition.
  5. Athletes disqualified for technical rules infringements or those who do not finish will be awarded a participation ribbon on the last position on the podium. Athletes who are disqualified for unsportsmanlike behavior will not receive an award.
  6. Award ceremonies should be held near the competition field of play; accessible to athletes, coaches, families, medical staff and spectators; and not require any participant to interrupt another competition or awards presentation to reach them.
  7. The awards area should have some method of amplification. Bullhorns should only be used as a backup.
  8. The awards area should have a sense of pageantry and color through creative use of pennants, greenery, banners, etc. The Special Olympics banner should hang behind the awards stand. Per Olympic standards, no sponsor signage is permitted in the awards area.
  9. Athletes shall display no national flags during the awards ceremony.
  10. Sufficient time should be allowed between individual presentations in order to provide family and friends the opportunity to take photos and enjoy the moment.
  11. Only athletes – not coaches or managers – may be part of the ceremony in individual sports.
  12. Coaches do not receive awards. This is particularly important to remember for team sports when coaches are lined up with the athletes and are introduced over the public address system.
  13. If an athlete is not present for the ceremony, stay on schedule and proceed without him or her. Mark awards for later pickup.
  14. If an athlete receives the incorrect award, give the correct award, but do not take away the original award.
  15. Any protest or complaint should be dealt with/resolved by the competition management (e.g., Sports Rules Committee). It is not the responsibility of the awards personnel to deal with any protest.
  16. The protocol of the awards ceremony must be followed at all times.

SOTX Awards Guidelines

  1. Subscribe to the SOI Guidelines as stated.
  2. Require specific jobs, as defined in the games director/competition director manuals.
  3. Use the awards venue's functionality, suggestions and procedures, as given in the games director/competition director manuals.
  4. Follow procedures for a successful awards venue: pageantry, sound system, volunteers, design, athletes, facilities.
  5. Follow minimum requirements for equipment.
  6. SOTX awarding will skip places on ties at every level of competition.

Section N:
Registration

Registration and Entry Fee Policy

Special Olympics Texas provides local, area and regional competitions at no cost to teams. However, according to Special Olympics policy, Special Olympics teams may be assessed for part or all of the on-site costs for events. Special Olympics Texas assesses each team in the form of a per person entry fee if they participate in the Chapter competitions, to partially offset the costs associated with these events. All athletes and Unified Sports® partners must pay a $30 registration fee to participate in the Chapter competitions. In these instances, it is the responsibility of the local team, under the leadership of the head of delegation, to ensure that sufficient funds are available to support the needs of the team by having funds budgeted as a part of a sponsoring agency or school budget, or through fund raising events and solicitation in the community directed at the general public, civic organizations, agencies and local businesses. While it is acceptable to involve parents and guardians in fund raising events and activities, they should not be asked to directly provide any fee unless they offer to do so freely and willingly.

If full payment is not included with the entry forms, one of the following steps must be taken:

  • A Scratches Deadline has been established for each Chapter Games. Scratches of Athletes and/or Unified Partners will incur a $15.00 administration fee per participant that scratches if submitted after the Scratches Deadline. Scratches Deadlines can be found on each Chapter Games Entries Processing Schedule. The Entries Processing Schedule is listed at www.sotx.org/competitions on each Chapter Games competition page. Scratches must be submitted by the scratch deadline to the Director of Games Management in order to avoid the administration fee.
  • Public or private schools, state institutions or other agencies whose accounting procedures require the use of an invoice must contact the SOTX Director of Accounts.
  • Full payment of program service fees must be received during games registration onsite at chapter games, or arrangements with the SOTX Finance Department must be made.

Special Olympics Texas will consider each request for payment extension individually.

According to Special Olympics policy, it is the responsibility of the chapter and area levels of Special Olympics to assist teams in raising funds to meet such assessments. Technical assistance and ideas are available from any member of the development staff.

Please contact your program/area director first for additional information and assistance. Most of your needs will be quickly addressed by the program/area director. This includes deadlines for chapter games entries.

The area and chapter levels of Special Olympics Texas will attempt to keep costs to a minimum and to successfully implement chapter fund raising projects that will provide increased services at lower costs. Also, the area and chapter levels of Special Olympics Texas will attempt to assist and advise you so that you will be able to meet your local organization (team) needs. However, please keep in mind that a major responsibility of a head of delegation is to develop and implement a budget and financial plan for the local organization (team).

Scholarships

Torch Run scholarships are available to help off-set the cost of attending chapter games.

High Participation Sports and Events

  • Bowling
  • Basketball
  • Athletics
    • 50m Run
    • 100m Run
    • Softball Throw
    • Running Long Jump
    • Standing Long Jump
    • Mini-javelin

Low Participation Sports

  • Any sport not listed above
  • Athletics
    • Any Race 200m or longer
    • Pentathlon
    • High Jump

Chapter Games Entry Process

IMPORTANT NOTE: Social Security numbers ARE NOT REQUIRED ON ANY DELEGATION OR ATHLETE ENTRY FORMS.

The head coach/head of delegation for each team/individual is responsible for submitting entry forms which meet the following criteria:

  • Use new entry forms from the SOTX website.
  • All forms correctly and completely filled out and legible.
  • Three copies of the entry forms must be used for all chapter events. Use the athlete entryforms found on the website and have a date at the bottom. Please make sure your forms are dated 2014 or later. A chapter-generated form will be mailed out a minimumof three weeks prior to the chapter entry deadline to the HoD of every delegation thatattended last year's event.
    If your delegation did not attend a specific chapter games last year, but plans to attend this year, contact the Director of Volunteer Services (dir_volunteer.chp@sotx.org) to get your chapter-generated Delegation Entry Form. The most current Delegation Personnel Entry Form has the season noted at top of page: 2017 Winter, 2017 Spring/Summer or 2017 Fall.
  • For entries at any level, Unified Partners (regardless of age) must be included on the Delegation Personnel Form and Athlete Entry Form.
  • All entry forms should be submitted to the area office on or before the area offices established deadline. Entries submitted directly to the chapter office will not be accepted. Forms will be accepted after the deadline date if they bear an official U.S. postmark dated seven days prior to the deadline. If the head coach is experiencing difficulties in meeting the deadline, he or she is encouraged to call their area office and speak to the area director for assistance. No delegation may enter after the posted chapter entry deadline.
  • No athlete will be added to a delegation that were not listed on the original entries submitted. Check the data entry schedule posted on the website for that date.

Appropriate chapter office personnel may make the following adjustments when processing the forms:

  • Whenever an entry score is not indicated on an entry form, the participant may be placed in the highest ability division for his or her age and gender divisions.
  • Whenever more than the allowed number of events are entered, the participant may be placed in the first event(s) indicated up to the maximum allowable.
  • If all criteria for the chapter games entry has been met, the head of delegation will be notified via email when corrections reports are available for review online. The head of delegation should thoroughly review the information for accuracy and fax or email corrections to the chapter office by the corrections deadline. Even if no corrections are needed, indication of the review of the corrections reports is appreciated. If a processing error is made by the chapter office it will be corrected, if the chapter office is contacted within established timelines.

An official notice of nonacceptance will be sent to those coaches who:

  • Did not meet the deadline date.
  • Did not correctly complete the appropriate entry form(s).

It is the responsibility of the head coach/head of delegation to ensure that all concerned parties – athletes, parents, coaches, supervisors, volunteers, etc. – are notified immediately if an individual or team has been declared ineligible for competition.

Program/area director, meet directors or any other members of Special Olympics Texas, other than chapter office personnel, are not authorized to declare individuals or teams eligible for chapter competition. Program/area director and meet directors may assist coaches and volunteers in completing entry forms and checking the forms for completeness and accuracy.

Athlete to Volunteer Ratio

The official ratio for Special Olympics Texas is four athletes to one adult, and for the purpose of supervision all minor Unified Sports® partners (17 years old or younger) are included in the athlete side of the count. For overnight trips, the SOTX ratio of four athletes to one adult is required by gender as well, and any minor Unified Sports® partners need to be counted with the athletes. For example, if a delegation has six male athletes, three male minor Unified Sports® partners, and five female athletes, five chaperones are needed – three male chaperones and two female chaperones. Please contact your area office with questions about the ratio requirement.

Delegation Ratio At-A-Glance

Remember to calculate along gender lines for all overnight trips.

Athletes Personnel Athletes Personnel Athletes Personnel Athletes Personnel
0 - 4 1 61 - 64 16 121 - 124 31 181 - 184 46
5 - 8 2 65 - 68 17 125 - 128 32 185 - 188 47
9 - 12 3 69 - 72 18 129 - 132 33 189 - 192 48
13 - 16 4 73 - 76 19 133 - 136 34 192 - 196 49
17 - 20 5 77 - 80 20 137 - 140 35 197 - 200 50
21 - 24 6 81 - 84 21 141 - 144 36 201 - 204 51
25 - 28 7 85 - 88 22 145 - 148 37 205 - 208 52
29 - 32 8 89 - 92 23 149 - 152 38 209 - 212 53
33 - 36 9 93 - 96 24 153 - 156 39 213 - 216 54
27 - 40 10 97 - 100 25 157 - 160 40 217 - 220 55
41 - 44 11 101 - 104 26 161 - 164 41 221 - 224 56
45 - 48 12 105 - 108 27 165 - 168 42 225 - 228 57
49 - 52 13 109 - 112 28 169 - 172 43 229 - 232 58
53 - 56 14 113 - 116 29 173 - 176 44 233 - 236 59
57 - 60 15 117 - 120 30 177 - 180 45 239 - 240 60

Athletes = SO Athletes and Minor Unified Partners

Personnel = All Adult Coaches, Chaperones, Bus Drivers, plus any Adult Unified Partners acting as Chaperones

Last-Minute Volunteer Substitutions

SOTX understands that situations come up that necessitate the use of substitute chaperones at events, which is why we really encourage you to have every person who might help out with your delegation at any point to go through the full registration process to become a registered volunteer by completing the four registration steps: submit a completed Class A Volunteer Application, attend General Orientation and Protective Behaviors, and pass a criminal background check.

In case of last minute delegation volunteer substitutions during event registration, the head of delegation must accompany the substitution volunteer to the volunteer table to verify their Class A Volunteer status with the Director of Volunteers. Please note that any substitute who has not completed all four steps of registration must be teamed up with a registered Class A volunteer until he/she receives confirmation that their volunteer status is complete.

Any discovery by SOTX that the HoD had people acting as delegation volunteers without being completely registered will have serious consequences to that HoD, as well as to the delegation itself. Consequences could range from the delegation being prohibited from competing in the next event, to the loss of HoD’s certifications.

Dispensing of Medication

The Permission to Give Medication Form and Medication Log was developed for delegations to use who do not currently have a medication dispensing policy in place. It is NOT required that each delegation use these forms. Please note that prescription medication cannot be administered by volunteer medical personnel at area or chapter competitions.

Event Codes

Aquatics (Swimming)

10mSwim

AQ10AS
15m Walk AQ15WK
15m Unassisted Swim AQ15US
15m Flotation Race AQ15FL
25m Flotation Race AQ25FL
25m Freestyle AQ25MF
50m Freestyle AQ50MF
100m Freestyle AQ100MF
200m Freestyle AQ200MF
400m Freestyle AQ400MF
4x25m Freestyle Relay AQ4X25MF
4x50m Freestyle Relay AQ4X50MF
25m Backstroke AQ25BK
50m Backstroke AQ50BK
100m Backstroke AQ100BK
200m Backstroke AQ200BK
25m Breaststroke AQ25BS
50m Breaststroke AQ50BS
100m Breaststroke AQ100BS
25m Butterfly AQ25BF
50m Butterfly AQ50BF
100m Butterfly AQ100BF
100m Individual Medley AQ100IM
4x25m Medley Relay AQ4X25MR
4x50m Medley Relay AQ4X50MR
1m Springboard Dive (Level 1, 2, 3) AQ1MSD
4x25m Medley Unified Sports® Relay AQ4X25UR
4x50m Medley Unified Sports® Relay AQ4X50UR
4x25m Unified Sports® Relay AQ4X25UF
4x50m Freestyle Unified Sports® Relay AQ4X50UF

Athletics – Track Events

10m Assisted Walk AT10AW
25m Assisted Race AT25AR
50m Assisted Race AT50AR
25m Walk AT25MW
50m Walk AT050W
50m Dash AT050M
100m Dash AT100M
200m Dash AT200M
400m Run AT400M
800m Run AT800M
1500m Run AT1500M
3000m Run AT3000M
4x100m Relay AT4X100M
4x400m Relay AT4X400M
100m Walk AT100W
400m Race Walk AT400W
10m Wheelchair Race AT10WH
25m Wheelchair Race AT25WH
100m Wheelchair Race AT100WH
30m Wheelchair Slalom AT30WS
50m Motorized Wheelchair Slalom AT50MS
4x25m Wheelchair Shuttle Relay AT1WSR
25m Motorized Wheelchair Obstacle Course ATWHOB
Unified Sports® 4x100m Relay AT4X100U
Unified Sports® 4x400m Relay AT4X400U

Athletics – Field Events

Tennis Ball Throw ATTBTD
High Jump ATHIJP
Pentathlon ATPENT
Running Long Jump ATLNJP
At Wheelchair Shot Put Men - 1.81 kg ATWSP1M
At Wheelchair Shot Put Women - 1.36 kg ATSP1W
Shot Put - Men (8 - 11) 3kg ATSP2M
Shot Put - Men 4kg ATSP4M
Shot Put - Women (8-11) 2kg ATSP1W
Shot Put - Women 3kg ATSP2W
Softball Throw ATSOBT
Standing Long Jump ATSTLJ
Mini-Javelin (formerly TurboJav) - Men (8-15) & Women 300g ATWJA3
Mini-Javelin (formerly TurboJav) - Men (16+) 400g ATMJA4
Unified Sports® Pentathlon ATUNPT

Basketball

BB Individual Skills 8-foot Goal BBINSC8
BB Individual Skills 10-foot Goal BBINSC
BB Team Competition BBTEAM
BB Team Skills 8-foot Goal BBTMSK8
BB Team Skills 10-foot Goal BBTMSK
BB Unified Sports® Team BBTEAMU
BB Half-Court 3-on-3, 8-foot Goal BBHALF8
BB Half-Court 3-on-3, 10-foot Goal BBHALF
BB Speed Dribble BBSPDR

Bocce

BC Singles BCSING
BC Doubles BCDBLE
BC Team BCTEAM
BC Unified Sports® Doubles BCDBLEU
BC Unified Sports® Team BCTEAMU
BC Ramp (Half-Court) Singles BCRAMP
BC Half-Court Singles BCHALF
BC Half-Court Doubles BCHALFD
BC Unified Sports (Half-Court) Doubles BCHALFU

Bowling

BO Doubles BODBLE
BO Frame Bowl BOFRAM
BO Singles BOSING
BO Mixed Doubles BOMXDB
BO Team BOTEAM
BO Unassisted Ramp Bowling BOSINR
BO Assisted Ramp Bowling BOSASR
BO Unified Sports® Team BOTEAMU
BO Unified Sports® Doubles BODBLEU

Cycling

1km Time Trial CY1KTT
1km Modified Bicycle Time Trial CY1KMT
5km Modified Bicycle Time Trial CY5KMT
5km Time Trial CY5KTT
10km Road Race CY10KRR
10km Time Trial CY10KTT
25km Road Race CY25KRR
500m Bicycle Modified Time Trial CY5CMT
500m Bicycle Time Trial CY500MTT
15km Road Race CY15KRR
5km Unified Sports® Time Trial CY5KTTU
10km Unified Sports® Time Trial CY10KTTU

Equestrian
(Make sure to list the level on your entry form.)

Dressage (C-I, B-I, B-IP, A, AP) EQDRES
Showmanship
  • (C-I, B-I, C-S, B-S, B-SP, C-SP, B-IP, AP, A)
EQSHOW
Prix Caprilli (A, AP) EQPRCA
Team Relay
  • (C-SP, C-S, C-I, B-S, B-SP)
EQTMRE4
  • Unified Sports®
EQTMRE4U
English Equitation (C-SP, C-S, C-I, B-S, B-SP, B-I, B-IP, AP, A) EQENEQ
Western Equitation(C-SP, C-S, C-I, B-S, B-SP, B-I, B-IP, AP, A) EQWEEQ
Pole Bending (B-I, B-IP, AP, A) EQPOBD
Barrel Racing (B-I, B-IP, AP, A) EQBARC
Western Riding (C-I, B-I, B-IP, AP, A) EQWERI
Figure 8 Stake Race (B-I, B-IP, AP, A) EQSTRC
Working Trails (C-SP, C-S, C-I, B-S, B-SP, B-I, B-IP, AP, A EQWOTR
Drill Team 2
  • (C-SP, C-S, C-I, B-S, B-SP, B-I, B-IP, AP, A)
EQDRT2
  • Unified Sports®
EQDRT2U
Drill Team 4
  • (C-SP, C-S, C-I, B-S, B-SP, B-I, B-IP, AP, A)
EQDRT4
  • Unified Sports®
EQDRT4U

Figure Skating

FS Ice Dancing (Level 1, 2, 3) FSDANC
FS Pair Skating (Level 1, 2) FSPAIR
FS Singles Competition (Level 1, 2, 3, 4) FSSING
FS Individual Skills (1-11) FSSKIL
FS Badge Skills (1-12) FSBDGE
FS Unified Ice Dancing (Level 1, 2, 3) FSDANCU
FS Unified Pair Skating (Level 1, 2) FSPAIRU

Flag Football

FF Individual Skills FFINSC
FF Traditional Team FFTEAM
FF Unified Sports® Team FFTMUN

Gymnastics – Artistic

Vault (Level A) GYAVAU
Wide Beam Walk (Level A, B) GYAWBM
Tumbling (Level A, B) GYATUM
Floor Exercise (Level A, B) GYAFLX
Single Bar (Level A) GYABAR
All-Round (Level A, B GYAALL
Men’s Floor Exercise (Level A, 1, 2, 3) GYMFLX
Men’s Horizontal Bar (Level 1, 2, 3) GYMHBR
Men’s Parallel (Level 1, 2, 3) GYMPAR
Men’s Pommel Horse (Level 1, 2, 3) GYMPOH
Men’s Rings (Level 1, 2, 3) GYMRNG
Men’s Vaulting (Level A, 1, 2, 3) GYMVAU
Men’s All-Round (Level A, 1, 2, 3) GYMALL
Women’s Balance Beam (Level 1, 2, 3) GYWBBM
Women’s Floor Exercise (Level A, 1, 2, 3) GYWFLX
Women’s Uneven Bars (Level 1, 2, 3 GYWUNB
Women’s Vaulting (Level 1, 2, 3) GYWVAU
Women’s All-Round (Level A, 1, 2, 3 GYWALL

Gymnastics – Rhythmic

Group Routine Ball GYRBALG
Group Routine Hoop GYGHOP
Group Routine Ribbon GYGRIB
All-Round (Level A, B) GYRALLA
All-Round (Level 1, 2, 3) GYRALL
Club GYRCLB
Rhythmic Floor GYRFLX
Ball (Level A, B) GYRBALA
Ball (Level 1, 2, 3) GYRBAL
Hoop (Level A, B) GYRHOOA
Hoop (Level 1, 2, 3) GYRHOO
Rope (Level A, B) GYRROPA
Rope (Level 1) GYRROP
Ribbon (Level A, B) GYRRIBA
Ribbon (Level 1, 2, 3) GYRRIB

Golf

GF Individual Skills (Level 1) GFINSC
GF Alternate Shot Team Play (Level 2) GFASTM
GF Unified Sports® Team Play (Level 3) GFTEAMU
GF Individual Stroke Play 9-Holes (Level 4) GFSING9
GF Individual Stroke Play 18-Holes (Level 5) GFSING18

Kayaking

KY Singles Tourist 200m KAT200M
KY Singles Tourist 500m KAT500M
KY Doubles Tourist 200m KADT200M
KY Doubles Tourist 500m KADT500M
KY Unified Doubles Tourist 200m) KAT200MU
KY Unified Doubles Tourist 500m KAT500MU

Powerlifting

Bench Press PLBHPR
Bench Press (Females) PLBHPRF
Combination 2 (Bench, Deadlift) PLCOM2
Combination 2 (Bench, Deadlift - Females) PLCOMB2F
Combination 3 (Bench, Deadlift, Squat) PLCOM3
Comb. 3 (Bench, DL, Squat - Females) PLCOMBCF
Deadlift PLDEAD
Deadlift (Females) PLDEADF
Squat PLSQAT
Squat (Females) PLSQATF
Unified Sports® Bench PLUNBR
Unified Sports® Deadlift PLUNDL
Unified Sports® Squat PLUNSQ
Unified Sports® Combination (Bench, Deadlift) PLUNC2
Unified Sports® Combination (Bench, Deadlift, Squat) PLUNC3

Roller Skating

30m Carpet Race RS30CR
30m Slalom Race RS30SL
30m Straight Line Race RS30SR
100m Race the Track RS100M
300m Race the Track RS300M
500m Race the Track RS500M
1000m Race the Track RS1000M
200m Two-Person Relay Race RS2X100M
400m Four-Person Relay Race RS4X100M
RS Freestyle Singles (Level 1, 2, 3, 4) RSFREE
RS Unified Sports® Freestyle RSUNFR
RS Unified Sports® Relay RSUNRE

Sailing

SA Unified Sports® (Level I, 2) SAMONHU
SA Unified Sports® (Level 3, 4, 5) SAMONH

Soccer

Five-A-Side Soccer FBFIVE
SC Individual Skills FBINSC
Unified Sports® 5-a-Side Soccer FBFIVEU
SC 11-a-Side Team FBTEAM
SC Unified Sports® 11-a-Side Team FBTEAMU

Softball

Base Race SBBASE
Bat For Distance SBBATD
SB Individual Skills SBINSC
Slow-Pitch Team Competition SBTEAM
Co-Ed Slow Pitch Team Competition SBCOED
T-Ball Competition SBTEEB
SB Unified Sports® Team SBTEAMU
Coach Pitch SBCHPH

Speed Skating

SP 50m race SS050M
SP 100m race SS100M

Table Tennis

TT Doubles TTDBLE
TT Individual Skills 2 TTINSC
TT Mixed Doubles TTMXDB
TT Singles TTSING
TT Wheelchair Competition TTWHCH
TT Unified Sports® Doubles TTDBEU

Tennis

TN Individual Skills (Level 1 Red) TNINSC
TN Singles (Level 2 Red, Level 3 Orange, Level 4 Green, Level 5 Yellow) TNSING
TN Doubles (Level 2 Red, Level 3 Orange, Level 4 Green, Level 5 Yellow) TNDBLE
TN Unified Sports® Doubles (Level 2 Red, Level 3 Orange, Level 4 Green, Level 5 Yellow) TNDBLEU

Triathlon

TR Individual (Level 2) TRIIND
TR Relay (Level 2) TRIREL
TR Unified Sports® Relay (Level 2) TRIUNR

Volleyball

VB Individual Skills 1 VBINSC
VB Individual Skills 2 VBINS2
VB Team Competition VBTEAM
VB Unified Sports® Team VBTEAMU

Competition Registration Checklist

  1. ____ Athlete Enrollment/Medical Release Form
    • Complete athlete name
    • Check age
    • Check date of birth
    • Day and evening phone numbers
    • Head of delegation name
    • Delegation code
    • Parent/guardian name
    • Parent/guardian address
    • Parent/guardian phone numbers
    • Emergency contact
    • Completed medical history portion
      Physician signature required on back:
      If "yes" on 1-4 and 22
      If "new problem" on 5-9
    • Current prescription
    • Signature and date
      Parent/guardian/athlete signature: required for participation
      May be in lieu of physician if none of the above criteria are met
  2. _____ Copy Athlete Enrollment/Medical Release Forms and submit with entries.
  3. _____ Complete Team Evaluation Questionnaire for team sports.
  4. _____ Complete sport specific forms, if necessary. (Equestrian Liability Team Rosters Release, Negative Coggins, Aquatics Liability Release, Tennis Rating Form, etc.).
  5. _____ Complete athlete entry forms.
    • Delegation name
    • Delegation ID
    • Head coach name
    • Head coach contact numbers
    • Sport
    • Unified Sports® – Identify with "X" Unified Sports® partners only, not traditional athletes
    • Number of athletes
    • Number of teams
    • NO SSN or ID Number required on Athlete Entry Forms
    • Athlete name
    • Athlete gender
    • Athlete date of birth
    • Event code
    • TEAM ID: Link all teams, partners and relays with a Team ID (e.g., 01, 02)
    • Time/height/distance/weight
    • Total
  6. ____ Complete the chapter-generated Delegation Personnel Entry Form that you received from the Director of Volunteer Services.
    • Registration Process
    • A chapter-generated form will be mailed out a minimum of three weeks prior to the chapter Games entry deadline to the HoD of every delegation that attended last year's event. If your delegation did not attend a specific chapter Games last year, but plans to attend this year, contact the Director of Volunteer Services (dir_volunteer.chp@sotx.org) to get your chapter-generated Delegation Entry Form.
      1. HoD will use the latest chapter-generated Delegation Personnel Entry Form for his/her specific delegation detailing who is currently eligible to attend as a delegation volunteer.
      2. HoD will complete as usual the following areas on the Delegation Personnel Entry Form: a) the delegation summary tables and b) the delegation information table.
      3. HoD will indicate every person who is attending an event by marking their official role code in the box to the left of the person's name - refer to the list in this section for complete list of official role codes.
    • Make sure that all information is provided as needed.
    • Make sure to list your delegation personnel by legal names rather than nicknames. For example, the chapter database would have John Woods, not Bubba Woods.
  7. ____ Count up the five following groups by gender: SO athletes, minor Unified partners, adult Unified partners (not chaperoning), adult Unified partners (also chaperoning), and all remaining adult personnel. See grid below for details.

Delegation Entry Form Instructions

Entries for chapter-level competitions must be on the latest chapter-generated Delegation Personnel Entry Form. The most current Delegation Personnel Entry Form has the season noted at the top of the page: 2017 Winter, 2017 Spring/Summer, or 2017 Fall.

For area-level competitions, please continue to use the blank Delegation Entry Form.

Make sure delegation information is filled in correctly. All reports will be mailed from that data.

Delegation Name (e.g., Kingsville)
Delegation ID (e.g., KIN-02,02 is your area)
Head of delegation (e.g., Sue Jones)
Address (e.g., 111 Block Dr.)
City, State, ZIP (e.g., Austin, TX 78753)
Day, night, cell phone numbers (e.g., 512.586.9542 day/512.222.5856 night)
Head of delegation email (e.g., coachsue@gmail.com)

For entry at any level, unified partners (regardless of age) must be included on the Delegation Personnel Form and the Athlete Entry Form.

Personnel Information

Personnel consists of the head of delegation, coaches, assistant coaches, chaperones and bus drivers. The roster of eligible delegation volunteers is listed by gender and last name; so, first, all eligible females are alphabetized by last name, then all the eligible males are alphabetized by last name.

The only field you have to fill in is:
Role Code ......................................................... (e.g., BCHC)

The following information is already listed on the Delegation Personnel Entry Form for you:
Last name ......................................................... (e.g., Jones)
First name ........................................................ (e.g., Susan)
Nickname .......................................................... (e.g., Sue)
Gender ............................................................ (e.g., female or male)
Age ............................................................... (e.g., 27)
Class A Expiration Date ........................................... (e.g., 11/12/2013 or 2/1/2013*)
* - An asterisk next to a person's Class A Expiration Date means his/her Class A Volunteer Form expires within six months. After that expiration date, he/she will be ineligible to be a Class A volunteer until a new Class A Volunteer Form is submitted to SOTX and processed by SOTX.
Coach Certifications ............................................. (e.g., AQ only current season certifications are listed)

The codes are below. If the head of delegation is also the head coach, list both the head of delegation code AND the head coach code.

Please list all personnel information on one page unless you have more than 10. If you have more than 10, use an additional delegation form.

Delegation Summary

All coaches will fill this area out.

Official Role Codes

Aquatics Head Coach AQHC
Athletics Head Coach ATHC
Basketball Head Coach BBHC
Bocce Head Coach BCHC
Bowling Head Coach BOHC
Bus Driver BSDR
Caddie CADDIE
Chaperone CHPN
Coaching Staff COST
Cycling Head Coach CYHC
Equestrian Head Coach EQHC
Figure Skating Head Coach FSHC
Flag Football Head Coach FFHC
Gymnastics Head Coach GYHC
Golf Head Coach GFHC

Athlete Entry Form Instructions

Please use one Athlete Entry Form per sport, but put all totals on page 1 of 2.

You can now combine individual events with relay events together on one page; however, it must be the same sport.

Reminder: all relay times must be entered with team total scores on ALL athletes.

Delegation name (e.g., Kingsville)
Delegation ID (e.g., KIN-02)
Head coach name (e.g., Sue Jones)
Head coach day and night phone (e.g., 512.586.9542 day / 512.222.5856 night)
Head coach Address, City, State, zip (e.g., 34 Sue Street, Austin, TX 78758)
Unified Sports® partner (e.g., Place a check if athlete is Unified)
No SSN or ID number required
Athlete’s last name (e.g., Smith)
Athlete’s first name (e.g., Joe)
Sex (e.g., M/F)
Date of birth (e.g., 09/11/74) Month / Day / Year
Event code (e.g., AT100M) see codes on pages N-4 to N-7
Time (e.g., 00:19:19) - minutes: seconds: tenths
Height/distance (e.g., 15m, 95cm) measured in meters and centimeters
Points (e.g., 1,408) The following sports require points:
(e.g., bowling, pentathlon and powerlifting)
Team ID List all teams, partners, and relays using a team ID
Event Level List the athlete skill level if other than 1
Relay Position List the order in which the relay athletes will compete

Local competition or two scrimmages must be listed on the Athlete Entry Form to advance to area competitions (not Chapter competition).


Section O:
Sports Table

Sport Individual Events Team Events
 

Level 1

Level 2

Individual

Modified

Team Competition

Unified Sports®

2016 SIG

Chapter Games

Aquatics

  • 10m assisted swim
  • 15m walk (area, chapter event discretion)
  • 15m unassisted swim
  • 15m flotation race
  • 25m flotation race
 
  • 25, 50, 100, 200, 400m freestyle
  • 25, 50, 100m breaststroke
  • 25, 50, 100m, 200m backstroke
  • 25, 50, 100m butterfly
  • 100m individual medley
  • Diving: 1m springboard
 
  • 4 X 25m freestyle relay
  • 4 X 50m freestyle relay
  • 4 X 25m medley relay
  • 4 X 50m medley relay

Yes

Q - 2

Fall

Athletics

  • 10m assisted walk
  • 25m, 50m assisted race
  • 25m, 50m walk
  • ball throw for distance
  • standing long jump

    Wheelchair (WC) events:

  • 10, 25m WC race
  • 30m WC slalom
  • 25m motorized WC obstacle
  • 50m motorized WC slalom
 
  • 50, 100, 200, 400, 800, 1500, 3000m run
  • 100, 400m race walk
  • running long jump
  • high jump
  • shot put
  • softball throw
  • pentathlon (100, 400m, shot put, high jump, running long jump)
  • mini-javelin (300g, 400g)

    Wheelchair (WC) events:

  • 100m WC race, shot put
 
  • 4 X 100m relay
  • 4 X 400m relay

    Wheelchair (WC) events:

  • 4 X 25m WC shuttle relay

Yes

P - 2

Summer

Basketball

Individual Skills

  • target pass – spot shot
    (8 foot and 10 foot)
  • 10m dribble – speed

    Individual Skills

  • dribble
   

half-court 3-on-3
(8 foot and 10 foot)

Yes

Yes

P - 6

Summer

Bocce

   

singles

 
  • doubles
  • team (4 person)

Yes

Q - 5

Fall

Bowling

  • target bowl
  • frame bowl
  • assisted and unassisted ramp bowl
 

individual event bowling

 

Team bowling:

  • male/female

    Doubles:

  • male/female/mixed

Yes

R - 2

Winter

Cycling

5km modified time trial

Level 1 (Beginner)

  • 1km modified time trial
  • 500m time trial or 500m modified bicycle time trial

Level 2 (Intermediate)

  • 1, 5, 10km time trial

Level 3 (Advanced)

  • 5, 10, 15, 25km road race
  • 5, 10km time trial
   1, 5, 10km Unified Sports Tandem Time Trial  Yes

P - 8

Summer

Equestrian

   

Level C-SP, C-S, B-S, B-SP

  • English equitation
  • Western equitation
  • Working trails
  • Showmanship

    Level C-I

  • Same as above levels plus:
  • Dressage
  • Showmanship at halter/bridle classes
  • Western Riding Level B-I, B-IP

  • Same as above plus:
  • Pole bending/barrel racing

    Level A, AP

  • Same as above levels plus:
  • Prix Caprilli
 

Level C-S

  • Drill team (all levels)
  • Team relays

Yes

P - 9

Summer

Figure Skating

Individual Skills:

  • Skills Competition 1-11
  • Badge 1-12
  • Unified

Unified

Levels 1, 2, 3, 4

  • Singles competitions

    Levels 1, 2, 3

  • Ice dancing/Pairs
 

Level 1, 2

  • Pair skating

Yes

R - 5

Winter

Flag Football

Individual Skills

     

Yes

Yes

Q - 6

Fall

Golf

Individual Skills:

  • Long putt, short putt, chip shot, pitch shot, iron shot, wood shot

Level 2

  • 9-hole, partner, alternate shot

Level 4

  • 9 holes

    Level 5

  • 18 holes
 

Level 3

  • See Unified Sports®
  • 18 holes
  • (alternate shot format)

Yes

Q - 8

Fall

Gymnastics: Artistic Rhythmic

   

Men’s events: Level 1, 2, 3

  • Floor, rings, vaulting, horizontal bar, pommel horse, all-round, parallel bars

    Women’s events: Level 1, 2, 3

  • Vaulting, uneven bars, balance beam, floor exercise, all-round

    Mixed gender events:

  • Vaulting, wide beam, tumbling, floor exercise, single-bar, all-around

    Women’s Rhythmic: Level 1, 2, 3

  • Rope, ball, hoop, ribbon, floor
 

Level 1

  • Hoop

    Level 2

  • Ball

    Level 3

  • Ribbon

No

P - 12

Summer

Kayaking

   

Singles Tourist

  • 200m, 500m
 

Doubles Tourist

  • 200m, 500m

    Unified Sports Doubles Tourist

  • 200m, 500m

Yes

Q - 10

Fall

Powerlifting

   
  • bench press
  • squat
  • deadlift
  • combination
 

See Unified Sports®

Yes

R - 6

Winter

Roller Skating

  • 30m straight line race
  • 30m slalom race
  • school figures
 

Artistic

  • school figured (2, 3, 4)
  • freestyle singles (2, 3, 4)

    Speed Competition

  • 100, 300, 500, 1000m
  • race the track

30m

carpet ride

  • 2 X 100m two-man
  • 4 X 100m four-man

Yes

R - 7

Winter

Sailing

   

Level 4

 

Level 1 - Level 3

Yes

Q - 11

Fall

Soccer

Individual Skills:

  • dribbling
  • shooting
  • control
  • pass
   

5-a-side

  • 11-a-side

Yes

P - 13

Summer

Softball

Individual Skills:

  • base race
  • bat for distances

Individual Skills:

  • base run
  • hitting
  • fielding
  • throwing
 

t-ball

coach pitch

  • slowpitch team
  • slowpitch coed

Yes

Q - 12

Fall

Speed Skating

   
  • 50m race
  • 100m race
     

R - 6

Winter

Table Tennis

   
  • singles
 

doubles

Yes

R - 8

Winter

Tennis

  • Individual Skills
  • red ball
  • forehand volley
  • backhand volley
  • forehand ground stroke
  • backhand ground stroke
  • serve-deuce
  • serve-advantage
  • alternate ground strokes
  • singles - red (42 ft.)
    - Level 2
  • singles - orange (60 ft.)
    - Level 3
  • singles - green (78 ft.)
    - Level 4
  • singles - yellow (78 ft.)
    - Level 5
  • singles - yellow (78 ft.) - Level 3
 
  • doubles - red (42 ft.)
    - Level 2
  • doubles - orange (60 ft.)
    - Level 3
  • doubles - green (78 ft.)
    - Level 4
  • doubles - yellow (78 ft.)
    - Level 5

Yes

Levels 2, 3, 4, 5

P - 14

Summer

Triathlon

 
  • Level 2
   

Relay (Level 2)

Yes

Q - 16

Fall

Volleyball

  • Individual Skills
  • volleyball juggle
  • volleyball pass
  • toss and hit
  • serving
  • passing
  • overhead passing
   

Yes

Yes

R - 8

Winter


Section P:
Summer Games

What began in 1969 as a track and field event for 350 people with intellectual disabilities continues for the 48th consecutive year as Special Olympics Texas presents its annual Summer Games, May 25-28. The 2017 Summer Games will be hosted by the University of Texas at Arlington.

During this season, athletes around the state will be training and competing in seven different sports: Athletics, Basketball, Cycling, Equestrian, Gymnastics, Soccer and Tennis. Check with your area office for entries deadlines and competition dates.

Resource Information

To request specific information on individual sports and competitions, consult the sport’s National Governing Body Rules and the Official Special Olympics Summer Sports Rules, which may be obtained through the area office or at www.specialolympics.org. Below are SOTX Sport Directors and their contact information. Please use these contacts for rule-specific questions and information.

Athletics/Track

Paul Brockway
908 Golden Aster Court
Burleson, TX 76028

pauldbrockway@sbcglobal.net

682.472.6342 Cell

Athletics/Field

Missy Patterson
7914 Coastway Drive
Rowlett, TX 75088

mmpatterson99@verizon.net

972.567.9719 Cell

Basketball

Nancy Walling

nlwalling@gmail.com

512.657.6755 Cell

512.594.0552 Work

Cycling

Terry Cook
161 East Overlook Mountain Road
Buda, TX 78610

terry@keasler.com

512.632.1773 Cell

Equestrian

Karen Abbott
24288 Spring Drive
Hockley, TX 77447

ktatherapy@sbcglobal.net

281.734.8601 Cell

Gymnastics

Amy Meyers
130 Terrell Road #3
San Antonio, TX 78209

abgymnastics@yahoo.com

Soccer

Jesse McNeil
9200 World Cup Way, Suite 202
Frisco, TX 75083

jmcneil@fcdallas.net

214.532.2367 Cell

Tennis

Cindy Benzon 4008 Louetta Road, #234 Spring, TX 77388

benzon@texas.usta.com

832.264.7773 Cell

Chapter Summer Games

This year's Summer Games features six sports (athletics, basketball, cycling, gymnastics, soccer and tennis). Additionally, events including Opening Ceremonies, Victory Dance, Closing Ceremonies, Athlete Village, Healthy Athletes, various sports clinics and demonstrations offer unparalleled variety for all Games attendees. Entry fees will be $30 for each competing athlete and Unified Sports® partner. Scratches made at games registration and during the weekend of games will result in a $15.00 administration fee per athlete and Unified Partner. Registration will be held on Thursday, May 25.

Equestrian is considered a stand-alone competition. Athletes do have the option to participate in Equestrian and one Summer Games sport at the Chapter competition. The Chapter Equestrian competition will be held in Bryan at the Brazos County Expo Complex, May 19-21. Entry fees will be $30 for each competing athlete and Unified Sports® partner. Registration will be held on Friday, May 19. Scratches made at games registration and during the weekend of games will result in a $15.00 administration fee per athlete and Unified Partner.

Check your area office for entry deadline. No late entries will be accepted. Coaches must submit their entries to their area office.

To qualify for participation at the 2017 Summer Games in athletics, basketball, cycling, equestrian, gymnastics, soccer or tennis, all athletes must have competed in their sport of choice in the sanctioned area competition. In addition, they must have a current Athlete Enrollment/Medical Release Form on file, and correct and complete athlete entry forms. All forms must be submitted by the established deadlines for entries for Summer Games. Athletes in the above sports are not required to place third or better at area competitions in order to qualify for participation in Summer Games. Basketball is the only sport with a quota. The quota is distributed to areas based on area participation.

It is recommended, however, that placing third or better at local or area competition be considered strongly when selecting Summer Games participants. A maximum number of entries for these sports will be established, if necessary, to preserve the safety and integrity of the event.

In athletics and basketball, an allocation system exists. Due to safety, scheduling and logistical considerations, each region receives an allotment for athletics (track and field) events. Time constraints and facility availability determine the number of basketball teams that are able to compete at Summer Games.

Coaches are encouraged to enter their athletes in sports other than athletics (track and field) at Summer Games. There are many advantages to entering other sports, including additional competition time, no allocation quotas, easier supervision of athletes, scheduling that permits a team to know more precisely when and where it will compete, and increased opportunity for scholarships.

For all team competitions in which there are individual skills, SOTX will require a minimum of 8 participants to offer the skills event at Chapter Games. This will be determined at the time entries are due to the Chapter office.

2017 Chapter Games Sport Maximums

Basketball – 125 teams (traditional and Unified)

Athletics – 2,600 athletes participants

2017 Chapter Games Sport Minimums

In order to host these events at Chapter Games, the following minimum entries numbers must be met. If not met at the time of entries, these events will not be held at Chapter Summer Games. If minimums are not met, delegations will be notified and athletes scratched.

  • Individual Basketball Skills - must have a minimum of 8 athletes entered to host event.
  • Individual Soccer Skills - must have a minimum of 8 athletes entered to host event.
  • Traditional 3-on-3 Half Court Team - must have a minimum of 9 teams in each hoop height to host event.

Athletics

Advancement in Athletics is Based on:

  • Allocations applied to specific events within a sport.
  • Preliminary and final competitions are held in designated events during Summer Games. Events and divisions selected for preliminaries include the 50 meter dash (male and female), 100 meter dash (male and female), 200 meter dash (male), 4x100 meter relays (male and female) as well as all field events (male and female).

Certain events within athletics have a quota (50 meter dash, 100 meter dash, softball throw, shot put and standing long jump). The number per event is the maximum number an area may enter in those events – an area is not required to enter anyone in the quota events.

For example, if an area has trained all its athletes to compete in the running long jump, they are not required to enter anyone in the standing long jump.

The quota system for specific events is determined on a percentage basis of the total athletic allocation. The percentages are as follows:

  • Track Events

    • 50m – 43 percent
    • 100m – 33 percent
    • All other track events – open
  • Field Events

    • High Jump – open
    • Softball Throw – 48 percent
    • Running Long Jump – open
    • Standing Long Jump – 26 percent
    • Shot Put – 20 percent

For example, Area 29 has a total athletics allocation of 230. Of those 230, no more than 43 percent (99) may be entered in the 50 meter dash and 33 percent (76) in the 100 meter dash. The other 55 must enter other running events – the 200 meter dash, 400 meter run, 800 meter run, etc. 99 + 76 + 55 = 230. If, however, only 60 enter in the 50 meter dash and 25 enter the 100 meter dash, then 145 may enter in other running events, 60 + 25 + 145 = 230.

The same method applies in field events. The same 230 people may also enter one field event each, and one relay each. In this example, Area 29 can bring no more than 26 percent (60) of its total track and field athletes to compete in the standing long jump or 48 percent (110) athletes in the softball throw. If Area 29 maxes out on its shot put entries (20 percent = 46 athletes), standing long jump entries and softball throw entries, then that leaves 14 athletes to compete in the high jump and running long jump. It is best to allow athletes to compete in their best event as the numbers allow.

Athletics Events Offered

The following events are sanctioned by Special Olympics Texas and are to be offered at all local, area and chapter competitions. The actual events scheduled and conducted at local, area and chapter competitions will be determined by a minimum number of entries in each event.

  • 10m Assisted Walk
  • 25m Assisted Race
  • 50m Assisted Race
  • 25m Walk
  • 50m Walk
  • 100m Race Walk
  • 400m Race Walk
  • 50m Dash
  • 100m Dash
  • 200m Dash
  • 400m Dash
  • 800m Run
  • 1500m Run
  • 3000m Run
  • 25m Wheelchair Race
  • 100m Wheelchair Race
  • 30m Wheelchair Slalom
  • 50m Motorized Wheelchair Slalom
  • 10m Wheelchair Race
  • 4x25m Wheelchair Shuttle Relay
  • 4x100m Relay - Unified
  • 4x400m Relay - Unified
  • 25m Motorized Wheelchair Obstacle Race
  • 4x100m Relay
  • 4x400m Relay

Pentathlon and Unified Sports® Events

  • Includes the 100m, 400m, Shot Put, High Jump and Running Long Jump.
  • Unified Pentathlon will be offered in a coed format. This will be structured with a pair made up of one athlete and one Unified Partner, each competing in all 5 events. Scoring will result by combining both the athlete and Unified Partner's scores for a total.

Field Events

  • Standing Long Jump
  • Running Long Jump
  • High Jump
  • Tennis Ball Throw
  • Softball Throw
  • Mini-Javelin 300g and 400g
  • Shot Put
  • Wheelchair Shot Put

Track Events Information

  • An athlete may enter one track event, one field event and one relay event, or the athlete may enter the pentathlon and one relay event.
  • An athlete competing with a wheelchair or assisted device may enter  into two track events and one field event. For track - either two wheelchair events, or one wheelchair event and one assisted event, or two assisted events. For field - one field event.
  • Unified Partners will allowed to participate in up to two Unified Sports relays in Athletics.
  • The Official Special Olympics Sports Rules shall govern all Special Olympics athletics competitions. As an international sports program, Special Olympics has created these rules based upon United States Track & Field Association rules for athletics. United States Track & Field Association rules shall be implemented except when they are in conflict with the Official Special Olympics Sports Rules. In such cases, the Official Special Olympics Sports Rules shall apply.
  • Long distance runners may enter two distance races (800m and longer), plus one relay race. Athletes who choose this option will not have the option to participate in a field event.
  • An athlete who uses a wheelchair may enter two track events and one field event.
  • Assisted walks are for those athletes who need a mechanical or adaptive device (crutches, cane, walker, pushing a wheelchair) to maintain an upright position. (Shoe inserts are not considered a mechanical or adaptive device.) Another person may not physically assist athletes. A guide rope for visually-impaired athletes is not considered a mechanical device and thus these athletes will be heated with sighted runners of equal ability.
  • Please obtain a copy of the Official Special Olympics Sports Rules for detailed information regarding wheelchair events, motorized wheelchair events, assisted walks, other modified events and pentathlon scoring tables.
  • In wheelchair races, competition management has the option to space athletes out, using more than one lane.

Qualifying Times

Qualifying times are required for entries at the area and chapter games in the following events

100m Wheelchair Dash 2 minutes
200m Dash 50 seconds
400m Run 2 minutes
800m Run 5 minutes
1500m Run 10 minutes, 30 seconds
3000m Run 23 minutes
400m Relay 2 minutes
400m Race Walk 5 minutes
25m Wheelchair Race 3 minutes

Qualifying times do not apply for local competition.

Athletes whose entry scores exceed qualifying times will be deleted from that event.

Spiked Track Shoes

  • Spiked track and field shoes are allowed in Special Olympics Texas athletics competition.
  • Guidelines are established in the USA Track & Field Association rules, but the exact maximum length of spikes allowed varies from meet to meet since it is determined by the specifications of the venue where the meet is being held (different track surfaces allow for different sized spikes).
  • Organizers should share information about spike specifications with coaches well in advance of competition. If uncertain, coaches should always contact SOTX staff or competition organizers for clarification.

Pentathlon

  • The SOI Sports Rules state that the events must be conducted in the following order 100 meter run, long jump, shot put, high jump, 400 meter run.
    Modification: competition directors have the option to alter the order of the events (with proper justification such as weather, schedule conflicts within the meet and equipment challenges/availability).
  • Pentathlon high jumpers are allowed to jump at every centimeter increment and are allowed to jump at a minimum starting height that is below that of the standard high jump minimum.
  • Modifications: All high jumpers (pentathlon athletes included) must start at the minimum high jump height listed in the SOI Sports Rules (which will be 1 meter). Each increment will be raised 3 centimeters after that. Each competitor will be allowed two minutes between consecutive jumps. So, pentathlon scoring in the high jump will begin at 1.
  • Any jump below 1 meter is not permitted and will not be used in scoring. This same criteria applies to athletes who are entered in the high jump, but not the pentathlon.
  • SOTX recommends but does not require that competition directors post the schedule for each of the five pentathlon events before the meet so that participants can plan accordingly. There must be a minimum of 30 minutes between the time one event ends and the next event begins for any athlete.
  • All pentathlon athletes will be allowed to also compete in one relay event in an athletics competition provided there is not a scheduling conflict.
  • Pentathletes will be recognized at competitions with a different colored lanyard on their medal to distinguish them from traditional event awards.

Athletics Rabbit Percentages

Track Events

All track events will utilize a 25 percent rabbit percentage.

Field Events

  • All throws will utilize a 35 percent rabbit percentage.
  • All jumps will utilize a 20 percent rabbit percentage.
  • The pentathlon will utilize a 20 percent rabbit percentage.

Relay Information

  • 400m (4 x 100), 1600m (4 x 400), Unified Sports® relays and wheelchair relay
    • Relay teams will be placed in divisions by age groups: junior, senior and masters. Athletes in different age divisions may participate on the same team if necessary. In this case, the team must be entered in the oldest age division represented. Alternates are considered team members and their ages will also be considered in determining the age division the team will enter.
      • Team members and alternates may not be listed as team members or alternates on any other team.
      • Team member rosters must be finalized during registration. Teams not meeting the 4 member minimum will be scratched following registration.
      • Team members must remain the same for both prelims and finals.

Mixed-Gender Relays

  • Mixed-gender (a team consisting of any combination of males and females) relays will be offered at the chapter level at the Summer Games.
  • Area athletics competition committees will have the option to offer mixed-gender relays at their area competition should their facilities and schedule allow.
  • NOTE: All mixed-gender relays will be run in the male division, regardless of the number of females (1, 2 or 3) on the four person relay team.

25m & 50m Assisted Race

This event provides athletes the opportunity to run, jog and/or walk without being disqualified for running or jogging in a walking event.

4 x 25m Wheelchair Shuttle Relay

  • Each competitor will complete 25 meters of the relay.
  • Verbal prompts will be allowed while walking in front of an impaired athlete using a wheelchair, provided that no physical assistance is given and it is not impeding the athlete.

Field Events Information

Standing Long Jump

Weather and facilities permitting, the Standing Long Jump with take place where athletes jump into a sand pit, usually at the Running Long Jump venue.

Running Long Jump

A minimum of one meter is required  for this event. Coaches may request from an official the opportunity to place  a take-off mark.

High Jump

The minimum opening height for High Jump is one meter. The bar will be raised in three cm increments for each successful jump after that.

Pentathlon High Jump

The same procedures apply from High Jump to Pentathlon High Jump. However, since these athletes are working for POINTS, should  a coach request it, their athlete may attempt to gain more points by jumping in one cm increments. This accommodation is made only if requested and only after the official event is finished.

Tennis Ball Throw

The maximum distance allowed for the Tennis Ball Throw is 10 meters. Should your athlete throw beyond 10 meters, that throw will be marked as a scratch and will not be used in scoring. Should they do this on all three attempts, it will result in a disqualification and a Participant ribbon awarded. In this event, we do allow competitors to throw three consecutive times in the spirit of efficiency and athlete safety.

Softball Throw

The maximum distance alloed for the Softball Throw is 35 meters. Should your athlete throw beyond 35 meters, that throw will be marked as a scratch and will not be used in scoring. Should they do this on all three attempts in the Pre-Lim round, it will result in a disqualification and they will not go to Finals. Should they do this in Finals, it will result in a disqualification and they will receive a Participant ribbon.

Mini Jav

Female (all age groups): 300g

Male (ages 8-15): 300g

Male (16 and older): 400g

Necessary equipment found at www.turbojav.com and www.gophersports.com.

Shot Put

Female (8-11): 2kg

Male (8-11): 3kg

Female (12 & older): 3kg

Male (12 and older): 4kg

A Wheelchair Shot Put division will be allowed for athletes using a wheelchair. Both Male and Female competitors will use the 2kg shot. If an athlete chooses, they are allowed to compete in the regular division of Shot Put, but the weight of the shot must match the competitors in this group.

Pentathlon Procedures at Chapter Summer Games

A detailed schedule of events will be given prior to competition. There is no longer an official Pentathlon Coordinator at Chapter Summer Games. Each Coach is responsible for getting their athlete to the appropriate staging time for their events. Please have your schedule and your map and be prepared to have your athlete ready. All scoring will be completed by the Officials running each individual event. Awarding will follow competition on the second day as soon as the scores can be tallied.

Basketball

Events Offered

The following events are sanctioned by Special Olympics Texas and are to be offered at all local, area and chapter competitions. The actual events scheduled and conducted at local, area and chapter competitions will be determined by a minimum number of entries in each event.

  • Unified Sports® Team Competition 5-on-5
  • Traditional 5-on-5 Team Competition
  • Traditional 3-on-3 Team Competition
    • 8 foot and 10 foot goal divisions
  • Individual Skills
  • Team Skills

General Information

The Official Special Olympics Sports Rules shall govern all Special Olympics basketball competitions. As an international sports program, Special Olympics has created these rules based upon National Federation of High School Coaches Association (NFHSA) rules for basketball. National Federation of High School Coaches Association (NFHSA) rules shall be employed except when they are in conflict with the Official Special Olympics Sports Rules. In such cases, the official Special Olympics Sports Rules shall apply.

Individual Skills Competition

The individual skills contest is a developmental opportunity.

Basketball Skills will consist of three events: Target Pass, 10M Dribble and Spot Shot. Speed Dribble may be substituted for 10M Dribble. Entrants who want to substitute Speed Dribble for the 10M Dribble, must register to participate in Basketball Skills and the Speed Dribble (event code: BBSPDR).

Team Skills Competition

Each team for Team Skills wil have a maximum roster size of 8 athletes.

Download the Basketball Team Evaluation Questionnaire

Team Competition

These are modifications of FIBA and NFHSA rules which may be used when conducting Special Olympics basketball team competitions.

  • A SOTX Basketball Team Evaluation Questionnaire (TEQ) Form must be completed and submitted with athlete entries prior to every area, regional and chapter competition.
  • Roster maximum is 12, and minimum is five.
  • A smaller basketball (28 inches in circumference and between 18 - 20 ounces in weight) may be used for women’s and junior's division competition.
  • Due to safety risks, the use of assisted devices such as canes, walkers, wheelchairs and service dogs are prohibited in team sports. Athletes who require assisted devices may compete in Individual Skills contests should they meet the performance requirements.
  • SOTX recommends, for lower level basketball teams, a minimum number of 7 participants on a roster.

Timing

Chapter basketball competition at Summer Games will not have a running clock. All games will be conducted as per National Governing Body rules in regards to time clock stoppages. Reminders:

2-9-1 . . . When a foul occurs, an official shall signal the timer to stop the clock.
The official shall then designate the offender to the scorers and indicate with finger(s) the number of free throws.

2-9-2 . . . When a team is entitled to a throw-in, an official shall clearly signal:

  • The act which caused the ball to become dead (foul or violation).
  • The throw-in spot unless it followed a successful goal or an awarded goal.
  • The team entitled to the throw-in.

2-12-5 . . . Establishes a warning signal at 20 seconds before the expiration of the 30 second interval permitted for replacing a disqualified or injured player.
Rationale: The warning horn will be consistent with other timing situations and will communicate to the coach that the substitution interval is about to end.

8-1-3 . . . Reduces the number of players permitted on marked lane spaces during free throws (not including the free thrower) to four defensive and two offensive players with the lane spaces closest to the free-throw line (and the shooter) remaining vacant.
Rationale: This change will help reduce the amount of rough play during free throws and may provide the defense a rebounding advantage. Fewer players on the lane should make the free throw situation easier to officiate.

  • All traditional games within Special Olympics Texas will consist of four periods, each six minutes long.
  • In overtime games, the length of the overtime is half of the time of a regular quarter.
    For a six minute quarter, the overtime is three minutes.
  • Coaches may call timeouts. Refer to NGB rule book for guidelines.

Competition

  • A player may be allowed to shuffle his/her feet while holding the ball without changing position on the court.
  • A player may be allowed to take one extra step when gaining possession of the ball from a dribble or a pass.
  • Two (2) free throws begins on the seventh team foul in each half.
  • Players occupying a marked lane space are restricted from moving until the ball touches the ring or backboard or until the free throw ends.

Uniform/Apparel

  • Uniform shirts should have numbers on the front (four inch) and back (six inch). These numbers must comply with National Governing Body rules.
  • If the shirt is designed to be worn inside the shorts, it shall be tucked in.
  • Pockets on shorts must be secured (closed) to prevent injury to another player.
  • Undershirts (T-shirts), if worn, should all be of the same solid color (can be different color than uniform), but all undershirts must be same color and shall not have frayed or ragged edges

Full Court Press Restrictions – An Option in Lower Divisions of Basketball

The Chapter Sports Management Team has determined that to increase the quality of competition divisioning and the opportunity for athlete skill development in lower divisions, that a full court press restriction can be imposed. The classification team at area and chapter competitions can now determine whether a full court press will be allowed in certain lower divisions during competition.

  • A full court press is defined as: defensive pressure in the backcourt on a change of possession.
  • Note: Teams that wish to full court press at any time during the tournament MUST show the full court press during classification.

Consequences for teams using the full court press in a non-press division are:

  • First Offense: Team warning issued by official.
  • Second Offense and Thereafter: Personal technical foul issued each time to offending player by official.

The Chapter SMT feels that Special Olympics Texas basketball will benefit from this rule implementation at the lower levels where basketball team and individual player skills are still developing.

3 on 3 Basketball

  • The roster maximum in 3-on-3 basketball is six players.

Unified Sports® Basketball

Teams follow NFHS and Special Olympics rules.

  • Partners, people without intellectual disabilities, must be identified on lineups and lineups must be exchanged between coaches.
  • Teams must have three athletes and two partners on the court at all times. If the ratio is not maintained at any time, the team not in compliance must forfeit.
  • A non-playing, dual-certified bench coach must be designated at the beginning of the match. The coach may not be listed as a player for that game or enter the game as a player.
  • Dominant play: will be a judgment call determined by the officials on the court. Penalty will be a verbal warning and subsequent calls will result in a technical foul on the offending player.
  • In Unified Sports® games, partners must not score more than 75 percent of the total points and the athletes must not score more than 75 percent of the team’s total points.
  • Unified Sports® games will consist of four periods, each eight minutes long (except when a classification team identifies a lower level division of Unified Sports® that needs to play only six minutes).

Dominant play is defined as: an action or play by a player that does not allow another teammate to play their position. All players shall be allowed meaningful involvement and play.

Additional information on Unified Sports® can be found in the Unified Sports (Section K) section.

Unified Sports® Basketball Scoring Aid

Score 25% 75% Score 25% 75%
4 1.0 3.0 52 13.0 39.0
5 1.3 3.8 53 13.3 39.8
6 1.5 4.5 54 13.5 40.5
7 1.8 5.3 55 13.8 41.3
8 2.0 6.0 56 14.0 42.0
9 2.3 6.8 57 14.3 42.8
10 2.5 7.5 58 14.5 43.5
11 2.8 8.3 59 14.8 44.3
12 3.0 9.0 60 15.0 45.0
13 3.3 9.8 61 15.3 45.8
14 3.5 10.5 62 15.5 46.5
15 3.8 11.3 63 15.8 47.3
16 4.0 12.0 64 16.0 48.0
17 4.3 12.8 65 16.3 48.8
18 4.5 13.5 66 16.5 49.5
19 4.8 14.3 67 16.8 50.3
20 5.0 15.0 68 17.0 51.0
21 5.3 15.8 69 17.3 51.8
22 5.5 16.5 70 17.5 52.5
23 5.8 17.3 71 17.8 53.3
24 6.0 18.0 72 18.0 54.0
25 6.3 18.8 73 18.3 54.8
26 6.5 19.5 74 18.5 55.5
27 6.8 20.3 75 18.8 56.3
28 7.0 21.0 76 20.0 57.0
29 7.3 21.8 77 21.3 57.8
30 7.5 22.5 78 21.5 58.5
31 7.8 23.3 79 21.8 59.3
32 8.0 24.0 80 22.0 60.0
33 8.3 24.8 81 22.3 60.8
34 8.5 25.5 82 22.5 61.5
35 8.8 26.3 83 22.8 62.3
36 9.0 27.0 84 23.0 63.0
37 9.3 27.8 85 23.3 63.8
38 9.5 28.5 86 23.5 64.5
39 9.8 29.3 87 23.8 65.3
40 10.0 30.0 88 24.0 66.0
41 10.3 24.8 89 24.3 66.8
42 10.5 25.5 90 24.5 67.5
43 10.8 26.3 91 24.8 68.3
44 11.0 27.0 92 25.0 69.0
45 11.3 27.8 93 25.3 69.8
46 11.5 28.5 94 25.5 70.5
47 11.8 29.3 95 25.8 71.3
48 12.0 30.0 96 26.0 72.0
49 12.3 30.8 97 26.3 72.8
50 12.5 31.5 98 26.5 73.5
51 12.8 32.3 99 26.8 74.3

Cycling

Events Offered

The following events are sanctioned by Special Olympics Texas and are to be offered at all local, area and chapter competitions. The actual events scheduled and conducted at local, area and chapter competitions will be determined by a minimum number of entries in each event.

  • 500 meter and modified time trials
  • 1 kilometer and modified time trials
  • 5 kilometer and modified time trials
  • 10 kilometer (time trials and/or road race)
  • 15 kilometer (road race)
  • 25 kilometer (road race)
  • Level 1 – choice of bicycle or modified bicycle shall be left to the discretion of the event director.
  • Level 2 – racing/touring model bike (lightweight, multi-speed)
  • Unified Sports® - 5 kilometer and 10 kilometer tandem time trial
  • Level 3 – racing touring model bike (lightweight, multi-speed)

General Information

  • The Official Special Olympics Sports Rules shall govern all Special Olympics cycling competitions. As an international sports program, Special Olympics created these rules based upon United States Cycling Federation (USCF) rules for cycling. United States Cycling Federation (USCF) rules shall be employed except when they are in conflict with the Official Special Olympics Sports Rules. In such cases, the official Special Olympics Sports Rules shall apply.
  • Individual time trial qualifying times are required for all events.
  • Modified bicycles (three-wheel) should only participate in the 500 meter and the 1 kilometer and 5 kilometer time trials.
  • A 35-minute or faster qualifying time has been established for 5 kilometer modified time trial.
  • Two wheel and three wheel bikes should be run separately during all time trials.
  • An athlete may enter a maximum of two events.
  • The following modifications will be in effect for Special Olympics Texas competition:
    • All races will be on a totally closed course.
    • Modified bikes are acceptable.
    • Approved helmets are required during training and competition.
    • All bikes must be inspected prior to training and competition.
    • A standby repair truck should be available.
    • An ambulance must be on the race route at all times during competition.
    • In the event of a mechanical failure, cyclists are permitted to change bikes during a race.
  • All UCI rules and regulations must be adhered to.
  • Time trials and competitions shall be divided into competition divisions based upon age, sex and ability.
  • At the local level, time trials should be used for divisioning.
  • At the area and chapter competitions, official times at the most recent competition will be used for divisioning.
  • All time trials will be done on a designated course.
  • Time trials will be run in thirty second intervals.

Certified Rabbit Percentages

The Chapter Sports Management Team has approved the following rule revision for cycling competition.

Rabbit Rule will be in place for cycling with two different percentages depending on the type of competition taking place:

  1. A 35 percent rabbit percentage will be applied when no preliminaries are conducted at a competition.
  2. OR
  3. A 20 percent rabbit percentage will be applied when preliminaries AND finals are conducted at a competition.

Equestrian

Events Offered

Equestrian athletes can enter no more than five events. The following events are sanctioned by Special Olympics Texas and are to be offered at all local, area and chapter competitions. The actual events scheduled and conducted at local, area and chapter competitions will be determined by a minimum number of entries in each event and adequate accommodations. C-SP is lowest ability level. A is highest. All entry forms must include class/division level.

2017 Equestrian Competition Patterns

Equestrian Sports

C-SP

C-S

C-I

B-SP

B-S

B-IP

B-I

AP

A

Drill Teams 2 or 4 / Unified Sports®

English Equitation

Western Equitation

Working Trails

Team Relays / Unified Sports® Relay

       

Dressage

   

   

Showmanship

 

Western Riding

   

   

Pole Bending

         

Barrel Racing

         

Figure 8 Stake Race

         

Prix Caprilli

             

Brief Description of SOTX Levels:

  • Level CSP- supported riders (these riders are typically very physically involved, requiring 2 Sidewalkers for physical support and a Horse Handler to guide the horse, may or may not be able to hold reins, these riders will most likely have to work on their ‘midline’ position).
  • Level CS- supported riders (working on basic horsemanship, stop, start, steer, but not ready to be in the arena independently without some support/helper nearby, may or may not have Sidewalkers, but will have a Horse Handler with them. The lead rope may be tied up or unclipped with helpers close enough to assist if needed)
  • Level CI- independent riders (these riders are able to follow all verbal/signal directions from the judge independently, without the need for assistance at the walk. These riders should be able to bring the horse back to the walk if the horse gets quick or beings to trot/jog)
  • Level BSP- supported riders will typically have a physical disability prohibiting them from posting the trot or sitting the jog. (This is not due to coordination difficulty, but a true physical involvement).
  • Level BS- supported riders, can physically perform any class requirements (riders are focusing on trotting/jogging skills, but not ready to trot/jog without assistance in the arena, they may or may not have Sidewalkers but will have a Horse Handler with them; the lead rope may be tied up or unclipped with the Horse Handler close enough to assist if needed).
  • Level BI- independent riders, can perform any class requirements (these riders are able to follow all verbal/signal directions from the judge independently, without the need for assistance at the walk and trot/jog. Each rider should have a Horse Handler present who may be asked to stand in the center of the arena or in corners at the judge’s discretion).
  • Level A- Walk, Trot/Jog, Canter/Lope. Independent only. Rider is expected to compete with no modifications to NGB rules. Each rider should have a Horse Handler present who may be asked to stand in the center of the arena or in corners at the judge’s discretion).

General Information

All equestrian coaches must obtain a copy of the Official Special Olympics Sports Rules for complete details regarding classes, competition and safety requirements. Rules can also be obtained from the American Horse Shows Association (AHSA) and the American Quarter Horse Association (AQHA).

Equestrian Rule Changes/Clarifications

The following are all SOTX approved modifications of the Official Special Olympics Sports Rules.

  • Section A - Gymkhana, 5.a.7 & 8 Team Relays
    • If horse handlers are being used, they must walk behind the horse’s nose. If a horse handler passes the horse’s nose at any time then a 30 second penalty will be added to that team's time.
  • Section C - Attire, 2.b1.English Tack
    • Quick out stirrups are now accepted along with the previously accepted stirrups: peacock safety stirrups, S-shaped stirrups, Devonshire boots or regular irons if riders are in hard-sole boots with heels.
  • Section D - Tack, 1.c. Prohibited Equipment
    • Hackamores and side pull bridles are allowed in dressage, English equitation and trails, stock seat equitation, western riding, and western working trail.
  • Section D - Tack, 1.b. General Equipment
    • Halters are not required under bridles in supported classes. In all supported classes, lead lines may not be attached to the bit, but may be attached to the cavesson, noseband, sidepull or halter under the bridle.
  • Section D - Tack, 1.d. Adaptive Equipment
    • Break away rubber bands no larger than 3/8 inch thickness may be worn by riders to help them keep their feet in the stirrup (one per foot).
  • Section F - Patterns and Test
    • Working Trail – Two trail patterns per level are being devised and will be mailed to equestrian coaches, competition directors, and area directors. One test pattern will fit a large pen and the other a small pen. One of the tests from each level will be used at state Games.
    • Area directors and competition directors are not required to use one of these patterns at area or regional competitions. They have the option to use their own patterns or one of these patterns for their competition.
  • Section G - Side Pass 5.b.3.g.iii. Facilities and Elements Working Trail
    • Side pass maneuver is removed as an option for working trail.
  • The Sports Management Team has approved to reinstate Showmanship at Halter for levels C-S and B-S with the following restrictions:
    1. All athletes must be able to walk on their own (without canes, crutches, wheelchairs or walkers).
    2. All athletes will be accompanied by a “spotter” who may assist with control of the horse and may walk on the off side with or without a second lead rope attached.
    3. Both C-S and B-S patterns will be walk only.

SOTX added an event for Western riders. The CI Western Riding pattern will be a B-level pattern, but walk only. Riders must use a Western saddle. With this addition, English and Western riders will have the same number of events available to them.

The Team Relay event will be offered for supported riders only: levels CSP, CS, CI, BSP, BS and Unified Supported. The Relay will be a weaving pattern of 3 cones, poles or barrels, each 25 feet apart, down and back. A Team Relay must have 2-4 riders from the same team. The Team Relay may consist of CSP-CS or BSP-BS, mixing of C and B level is not allowed. CI's must compete as a CI team. Limiting the event to supported riders and making it a weaving pattern event will create an event that is similar and progressive to the speed events (barrels, poles and figure 8) in which the BI and A level riders currently have the opportunity to compete.

Riders may share horses, but horses are limited to working six classes per day. Just as the welfare of the athletes is a top priority, so should be the care of the partner horse. This limit will ensure the horses receive proper rest and are not overused.

Drill Team has a maximum time limit  of 5 minutes to complete their routine. Any team that exceeds this 5-minute maximum time allowance will be disqualified from this event.

Equipment General Guidelines

  • Competitors are encouraged to wear the correct riding apparel. However, the attire should be appropriate for the class entered. For example, jeans are appropriate for western tack style classes and conservatively-colored long pants with hard-soled shoes or boots with a heel are appropriate for English tack style classes.
  • Riders who must wear other footwear as the result of a physical disability must use a safety stirrup.
  • All riders must wear protective, SEI-ASTM-approved helmets with full harness. The chin strap must be appropriately fastened at all times when rider is mounted; this includes coaches and schoolers/trainers. Helmets must be replaced if ever involved in a fall and most manufacturers suggest that helmets more then five years should be replaced.
  • Riders may use adaptive equipment without penalty, but must in no way be attached to the horse or saddle. Examples are thin rubberbands on feet, laces on leathers to girth and "lil dude" stirrups.
  • Coaches are encouraged to use the Sports Skills Assessment Form found in their sports skill guide.
  • Rider profiles are no longer required for Summer Games.

Saddlery and Equipment

  • Saddles must fit horse and rider.
  • Bridles must be appropriate to the class entered.
  • Specially adapted saddles must be approved by the event director prior to any competition.
  • In jumping classes, an English saddle must be used.

Equestrian Risks

Equestrian sports are becoming more and more popular at Special Olympics, but they bring with them multiple insurance risks. It is not possible for Special Olympics to assume all of the insurance risks associated with equestrian sports, because many of those risks have to be managed by specialty insurance coverage bought by the owners, stables or grounds. Therefore, it is important when working with equestrian sports to pay attention to these insurance requirements:

  • Each horse must have a current (less than one year old) Negative Coggins Form from the veterinarian. Each rider or team must provide a copy of the form for each horse used/brought to the venue.
  • Each team must have a Release of Liability Form on file for each rider and a copy of that form must be brought to each competition/venue.
  • Make sure that the owner of the horse has insurance for injury to the horse as well as animal mortality coverage. Special Olympics’ general liability insurance policy is designed to respond if, for example, a third party is hurt at an equestrian event. But it would not respond to a claim for injury to the horse, unless negligence on the part of SOI was proven. This is why it is important to make sure that direct, or first party coverage for the horse is in place.
  • Make sure that the owner of the stables, facilities or field in which the event is taking place is properly insured. This is an unusual exposure for SOI because it is possible that the facilities could cause damage to the horse, or vice versa. Again, these could result in damage claims that may not have been directly caused by SOI at all, but for which SOI could be held responsible if there is not adequate specialty insurance available.

In summary, damage done to a horse or grounds should be insured by the appropriate owners. Otherwise, SOI can too easily face a lawsuit alleging that it must be responsible for the valuable property of others.

Owners of horses cannot be added as an additional insured under the Special Olympics’ general liability policy.

Gymnastics

Events Offered

The following events are sanctioned by Special Olympics Texas and are to be offered at all local, area and chapter competitions. The actual events scheduled and conducted at local, area and chapter competitions will be determined by a minimum number of entries in each event. The following events may be offered in artistic and rhythmic gymnastics competition.

Artistic

New routines were established in 2004. Contact your area office for more information to ensure that you have the most updated gymnastics information.

Mixed Gender Events (Level A Only)

  1. Vaulting
  2. Wide Beam
  3. Floor Exercise
  4. Tumbling
  5. Single Bar
  6. All-round (combination of all five event scores)

Men’s Events (Levels 1, 2 and 3)

  1. Floor Exercise
  2. Pommel Horse
  3. Rings
  4. Vaulting
  5. Parallel Bars
  6. Horizontal Bar
  7. All-round (combination of all six event scores)

Women’s Events (Levels 1, 2 and 3)

  1. Vaulting
  2. Uneven Bars
  3. Balance Beam
  4. Floor Exercise
  5. All-round (combination of all four event scores)

Rhythmic

  1. Rules and routines used at all levels of SOTX Rhythmic Gymnastics events will be the SOI Rules dated 2016-2023.
  2. Rhythmic Ball, Hoop, Ribbon, Rope, and Floor
  3. Level A, B, 1, 2 and 3 Optional routines

Rhythmic Group Routines

  1. Hoop - Level 1
  2. Ball - Level 2
  3. Ribbons - Level 3

General Information

  • All gymnastics coaches must obtain a copy of the Official Special Olympics Sports Rules for complete details regarding classes, competition and safety requirements. Rules can also be obtained from the Federation Internationale de Gymnastics (FIG).
  • SOTX events will utilize the 2016-2023 SOI Rythmic Gymnastics rules.

Attire:

  • Male gymnasts shall wear tank tops (leotards) and long white gymnastic pants, or T-shirts that are tucked in and gymnastics shorts. For either set of attire, the gymnast may compete in gymnastic slippers or bare feet.
  • Female gymnasts shall wear a leotard, have bare legs, and have bare feet, white peds or gymnastic slippers. Flesh colored tights with bare feet are permitted, but not recommended.
  • Qualifying scores from area competition will be used to determine ability grouping, within age groups at Summer Games. Entry forms must include scores and/or levels.
  • The official entry form appears on pages P-20 to P-21.

Levels:

  • Age group divisions will be followed.
  • There are five levels of competition:
    • Level A – compulsory (male and female)
    • Level B (beginner) – compulsory (male and female)
    • Level 1 (beginner) – compulsory (female)
    • Level 2 (intermediate) – compulsory (female)
    • Level 3 (advanced) – compulsory (female)
  • Coaches will determine in which level of competition to place their athletes. The athletes must be able to safely perform all of the skills in that level.
  • In all-round competition, athletes must compete at the same level in all events.
  • In artistic gymnastics events at the chapter level, a gymnast specializing in particular events may compete on two different levels, with a one level difference between them.
    In rhythmic events, athletes must compete in all events at the same level.

Required Routine Specifications:

  • Compulsory routines will be followed in all levels.
  • Female gymnasts may specialize by competing in one or more events, up to a maximum of five events. Male gymnasts may specialize by competing in one or more events, up to a maximum of seven events.
  • Gymnasts competing for all-round awards will compete in all events offered at their competition level.
  • Female gymnasts that compete in artistic gymnastics may not compete in rhythmic gymnastics.

Soccer

In 2017, team soccer events (Traditional and Unified) at the Chapter Games level will be offered as an indoor soccer event only. This will be the second year that SOTX will be offering indoor soccer at Summer Games, and this is a trial to see if indoor soccer should become the permanent and only soccer option offered at the Chapter level. The Chapter SMT will reevaluate for the 2018 season after collecting survey results and feedback following the 2017 event.

Events Offered

The following events are sanctioned by Special Olympics Texas and are to be offered at all local, area and chapter competitions. The actual events scheduled and conducted at local, area and chapter competitions will be determined by a minimum number of entries in each event.

An athlete may participate in one of the following events:

  • 11-a-side team competition and Unified Sports® team
  • 5-a-side (modified) team competition and Unified Sports® team
  • Individual skills - dribble, shoot, control and pass

General Information

  • All soccer coaches must obtain a copy of the Official Special Olympics Sports Rules for complete details regarding classes, competition and safety requirements. Rules can also be obtained from the Federation Internationale de Football Association (FIFA).
  • In general, Special Olympics soccer competition is conducted according to the governing body rules. Modified (5-a-side) soccer has been endorsed by Special Olympics Texas as a means of stimulating growth in the sport of soccer.

Entries

  • The Soccer Team Evaluation Questionnaire Form (TEQ) must be submitted with athlete entries prior to every area, regional, and chapter competition.
  • The roster maximum for 11-a-side is 20.
  • The roster maximum for 5-a-side is 10.

Attire

  • Thermal shorts must be the same as the predominant color of shorts.
  • Soccer footwear shall consist of turf shoes, soccer cleats with rubber cleats or tennis shoes. Players may not wear anything that may be dangerous or cause injury to another player.
  • Due to safety risks, assisted devices such as canes, walkers, wheelchairs and service dogs are prohibited from use in team sports. Athletes who require assisted devices may compete in Individual Skills contests if they meet the performance requirements.

Game

  • Players with a bleeding wound must leave the field. They may not return until the bleeding is stopped.
  • The team winning the coin toss chooses ends. The other team kicks off.
  • A goal may be scored from kickoff or a goal kick directly.
  • The ball is in play when it is kicked and moves forward on kickoffs; also, when it is kicked and moves on free kicks.
  • If a keeper handles a ball after receiving it on a kick-in or throw-in from his team, an indirect free kick will be awarded at that spot. Please note that the keeper may not control the kick-in or throw-in with his/her feet, then pick it up.
  • Failing to respect the required distance on restarts is a cautionable offense.
  • Delaying the restart is a cautionable offense. This includes such actions as kicking the ball away and excessive celebration.
  • Offensive, insulting and abusive language replaces foul and abusive language. This may lead to ejection from the game.
  • The keeper may now move on his line at the taking of penalty kicks.
  • In 5-a-side play, throws-ins are allowed as an alternative option to kick-ins when the ball crosses the sideline.
  • A keeper may not hold the ball more than five to six seconds without being subject to penalties for time wasting.
  • On an indirect free kick, the ball only needs to move before the second touch; it does not need to roll full circumference.
  • The referee must be told if the goalie is substituted/changed.
  • Athletes and Unified Partners younger than 11 years old shall not engage in heading, either in practices or in games.

Soccer Overtime

Effective immediately, Special Olympics Texas will utilize overtime (as written in the Official Special Olympics Sports Rules) for all area and chapter level soccer competitions; therefore, no soccer game shall end in a tie.

Unified Sports® Soccer

  • Teams follow FIFA and Special Olympics rules.
  • Partners, people without intellectual disabilities, must be identified on lineups and lineups must be exchanged between coaches.
  • Teams must have three athletes and two partners on the field at all times. If the ratio is not maintained at anytime, the team not in compliance must forfeit.
  • A non-playing, dual-certified bench coach must be designated at the beginning of the match. The coach may not be listed as a player for that game or enter the game as a player.
  • Dominant play will be a judgment call determined by the officials on the field. Penalty will be a verbal warning and subsequent calls will result in a yellow card on the offending player.

Dominant play is defined as: an action or play by a player that does not allow another teammate to play their position. All players shall be allowed meaningful involvement and play.

Additional information on Unified Sports® can be found in the Unified Sports section.

Tennis

General Information

The Official Special Olympics Sports Rules and the United States Tennis Association (USTA) rules shall govern all Special Olympics tennis competitions. USTA rules shall be employed except when they are in conflict with the Official Special Olympics Sports Rules. In such cases, the Official Special Olympics Summer Sports Rules shall apply.

Divisions Offered

The following events are sanctioned by Special Olympics Texas and are to be offered at all levels. The actual events scheduled and conducted at local, area and chapter competitions will be determined by a minimum number of entries in each event.

Individual Skills

Level 1

  • One skill level with red ball
  • Court size: 42' x 27'

Match Play (men and women for each division)

Level 2

  • Red Ball
    • Singles
    • Doubles
    • Unified Sports®
    • Court Size: 42' x 27' (Singles)
    • Court Size: 42' x 27' (Doubles)

Level 3

  • Orange Ball
    • Singles
    • Doubles
    • Unified Sports®
    • Court Size: 78' x 27' (Singles)
    • Court Size: 78' x 27' (Doubles)

Level 4

  • Green Ball
    • Singles
    • Doubles
    • Unified Sports®
    • Court Size: 78' x 27' (Singles)
    • Court Size: 78' x 36' (Doubles)

Level 5

  • Yellow Ball
    • Singles
    • Doubles
    • Unified Sports®
    • Court Size: 78' x 27' (Singles)
    • Court Size: 78' x 36' (Doubles)

Event entry limits: A participant may enter Individual Skills OR one singles and/or one doubles event. Clarification: A participant may NOT enter both doubles and Unified Sports® doubles.

Format

Individual Skills for Short Court with Red Ball

Note: Only the feeder can call a misfeed. This call must be made prior to the athlete's attempt to hit the ball.

Recommend two practice balls prior to scoring the athlete.

EXPLANATION OF EACH SKILL STATION

SKILL #1 - Forehand Volley: Athlete stands 3-4 feet from the net in the middle of the court.The feeder stands across the net and underhand tosses to the athlete’s forehand side. The athlete scores 5 points for hitting the ball over the net and into either service box. Each athlete is given five attempts

SKILL #2 Backhand Volley: Same as forehand volley except feeder underhand tosses five balls to the athlete’s backhand side.

NOTE: Keep athlete on court to do both forehand and backhand volley before changing athletes

SKILL #3 Forehand Groundstroke: Athlete stands on or behind the service line in the middle of the court. The feeder stands where most comfortable for successful feeds and underhand tosses the ball so it bounces once before reaching the athlete’s forehand side. The athlete scores 5 points for hitting the ball over the net and into either service box. Each athlete is given five attempts.

SKILL #4 Backhand Groundstroke: Same as forehand groundstroke except feeder feeds five balls to the athlete’s backhand side.

NOTE: Keep athlete on court to do both forehand and backhand groundstroke before changing athletes

SKILL #5 Alternating Groundstrokes with Movement: Athlete stands on or behind the service line in the middle of the court. The feeder stands where most comfortable for successful feeds and underhand tosses alternating to the athlete’s forehand and backhand. Each feed should land at a point which is halfway between the center service mark and the singles sideline to make the athlete move at least one step. The athlete must be allowed to return to the center mark before feeding the next ball. The athlete scores 5 points for hitting the ball over the net into either service box. Each athlete is given ten attempts.

SKILL #6 Serve-Deuce: The athlete is positioned behind the service line and hits a serve from the right court to the deuce service box. A ball landing in the correct service box will count 10 points. Each athlete is given five attempts.

Legal serve: Athlete may hit the ball overhanded or underhanded (preferably without a bounce).

SKILL #7 Serve-Ad: Same as deuce but from the left court to the ad service box.

NOTE: Have 2 athletes serving at the same time in the appropriate box and than changing sides to serve to the other box

Final Score - Scoring is cumulative.This means that a player’s final score is determined by adding together the scores achieved in each of the seven events which comprise the Individual Skills Contest.

Match Play

  • A match will consist of one five game No-Ad set.
  • A set is won by a player or the team who is the first to win a total of five games. If the score is 4-4, then the winner of the ninth game wins the match.
  • The No-Ad scoring system will be used for all match-play. The No-Ad procedure is simply what the name implies: the first player to win four points wins the game; the seventh point of a game becoming a game point for each player. The receiver has the choice of advantage court or deuce court to which the service is to be delivered on the seventh point.
  • In a Mixed Doubles match, the seventh point will be served gender to gender.
  • In a Unified Sports® doubles match, athlete will serve to athlete and Unified partner will serve to Unified partner.
  • The score calling is by simple numbers
    (e.g., “zero, one, two, three, game”).

Round Robin Draw

Determining the order of finish.

  1. The player who wins the most matches is the winner.
  2. If there is a two-way tie, the player who wins head-to-head is the winner.
  3. If there is a three-way tie, the player with the most games won is the winner.
  4. If there is still a tie on games won and head-to-head cannot be used to break the games won tie, the referee (tournament official in charge) will award accordingly.

Tennis Doubles

  • If there are different skill levels from a doubles team, that team must play doubles in the higher skilled division. For example, if player "A" plays singles in the green ball division and player "B" plays singles in the yellow ball division, then they must play doubles in the yellow ball division (the higher division between the two players).
  • Traditional tennis doubles teams may now consist of one male and one female at area and chapter competitions. Since there is not a "mixed doubles" division recognized by Special Olympics, these teams will be placed in the male division that best fits their age and ability levels.

Unified Doubles

  • Unified partners, as well as athletes, are to complete the Tennis Rating Form.
  • Unified partners, as well as athletes, are to be classified.
  • Unified partners' goal is to keep a rally during a point and to not dominate the match. This event is for the athletes.

Modifications of Play

Athletes will have the option of hitting an overhand or underhand serve.

Leveling/Divisioning

The Tennis Rating Form should be used to determine ability levels (divisions) for singles and doubles participants and also for Unified Sports® partners.

Tennis Suggested Competition Levels

COMPETITION LEVELS

The levels below are suggested as a guide for use in competition, to assist the athletes in their transition from ISC to traditional match play.

The choice of level offered in a competition will depend on the ability levels of athletes entering.

Consideration must also be given to whether the athlete’s training has included these balls and court sizes.

LEVEL 1 (ISC)

Court Dimensions: 42' x 27'

Ball: ITF approved Red Felt Ball

Level 1 is suggested for athletes rated between 1.0 & 1.9.

It is intended to be an introduction to short court matchplay in Level 2.

ISC scoring for level 1 will consist of 5 points for each volley and groundstroke landing within the service boxes and 10 points for each correct serve.

Full court ISC may still be conducted, if more suitable to the ability level of the athletes.

Court Positioning F: Feeder for groundstrokes & volleys AG: Athlete for groundstrokes & serves AV: Athlete for volleys.

LEVEL 2 – Short Court Match play

Court Dimensions: 42' x 27'

Ball: ITF approved Red Felt Ball

Level 2 is suggested for athletes rated between 2.0 & 2.9.

LEVEL 3 – Intermediate Court Match play

Court Dimensions:60' x 27'

Ball: ITF approved Orange Ball

Level 3 is suggested for athletes rated between 3.0 & 3.9.

LEVELS 4 & 5 – Traditional Court Match play

Court Dimensions:

  • 78' x 27' for singles
  • 78' x 36' for doubles

Ball:
ITF approved green ball(level 4)
ITF approved Yellow Ball (level 5)


Level 4 is suggested for athletes rated between 4.0 & 4.9

Level 5 is suggested for athletes rated between 5.0 & 8.0.

*Tennis balls shown are examples only and are typical of ITF approved tennis balls


Section Q:
Fall Classic

The 17th annual Fall Classic will be held in Bryan-College Station on October 12-14, 2017.

Five sports are featured at this year’s Fall Classic. In addition, special events such as Opening Ceremonies, Athlete Village, Victory Dance, Closing Ceremonies and various clinics and demonstrations will round out the experience for athletes, coaches and families in attendance.

Athletes may participate in only one sport at Fall Classic, even if competitions are on separate weekends.

This year's sports include: aquatics, bocce, softball, and triathlon.

Golf will be held as a stand alone event in 2017 due to course availability. Golf will be held on October 19 - 21, 2017.

Separate stand-alone sports include: Flag Football, Sailing and Kayaking. Flag Football will be held on December 1 - 2, 2017.

Entry fees will be $30 for each competing athlete and Unified Sports® partner.

Scratches during registration or during games will result in a $15.00 administration fee per athlete and Unified Partner.

Check your area office for the entry deadline. No late entries accepted.

Resource Information

To request specific information on individual sports and competitions, consult the Official Special Olympics Sports Rules, which may be obtained through the area office. Additional information may be obtained from the sport director.

Aquatics (Swimming)

Bob Lang
4149 Lomita Lane
Dallas, TX 75220

dogmatic.lang@gmail.com

214.755.7981

Bocce

Cathy Schreiber
7622 Alcomita Drive
Houston, TX 77083

cathy.schreiber@aliefisd.net

cschre3616@cs.com

281.827.9494 Cell

Flag Football

Chris Gormley
Department of Recreational Sports
800 W. Campbell Road, AB10
Richardson, TX 75080

chris.gormley@utdallas.edu

972.883.7457

Golf

Dennis Wyatt
5501 Pebble Court
McKinney, TX 75070

dwyatt@mckinneyisd.net

Kayaking

Bruce Litton
17135 Ligustrum Trail
Tomball, TX 77377

b.litton@eartthlink.net

832.431.6824

Sailing

Steve Comen
3509 Leighton Ridge Drive
Plano, Texas 75025

steve.comen@gmail.com

214.417.3864

Softball

Al Macias
4300 Newcastle Court
Bryan, TX 77802

strike1@suddenlink.net

979.412.5771

Triathlon

TBD

2017 Chapter Games Sport Maximums

Aquatics - 500 Participants
The aquatics competition at Chapter Games will have a maximum quota of 500 entrants. Quota will be distributed to each area for dispersal before entry deadlines. Quota will be based an area's net participation in aquatics against the statewide total of area level net participants in aquatics.

Advancement to Chapter Fall Classic

For all team competitions in which there are individual skills, SOTX will require a minimum of 8 participants to offer the skills events at Chapter Games. This will be determined at the time entries are due to the Chapter office.

Aquatics (Swimming)

Events Offered

The following aquatics (swimming) events are sanctioned by Special Olympics Texas and may be offered at local, area and chapter competitions. The actual events scheduled and conducted at local, area and/or chapter competitions will be determined by a minimum number of entries in each event.

  • Diving Events:
    • 1m Springboard Dive
  • Individual Events:
    • Freestyle – 25, 50, 100, 200 and 400m
    • Backstroke – 25, 50, 100 and 200m
    • Breaststroke – 25, 50 and 100m
    • Butterfly – 25, 50 and 100m
    • Individual Medley – 100m
  • Relay Events and Unified Sports® Relays
    • Freestyle Relay – 4 x 25m, 4 x 50m
    • Medley Relay – 4 x 25m, 4 x 50m
  • Individual Skills
    • 15m Walk (if facility is able to accommodate this event)
    • 15m Unassisted Swim
    • 15m Flotation Race
    • 10m Assisted Swim
    • 25m Flotation Race

The Official Special Olympics Sports Rules shall govern all Special Olympics aquatics (swimming) competitions. As an international sports program, Special Olympics has created these rules based upon Federation Internationale de Natation Amateur (FINA) and USA Swimming, Inc. (USAS) rules for aquatics. FINA and USAS rules shall be employed except when they are in conflict with the Official Special Olympics Sports Rules. In such cases, the Official Special Olympics Sports Rules shall apply.

General Information

  • An emergency action plan shall be in place prior to any Special Olympics participant entering the water for any reason – training, competition or recreation.
  • In general, Special Olympics aquatics follows the rules as set forth by the National Governing Body. However, the modified individual skills events are offered as a developmental level or bridge to the “regular” swim events.
  • In order for diving to qualify as a chapter event a minimum of twelve athletes must register for the event.

Entries

  • An athlete may enter no more than three individual events, one relay event and a diving event. Athletes must compete in regular events or individual skills events. No crossover is allowed.
  • The Sports Management Team has approved the utilization of maximum qualifying times of 3:30.00 (3 minutes, 30 seconds) for all 100 meter events and 7:00.00 (seven minutes) for all 200 meter events.
  • Athletes who exceed these maximum times during competition will be disqualified and receive a participation ribbon.
  • As a reminder, flotation devices are not worn in the 15 meter unassisted swim.
  • To correctly convert a time from yards to meters, multiply the yards time by 1.0936 (not .91). Example: 25 yard time of 00:30:72 = 25 meter time of 00:33:60 (30.72 x 1.0936). To convert a time from meters to yards, multiply the meter time by .91. Example: 25 meter time of 00:36:91 = 25 yard time of 00:33:59 (36.91 x .91). If you have a time in yards that has minutes in it, you have to change the minutes to seconds to be able to use a calculator to multiply the time. If the time was 04:22:89 (4 minutes, 22 seconds, 89 hundredths) you multiply the 4 minutes by 60 to get 240 seconds. 240 seconds + 22.89 = 262.89 seconds. Now you can use a calculator to multiply 262.89 x 1.0936 = 287.50 seconds or 04:27:50 (4 minutes, 27 seconds, 50 hundredths).

Rules Highlights

  • In all Special Olympics competitions, each swimmer will be allowed one false start. Upon committing a second false start, that swimmer will be disqualified. In all cases where a false start occurs, the race will be recalled. Any swimmer with two false starts will not be permitted to swim.
  • Currently USA Swimming states that in breaststroke the feet must be turned outwards during the propulsive part of the kick. A scissors, flutter or downward dolphin kick is not permitted. Breaking the surface of the water with the feet is allowed unless followed by a downward dolphin kick.
    SOTX Modification: If is not possible for some athletes to turn the feet outward, therefore, feet turning outwards during the propulsive part of the stroke is not a requirement. However, a scissors, flutter, or downward dolphin kick is not permitted.
  • The rabbit percentages are now 20 percent for all aquatics events at chapter competitions.
  • Athletes have the option of using starting blocks, deck, or they may start in the water for the beginning of each race.
  • Unified Sports® partners will be allowed to participate in up to two Unified Sports® relays in aquatics competition.
  • The utilization of a prosthetic swimming device in aquatics for athletes who already wear and use a prosthetic device in daily living is allowed.
  • Athletes are not allowed to wear a wetsuit during competition.

Developmental Events

  • Athletes are allowed the option of wearing a proper flotation device in walk events. It was determined that this did not create a competitive advantage and in some cases is a prudent safety measure. Athletes will be heated and divisioned according to ability, age, and gender (like all SOTX events) and shall not be heated separately within the walk event as “flotation” and “non-flotation” – they are all considered “walk” athletes in this event.
  • For flotation races, each athlete is responsible for his/her own flotation device. The device must be of the body wrap around type such that if the athlete was not able to hold on to the device, the device would still support the athlete with the face out of the water. (Flotation devices such as kickboards, inner tubes, or floats that wrap around the arms are not acceptable for use at any time.) SMT determined that ski vests, ski belts and other flotation devices are acceptable if they:
    1. meet the above criteria – wrap around the body and keep the face above water when not holding onto it (when conscious); and
    2. are originally designed by the manufacturer to be worn as a flotation device. (An example of an unacceptable “modification” would be: a water noodle modified to be worn around the waist. This would be an unacceptable flotation device because it was not originally designed by the manufacturer for this purpose.)
  • Due to safety risks, athletes must start in the water for the Individual Skills events, including 25m flotation.

Aquatics (Swimming) Minimum Safety Standards

  • The minimum number of lifeguards at recreational swimming must be one lifeguard for every 25 participants.
  • The volunteer to athlete ratio must be at least 1 to 10, but more volunteers are required for those with physical disabilities.
  • Medical information, which must be on hand, should be discussed with the lifeguard on duty in advance of any activity.
  • If no relief lifeguard is available, the pool must be emptied, even for short durations, when a lifeguard must leave the poolside.
  • A physical examination must be made of the pool area to identify potential hazards. The deck should be clear of obstructions.
  • A copy of the pool’s current rules must be submitted for review prior to entering the pool.
  • Pool depth must be marked and easily visible.
  • The pool depth must be a minimum of five feet for diving racing starts.
  • The Sports Management Team highly recommends coaches be aware of the depth of the pool for diving racing starts and take measures to avoid injuries.
  • Safety lines must be in place to divide shallow and deep water areas.
  • It is important to know the Ph level and the temperature of the water before entering the pool.
  • A first aid kit must be available containing all the appropriate supplies.
  • All electrical outlets and appliances must be properly maintained and protected.
  • There must be a telephone available on site with emergency numbers posted next to it.
  • Indoor and outdoor exits must be clearly marked.

Special Olympics Diving Rules – One meter springboard

  1. Special Olympics diving events will be conducted following the FINA rules of seniorcompetition with the following exceptions:
    1. Divers may choose any of the dives on the FINA degree of difficulty table with the addition of: dive number 100 (forward jump) in the A (straight), B (pike) or C (tuck) position and dive number 200 (back jump in the A, B or C position). Dive numbers 100 and 200 will have a degree of difficulty of 1.0 regardless of position.
    2. Dives may be performed standing or with an approach.
    3. Each diver will compete at one of four skill levels (Level 1, 2, 3 or 4) according to his/her ability.
  2. The following are the recommended elements of each Special Olympics level:
    1. Level 1
      • The diver must be capable of performing two dives.
      • One dive must be a forward dive (number 101) in any position; the second dive shall be any other dive with a different FINA designated number.
      • A change in position shall not constitute a different dive.
    2. Level 2
      • The diver must be capable of performing three dives.
      • One dive must be a forward dive (number 101) in any position; the other two dives shall be selected from any two of the five FINA dive groups (they must be from different groups, but one of them may come from the front group).
      • Each dive shall have a different FINA designated dive number.
      • A change in position does not constitute a different dive.
    3. Level 3
      • The diver must be capable of performing four dives.
      • One dive must be a forward dive (number 101) in any position; the other three dives shall be selected from any three of the five FINA dive groups (they must be from different groups, but one of them may come from the front group).
      • Each dive shall have a different FINA designated dive number.
      • A change in position does not constitute a different dive.
    4. Level 4
      • The diver must be capable of performing five dives.
      • One must be a forward dive (number 101) in any position; the other four dives shall be selected from any four of the five FINA dive groups (they must be from different groups but one of them may come from the front group).
      • Each dive shall have a different FINA designated number.
      • A change in position shall not constitute a different dive.
      • Dive numbers 100 and 200 may not be used at this level.

Bocce

Events Offered

  • Singles
  • Doubles and Unified Sports® Doubles
  • Team and Unified Sports® Teams
  • Half-Court Ramp Singles
  • Half-Court Singles
  • Half-Court Traditional Doubles
  • Half-Court Unified Doubles

At Fall Classic, bocce athletes may now enter two events, provided one event is Singles (Saturday competition) and the other event is a team event (Doubles, Unified Sports® Doubles, Team or Unified Sports® Team - Friday competition). At the area competition level, each area will have the flexibility to determine whether athletes can compete in more than one bocce event.

Note: Sideboards and backboards will be used on all courts at Fall Classic. These sideboards and backboards will be taller than a bocce ball.

Equipment and General Information

  • Bocce is played with eight large balls and one smaller target ball or object ball called the pallina. There are four balls to a side or team, and they are generally made in two colors to distinguish the balls of one team from those of another team. The large balls are also inscribed with distinctive lines to identify the balls of the players on the same team.
  • Bocce balls may be composed of wood or metal and of equal size. Official league and tournament balls may be from 107 millimeters (4.25 inches) to 113 millimeters (4.5 inches). Note: The new SOI rules state a maximum of 110 millimeters; SOTX will continue to allow up to 113 millimeters. The color of the balls is immaterial provided that the four balls on one team are clearly and visibly distinct from the four balls of the opposing team.
  • Pallina must not be larger than 63 millimeters (2.5 inches) or smaller than 48 millimeters (1.875 inches) and should be of a color visibly distinct from both bocce ball colors.
  • Measuring device may be any device that has the capacity of accurately measuring the distance between two objects, and acceptable to tournament officials.

Rules Highlights

(See extensive listing of rules in Official Special Olympics Sports Rules, bocce section, for more information.)

  • Ball Delivery
    All ball delivery attempts must be of an underhand style from behind the 10 foot throwing line.
  • Sequence of Play
    The pallina is rolled or tossed by a member of the team having won the coin toss to start the game. The player tossing the pallina must deliver the first ball. The opposing team will then deliver their bocce balls until the point is taken or they have exhausted their four balls. This "nearest ball" rule governs the sequence of played balls. The side whose ball is closest to the pallina is called the “in” ball and the opposing side the "out" ball. Whenever a team gets “in,” it steps aside and allows the “out” team to deliver.
  • Winning Score
    Singles - first player to 12 points
    Doubles - first pair to 12 points
    Team - first team to 16 points
    Half-Court Ramp Singles - first player to 8 points
    Half-Court Singles - first player to 8 points
  • Scoring
    At the end of each frame all those balls of one team closer to the pallina than the closest ball of the opposing team, which can be determined by an official viewing or using a measuring device. In the event of ties (two balls - one from each team equally closest to the frame), no points are awarded for that frame.
  • Rotation of Players
    The players of any given team may elect to play their ball in any rotation provided the player who tosses the pallina delivers the first bocce ball. The rotation may vary from frame to frame; however, no player may deliver more than his/her allotted number of balls per frame.
  • Please note: The end line is the start line for half-court bocce.
  • Singles (Ramp)
    Ramp bocce players shall compete only against other ramp participants in a separate division. Ramp players typically will not switch sides for each frame. Officials will have the final approval of all ramp devices used for bocce competition.
  • Half-court singles will play by the same modified rules as ramp but will require athletes to throw the pallina instead of using a ramp.
  • Half-court athletes may now enter two events at chapter. Half-court doubles and Half-court singles.
  • Half-court unified doubles falls under the Unified Sports Player Development Model. Level of Competition: Local only.
  • Unified Sports®
    Each Unified Sports® bocce doubles team shall consist of one athlete and one partner. Each Unified Sports® bocce team shall consist of two athletes and two partners.
  • Up to two alternates are now allowed to participate on a bocce team. These athletes have the opportunity to register for singles as well.
  • PLEASE NOTE: Assessment forms/scores are NOT REQUIRED for Fall Classic. We will classify every athlete on Thursday afternoon.
  • SOTX has recommended a standard for athletes who are blind, competing in bocce. The Sports Management Team approves the use of clapping by a volunteer as the recommended audible cue for athletes.
  • An absentee bocce player is not an option since athletes can register for two events at chapter.

Instructions for Bocce Skills Assessments

  1. Place the pallina in the middle of the court at the centerline.
  2. Have the athlete throw only four bocce balls (set one) from the 10 foot line.
  3. Measure the three closest to the pallina. Record in centimeters (cm) on the skills assessment score sheet on the centerline (CL) row. 
    Measure from the center side of the bocce ball to the center side of the pallina. This would be from the 2 closest sides.

    Note: 1 inch = 2.54 centimeters. (If it is easier – record measurements on a copy of score sheet in inches and convert to centimeters later).
  4. Add scores across and record total. This added score = one set.
  5. Repeat steps 1, 2, 3 and 4 – one more time placing the pallina at the centerline plus 10 feet (set two) and recording on the CL+10 ft. row.
  6. Repeat steps 1, 2, 3 and 4 – one more time placing the pallina at the centerline plus 20 feet (set three) and recording on the CL+20 ft. row.
  7. Total all three sets. The total will be this athlete’s entry for placement in the proper division (lower scores will be in higher divisions).

Note: Online metric conversion source: http://www.inches-to-cm.com/  At this site you put in the imperial measurement (inches) and it converts to metric (centimeters) for you.

Instructions for Half-Court Bocce Skills Assessments

  1. Place the pallina in the middle of the court 10 feet from the end line.
  2. Have the athlete throw only four bocce balls from the end line.
  3. Measure the three closest to the pallina. Record in centimeters (cm) on the skills assessment score sheet on the centerline (CL) row. 
    Measure from the center side of the bocce ball to the center side of the pallina. This would be from the 2 closest sides. 

    Note: 1 inch = 2.54 centimeters. (If it is easier – record measurements on a copy of score sheet in inches and convert to centimeters later).
  4. Add scores across and record total. This added score = one set.
  5. Repeat steps 1, 2, 3 and 4 – one more time placing the pallina 20 feet from the end line (set two) and recording on the End + 20 ft. row.
  6. Total both sets. The total will be this athlete’s entry for placement in the proper division (lower scores will be in higher divisions). 

Note: Online metric conversion source: http://www.inches-to-cm.com/  At this site you put in the imperial measurement (inches) and it converts to metric (centimeters) for you.

Flag Football

Events Offered

The following events are sanctioned by Special Olympics Texas and are to be offered at all local, area and chapter competitions. The actual events scheduled and conducted at local, area and chapter competitions will be determined by a minimum number of entries in each event. An athlete may enter team competition, Unified Sports team or Individual Skills.

  • Team Competition - 5-on-5 traditional team
  • Unified Sports - 5-on-5
  • Individual Skills - Run and Catch, Throwing for Accuracy, Throwing for Distance, Agility and Speed: Hand Off, Flag Pulling

General Information

The Official Special Olympics Sports Rules shall govern all Special Olympics flag football competitions (SONA version: May 17, 2015). As an international program, Special Olympics has created these rules based upon the National Intramural – Recreational Sports Association (NIRSA) rules for flag football. The National Intramural – Recreational Sports Association (NIRSA) rules shall be employed except when they are in conflict with the Official Special Olympics Sports Rules. In such cases, the official Special Olympics Sports Rules shall apply.

Individual Competition

Individual skills contest is a developmental opportunity.

Team Competition

  • Special Olympics Flag Football is non-contact.
  • A Special Olympics Texas Flag Football Team Evaluation Questionnaire is required to be submitted with all area, regional and chapter competitions.
  • Roster maximum is 12 and minimum is 5.
  • Playing uniform consists of matching shirts with numbers on front and back. The shirt must remain tucked in at the waist throughout the game.
  • All players must wear athletic shorts without pockets.
  • Players must wear rubber-cleated or flat-soled athletic shoes. Metal cleats, spikes, hiking boots or other equipment deemed dangerous by officials will not be allowed.
  • All players must wear a mouthpiece.
  • An intermediate (youth) size football will be used in all divisions.
  • A one-piece, Triple Threat flag belt will be worn during the game at all times; this will be the only belt allowed for SOTX competitions.
  • Playing field is 60 yards long (including end zones) and 25 yards wide.
  • The game will consist of two halves, each twenty minutes. Halftime will be five minutes.
  • Scoring: Touchdown is six points. Extra point from the 5-yard line is one point, from the 10-yard line is two points. Safety is two points.
  • If a game is tied at the end of regulation play then an overtime period will be played. In overtime, each team receives two plays from midfield and the team gaining the most points or gaining a yardage advantage is awarded one extra point and wins the game.
  • Due to safety risks, assisted devices such as canes, walkers, wheelchairs and service dogs are prohibited from use in team sports. Athletes who require assisted devices may compete in Individual Skills contests if they meet the performance requirements.

Unified Sports® Flag Football

  • Teams follow the NIRSA and Special Olympics rules.
  • Partners must be identified on lineups and lineups must be exchanged between coaches.
  • Teams must have three Special Olympics athletes and two partners on the field at any time. Teams may play with fewer partners - one.
  • Failure to adhere to the required ratio results in a forfeit.
  • Partners as quarterbacks may NOT pass to another partner.
  • Partners MAY handoff to another partner.
  • Partners shall NOT dominate play.
  • Unified Sports® teams are expected to comply with these rules without intervention by officials. Failure to "self-patrol" will be considered unsportsmanlike, and will be penalized accordingly.
  • A non-playing, dual-certified bench coach must be designated at the beginning of the game. The coach may not be listed as a player for that game or enter the game as a player.
  • Dominant play will be a judgment call determined by the officials on the field. Penalty will be a verbal warning and subsequent calls may result in disciplinary measures; see Disciplinary Measures on page E-4.

Dominant play is defined as: an action or play by a player that does not allow another teammate to play their position. All players shall be allowed meaningful involvement and play.

Additional information on Unified Sports® can be found in the Unified Sports (Section K) section.

The National Football league has partnered with SOTX to support the growth of Unified Flag Football teams. Teams can apply to grants through the NFL to help with uniform and equipment cost.

Golf

Attire

By the nature of the sport, proper attire during all golf competition is expected: no denim or blue jeans, no cut off shorts, no high top tennis shoes, no sleeveless shirts (men). Proper attire is a collared shirt, shorts or slacks, and soft spike golf shoes. Tennis shoes are acceptable. Wind suits and other outer gear for weather conditions are recommended.

Events Offered

The following events are sanctioned by Special Olympics Texas and are offered at local, area, regional and chapter competitions. The actual events scheduled and conducted will be determined by a minimum number of entries in each event, evenness of competition and ultimately the competition committee.

Level 1 (Individual Skills Competition)

  • Short Putt
  • Long Putt
  • Chip Shot
  • Pitch Shot
  • Iron Shot
  • Wood Shot

The purpose of the Individual Skills competition is to allow athletes to train and compete in basic golf skills. The development of these key skills is necessary prior to advancing on to Level 2 play.

Individual Skills Reminders

  • Entry scores for Individual Skills competition shall consist of the total average of the six skills.
  • Short putt, long putt and chip shot - any ball coming to rest in the path of the next attempt will be removed by volunteers.
  • Chip shot and pitch shot - teeing the ball will NOT be allowed.
  • Iron shot and wood shot - the athlete or coach may request that the volunteer tee the ball.
  • Iron shot and wood shot - a "rescue" club can only be used once. The same club cannot be used for the iron shot and the wood shot.
  • It is recommended that athletes have their own clubs. The competition format for each round may require a delegation/team be at several skills stations at the same time. Proper supervision of athletes need to be considered for this possibility as well.
  • A coach or chaperone may “direct” an athlete who has a visual impairment in the direction of the shot on the first of the five attempts.
  • No coaching of athletes is allowed, verbal or physical, after the first attempt at each skill.

Level 2

  • 9-hole, Alternate Shot Team Play (NOT considered Unified.) Partners and athletes must remain the same throughout an entire competition.

Level 3

  • 18-hole, Unified Sports®, Alternate Shot Team Play. Partners and athletes must remain the same throughout an entire competition.

Level 4

  • 9-hole, Individual Stroke Play (Must have a current Class A volunteer caddie.)

Level 5

  • 18-hole, Individual Stroke Play (Must have a current Class A volunteer caddie.)

Reminders:

  • Official Special Olympics Sports Rules shall apply and are based on the rules of golf as written by the Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St. Andrews (R&A) and the United States Golf Association (USGA).
  • Substitute Unified Level 3 partners are allowed ONLY if the new Unified partner competed at an area competition (even if it was with a different athlete) and three rounds of scorecards played as the new team can be submitted prior to Fall Classic.
  • Entries shall consist of six scorecards, with all six cards totaled, averaged and played in the format in which the individual or team is competing. Score cards can be scanned copies as long as they are legible.
  • The “Ten Stroke Rule” will be enforced. If a ball is not holed on the tenth stroke, play is discontinued for that hole, the ball is picked up, and a 10x is scored.
  • Partners and athletes must remain the same throughout all Level 2 and Level 3 competition.
  • Rule 6-7. Undue Delay; Slow Play: it is expected that a 9-hole round be no more than two and a half hours, thus an 18-hole round be no more than five hours. The Competition Committee shall enforce this rule by assessing penalties and disqualifications, if necessary. A course marshal shall use any means necessary to determine fault and only penalize the offending individual, team or group. Penalties could include added strokes and disqualification.
  • The Competition Committee reserves the right to move teams or individuals, if necessary. For example:
    • A team competing in Level 3 that is obviously not ready for that level of golf (indicated by score or pace of play), could be moved to Level 2 competition.
    • An individual in Level 5 who is obviously not ready for that level of golf, could be moved to Level 4 competition.
    • An individual in Level 4 who is obviously not ready for that level of golf, could be moved to Level 3 competition.
  • The "Seven Stroke Rule." At all area and chapter competitions, a Level 2 or 3 team can only score seven strokes better from day 1 to day 2 of competition. For example, day 1 scores are used as the qualifying score and the first of the two scores for a total of the two rounds that are played. If team A scores an 81 on day 1, the best they could score on day 2 would be a 74. If they shot a 71, a 74 would be recorded.
  • Coaches and caddies should review the USGA rule book for limitations and responsibilities for caddies.
  • A GPS (with no slope rating) is allowed.
  • As of January 2015, athletes and Unified Partners that enter averages over the maximums listed below will not be able to enter and play in that level of competition. Athletes and Unified Partners that shoot over these averages during competition will be disqualified and will receive a Participation ribbon.
  • >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
  • Teams are required to provide caddies for their Level 4 and Level 5 athletes who are competing at area, regional and chapter competitions. The caddies will need to be registered as Class A Volunteers with Special Olympics Texas and included on the Athlete Entry Form with the role code Caddie.
  • Golf maximum averages for Chapter Games will be enforced. Competition management, to determine placement in golf levels at Chapter, can use area results.
  • If a substitution is required in Level 2 and Level 3, the alternate participant must have been listed on the original entries for that competition as an alternate.

Unified Sports® Golf

All partners must have a Unified Sports® Partner Form on file with the chapter office. This requirement even applies to those partners who are playing Level 2 Alternate Shot Team Play (formerly known as Partners Team Competition).

This level of play is designed to give the Special Olympics golfer an opportunity for transition from skill to individual play, and progress under the guidance of a partner whose ability and knowledge of golf is more advanced than that of the Special Olympics athlete. As a result, this level does not function in the traditional Unified Sports® model where teammates are expected to be of similar ability. The partner serves as a coach and mentor, so that the Special Olympics golfer becomes self sufficient on the golf course.

Additional information on Unified Sports® can be found in the Unified Sports section.

Kayaking

The Official Special Olympics Sports Rules for kayaking shall govern all Special Olympics Texas competitions. As an international sports program, Special Olympics has created these rules based upon the International Canoe Federation (ICF) Flatwater Rules for kayaking found at www.canoeicf.com. ICF or National Governing Body Rules shall be used except when they are in conflict with the Official Special Olympics Sports Rules for kayaking or Article I. In such cases, the Official Special Olympics Sports Rules for kayaking shall apply.

Entry fees will be $30 for each competing athlete and Unified Sports® partner. A $15.00 per scratch (at registration or onsite during games) will result in this administration fee per athlete and Unified Partner.

Events Offered

The following events are sanctioned by Special Olympics. The range of events is intended to offer competition opportunities for athletes of all abilities. Programs may determine the events offered and, if required, guidelines for management of those events. Coaches are responsible for providing training and event selection appropriate to each athlete's skills and interest.

  • Singles Tourist Kayak - 200m and 500m
  • Doubles Tourist Kayak - 200m and 500m
  • Unified Sports® Doubles Tourist Kayak - 200m and 500m

Equipment

  • Standardized touring kayaks and paddles are to be provided by delegations or by each athlete for training and competition. All kayaks and/or paddles must meet ICF specifications.
  • Helmets may be deemed necessary by the event director if the course is in moving water, or if there are obstructions in the water where a capsizing athlete might strike his/her head.
  • Personal flotation devices (PFD) are required and must meet local standards set by National Governing Bodies (NGB) for water safety.
  • Aqua shoes are optional for athletes in practice and competition.
  • Rules

    • At the start line, athletes should be able to control the kayak, point to the proper direction of the finish line and keep the kayak stationary until the start of the race. Adaptations will be utilized for difficult weather conditions.
    • The start of all races will begin with the starting signal by a shot or a short, powerful sound. The starter will announce the time remaining before the start to the competitors by saying, "Start within 10 seconds." Also, a drop with a white flag (60cm x 40cm) from the shoreline will indicate the start of the race, along with the starting signal. If a competitor starts to paddle away before the start signal has been given, he/she will be charged with a false start. Automated starting systems may also be used.
    • Athletes must remain inside their assigned lanes or they will be disqualified.
    • If an athlete crosses the lane barrier and impedes the other athlete, this move will provide justification for disqualification through the protest procedure. The athlete who was impeded will have the option of starting the race at a later time for a proper score.
    • Coaches are allowed to assist athletes in and out of the kayak. Once the athlete is in the kayak and called to the start, the coach must report to the shoreline. No coaching is permitted from the shoreline; however, encouragement is always allowed.
    • Coaches will not be allowed to have a kayak in the water while competition is underway.

    Sailing

    The Official Special Olympics Sports Rules for Sailing shall govern all Special Olympics competitions. As an international sports program, Special Olympics has created these rules based upon the Racing Rules of Sailing of the International Sailing Federation (ISAF) found at http://www.sailing.org/. ISAF or National Governing Body (NGB) rules shall be employed except when they are in conflict with the Official Special Olympics Sports Rules for Sailing or Article I. In such cases, the Official Special Olympics Sports Rules for Sailing shall apply.

    Refer to Article 1, http://resources.specialolympics.org/article1.aspx for more information pertaining to Codes of Conduct, Training Standards, Medical and Safety Requirements, Divisioning, Awards, Criteria for Advancement to Higher Levels of Competition, and Unified Sports.

    Entry fees will be $30 for each competing athlete and Unified Sports® partner.

    A $15.00 per scratch (at registration or onsite during games) will result in this administration fee per athlete and Unified Partner.

    Official Events

    • A regatta shall consist of at least three races.
    • The Competition Committee shall provide potential competitors with a notice of race and racing instructions.
    • Racing for all levels of competition shall be available at regattas.
      • Level I — Unified Sports team: the Special Olympics athlete member(s) of the crew will have responsibility for head sail trim.
      • Level II — Unified Sports team: a Special Olympics athlete shall control the helm for 100 percent of the race commencing at the warning signal throughout the complete race until clearing the finish line.
      • Level III — All Special Olympics athlete team with an on-board coach. The athletes have complete control of the boat. The coach can offer verbal assistance. If, for any reason, the coach becomes physically involved with the sailing of the boat, the team must retire from the race and will be scored a “did not finish” (DNF).
      • Level IV — The entire team consists of Special Olympics athletes (no coach will be on board).
      • Level V — Special Olympics athletes shall compete single-handed.

    Composition of Teams (Level 1 and 2)

    • Crews shall be comprised of athletes with and without intellectual disabilities.
      • If the boat is typically raced by a crew of two, one member will be an individual with intellectual disabilities.
      • If the boat is typically raced by a crew of three or more, the majority of the crew shall be individuals with intellectual disabilities.
    • All crew members shall be able to swim, while wearing a PFD, a minimum of 10 meters.
    • All seizure-prone crew members shall be seizure free, with the aid of medication, for a minimum of one year.

    Divisioning

    • Each division should have no fewer than three boats and no more than eight.
    • If it is a one-day regatta, the scores of the first race are used for divisioning.
    • If more than three races are completed in a multi-day regatta, divisioning will be calculated on the first three races. If fewer than three races are completed in a multi-day regatta, the first race will be used to determine divisioning.
    • The race committee (competition committee) may elect to carry over the other medal round the score(s) from the divisioning races.

    Rules of Competition

    • Every racer shall wear a PFD at all times.
    • All regattas shall be conducted in accordance with racing rules of sailing.
    • The Competition Committee will publish a Notice of Race.
    • Scoring shall be in accordance with Racing Rule of Sailing Appendix A, Low Point System, except Rule A2 the exclusion of the boat’s worst score. Scores from the race or races used to determine divisioning will be included in the series score, based on the boat’s finishing position within their division.
    • If, for any reason, the coach becomes physically involved with the sailing of the Boat or the crew does not follow the rule for the Level of the competition, the team shall retire from the race and will be scored points for “did not finish” (DNF).

    Sailing Area and Facilities

    • Facilities used to host regattas need to provide safe access to the boats for all athletes, coaches and volunteers.
    • Scoring shall be based upon numerical order of finish: one point for first, two points for second, and so on.
    • All race courses shall be laid out as modified Olympic triangles.
    • The distance from the windward turning mark to the leeward turning mark shall be no greater than 2000 meters.
    • Race courses will be selected from the standardized course configurations for SOTX. These are:
      #1 - S A C F
      #2 - S A B C F
      #3 - S A B C A C F
      #4 - S A C A C F
      #5 - S A (Maximum distance of 1,000 meters and a Finish Line at A.)
    • S = Start; F = Finish; A = Windward Mark; B = Jibe Mark; C = Leeward Mark
    • All marks shall be left to port.
    • The distance from the windward turning mark to the leeward turning mark will be no greater than 200 meters.
    • Technical delegate may suspend racing due to weather conditions.

    Safety

    • Level 1 teams may elect to use Safety Officers (SO); and if they do, those teams are to be divisioned separately.
    • The role and responsibility of the SO is:
      • To ensure the well-being of the crew after collision or capsize.
      • At all other times, they serve as movable ballast and only under the direction of the crew.
      • Any other assistance provided by the SO will result in the team being disqualified for that race.
      • Competitors with seizure disorders, serious asthma, heart, or other ailments that could impact on their typical sailing performance shall provide information about these conditions to their coach and the Organizing Authority for the event. As a guide all single handed competitors should be seizure free, with or without the aid of medication, for a minimum of one year. Competitors who suffer minor asthma and other minor ailments may compete provided they have notified the Organizing Authority in writing. Competitors who suffer minor seizures should be cleared by a physician prior to participation. Where an Athlete’s coach is concerned about the Athlete’s ability, the coach should recommend the Athlete be accompanied by (a) another Athlete, (b) Unified Partner or (c) Coach as care giver.
      • All crew members shall be able to swim a minimum of 10 meters while wearing a Personal Floatation Device (PFD). The coach shall attach a statement to the registration form attesting to the athletes’ competence in this skill.
      • The Race Committee will consider safety first in making all decisions in conducting the regatta and running races
      • A safety and rescue officer shall co-ordinate all safety, rescue and emergency response operations. Race officials and safety boat personnel should be trained in operating powerboats and in man overboard drills.
      • Every competition venue will supply motorized support boats, with safety officers aboard, to provide assistance when needed. The ratio shall be at least 1 dedicated safety and rescue boat for every 8 racing boats. Rescue boat shall accompany all racing boats from the time they depart harbor until their return after racing.
      • Every support boat will be equipped with a first aid kit and appropriate rescue equipment. Sailboats should consider similar recommendations in accordance with the class rules.
      • Every competitor shall wear a Personal Flotation Device (PFD) certified by a national authority at all times while afloat and on the dock and staging areas except briefly while changing or adjusting clothing or personal equipment for safety or for comfort.
      • Coaches may go to the assistance of their competitors if they consider that the safety of the sailor is at risk. Once assistance is provided, the competitor should retire immediately from the race and notify the race committee.

    Softball

    Events Offered

    The following events are sanctioned by Special Olympics Texas and are to be offered at all local, area and chapter competitions. The actual events scheduled and conducted at local, area and chapter competitions will be determined by a minimum number of entries in each event.

    • Individual Skills 1: Base Race and/or Bat for Distance
    • Individual Skills 2: Base Running, Fielding, Hitting, Throwing
    • T-Ball Competition
    • Coach Pitch Team Competition
    • Co-Ed Slow Pitch Team Competition
    • Slow Pitch Team Competition
    • Unified Sports® Slow Pitch Team Competition

    General Information for All Events Offered

    The Official Special Olympics Sports Rules shall govern all Special Olympics softball competitions. Special Olympics worked with the Amateur Softball Association (ASA) to create these rules.

      • Due to safety risks, assisted devices such as canes, walkers, wheelchairs, and service dogs are prohibited from use in team sports. Athletes who require assisted devices may compete in Individual Skills contests if they meet the performance requirements.
    • Area & Chapter Entries:
      • A Special Olympics Texas Softball Team Evaluation Questionnaire (page M-16) must be submitted with entries for all area, regional and chapter competitions for all events with the exception of Individual Skills 1 & 2.
      • The roster maximum is 20; the minimum is 10.
    • Equipment:
      • 12 inch Easton Incrediball will be used for T-Ball Competition and Coach Pitch Team Competition.
      • Softballs used at area, regional and chapter competitions should be COR .52 (300 compression) for Co-Ed Slow Pitch Team Competition, Slow Pitch Team Competition and Unified Sports Slow Pitch Team Competition.
      • Helmets are mandatory on offense. Any defensive player may wear an approved helmet of similar color of the team uniform.
      • Catchers must wear a mask with throat protector and approved helmet. It is recommended that catchers also wear a body protector.
      • Metal cleats may not be worn at any time.
    • Field of Play:
      • The Official Diamond shall have pitching distance at 50ft and 40ft in Co-Ed Slow Pitch Team Competition, Slow Pitch Team Competition and Unified Sports Slow Pitch Team Competition.
      • Bases should be at 65’ but may be modified to 60’.
      • A safety home plate will be used at all area and chapter competitions. The safety home plate should be located 8’ back from the regulation home plate. The Commit Line should be located 20’ up the third base line measured from the back point of the regulation home plate. Information on the safety home plate can be found in the Official Special Olympics Softball Sports Rules.
    • Competition Information:
      • Suggested game time for local and area competitions is a maximum of one hour and 15 minutes in length. (At Fall Classic game time is 55 minutes.)
      • Batters will start with a 1-1 count in Co-Ed Slow Pitch Team Competition, Slow Pitch Team Competition and Unified Sports Slow Pitch Team Competition.
      • There is no courtesy foul allowed in T-Ball Competition or Coach Pitch Team Competition. At Fall Classic a courtesy foul is allowed in Co-Ed Slow Pitch Team Competition, Slow Pitch Team Competition and Unified Sports Slow Pitch Team Competition. After a batter has 2 strikes, if the batter hits a foul ball, the batter is not out. However, if the batter hits a second foul ball after 2-strikes, the batter is out.
      • Base runners cannot lead-off from a base or steal.
      • Batters may not bunt.
      • 6-9 Run Rule per Half Inning: In lower divisions of Slow Pitch Team Competition, Co Ed Team Competition and Unified Sports® Slow Pitch Team Competition, the classification team can determine that a run limit of six to nine runs per half inning be put into effect in order to speed up play and allow each team an opportunity to play more innings.
      • In the event of a tie, teams will play extra innings. The offensive team shall begin its turn at bat with the last batter from the previous inning being placed on second base. The batter starts with a 1-1 count in Co-Ed Slow Pitch Team Competition, Slow Pitch Team Competition and Unified Sports Slow Pitch Team Competition.
      • Mercy Rule: All games will be called if a team is winning by 15 runs after 3 innings or winning by 10 runs after 5 innings.

    Individual Skills

    • Entry scores for Individual Skills competition are required on athlete entries.

    T-Ball Competition

    • A “neutral zone” will be marked in an arc of 14 meters (45 feet, 11 ¼ inches) from home plate.
    • The batter must hit the ball within the foul lines and beyond the 14 meter neutral zone to be ruled a fair ball. If a batted ball does not leave the neutral zone, and the defensive player does not touch it, the ball will be called a foul ball.
    • A regulation game consists of six innings. A time limit of one hour shall be in place for all games.
    • The batting team’s half of the inning shall end when three outs have been made or the batting order is complete.

    Coach Pitch Team Competition

    The goal of this program is to develop the offensive and defensive skills required to progress from T-ball Competition to Slow Pitch Team Competition. The rules are presented in three parts: general, defensive and offensive. Unless covered in these modifications or the modified rules of Special Olympics, the rules of the National Governing Body shall be followed.

    Coach pitch softball cannot be played as a part of the Unified Sports® program.

    • General Rules
      • A batter will have five pitches to hit the ball in fair territory. Five pitches will constitute a strike out. There will be no walks. Foul balls will count as a pitch. If the fifth pitch is a foul ball, the batter will be out.
      • The umpire will ensure that the coach pitcher does not take an undue amount of time between pitches nor that he/she “coach” while pitching. The coach pitcher may encourage his/her batter to swing and to hit the ball. Once the batter hits the ball, coach pitcher must not move or give instructions to the batter until the play is over. To do so will bring one warning and the next infraction will cause the batter to be called out.
    • Defensive
      • The defense shall consist of 10 players stationed at regular softball positions with the exception being the pitcher. The pitcher will stand on either side of or behind the coach pitcher, but not in front of him/her.
      • The pitcher may not move once he/she has positioned him/herself until after the ball has been hit, the batter has swung or the catcher touches the ball (if there is no swing).
      • The coach pitcher shall not interfere with a ball that has been placed in play by a batter or by a defensive player trying to make an out. If a hit ball is touched in any way by the coach pitcher, the hitter is out and no runners may advance. If a ball thrown by a defensive player hits the coach pitcher, it will be up to the umpire to determine if interference is warranted.
      • The coach pitcher will position him/herself no closer than 36 feet from home plate. The coach pitcher must stand and throw the ball in an underhand motion consistent with the rules of the National Governing Body. In a standing position, the coach pitcher may not move in the way of the pitcher going for the ball. This will be called interference.
    • Offensive
      • A pitched ball that hits a batter is counted as a pitch. The batter will not be given first base.
      • The coach pitcher may encourage a batter to hit but may not leave the mound to encourage the batter.
      • The first and third base coaches will provide all instructions to the batters and the runners. Instructions such as positioning the batters, discussion with the batter or the changing of bats will require a time-out.
      • Play is stopped when either all runners have stopped, or a defensive player has the ball at a base in front of all runners. A runner shall not try to advance a base if the ball is at a base past the one he is approaching.
      • A team may decide to use a team member to act as the coach pitcher. In this case the same rules apply to him/her.

    Co-Ed Slow Pitch Team Competition

    • Team lineups must consist of 50 percent male and 50 percent female athletes.
    • Defensive Positioning.
      • 2 male, 2 female outfielders.
      • 2 male, 2 female infielders.
      • 1 male, 1 female in the battery (pitcher and catcher).
      • Alternate male and female in batting order.
    • Male athletes that walk will be awarded two bases. The runners on base may only advance if forced to do so.
    • After two outs if a male athlete walks, then the next female athlete in the batting order shall have a choice to walk or hit.

    Slow Pitch Team Competition

    See SOI Summer Sports Rules and General Information above under "Softball."

    Unified Sports® Softball

    • Partners, people without intellectual disabilities, must be identified on lineups and lineups must be exchanged between coaches.
    • 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. Team must play shorthanded if they cannot field 5 Unified Partners and must always field 5 athletes. An inability to follow these rules, due to injury or removal of a player including ejection by the umpire, will result in forfeiture.
    • Athletes and partners must be in the following fielding positions:
      • Outfield: Two Special Olympics athletes and two partners.
      • Infield: Two Special Olympics athletes and two partners.
      • Pitcher/catcher must be athlete/partner or partner/athlete.
    • If at any time, field positions are not correct, the game will be stopped and players placed in the proper positions.
    • Athletes and partners must alternate in the batting order.
    • If a team uses an extra player they must use two (one athlete and one partner).
    • Score keeper must keep up with substitutes. The athletes may only substitute for athletes and partners only for partners.
    • A non-playing, dual-certified bench coach must be designated at the beginning of the game. This coach may not be listed as a player for that game or enter that game as a player.
    • Dominant play will be a judgment call and will be made by the umpires on the field. Penalty will be a verbal warning and subsequent calls will result in disciplinary measures; see Disciplinary Measures on page E-4.
    • 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.

    Dominant play is defined as: an action or play by a player that does not allow another teammate to play their position. All players shall be allowed meaningful involvement and play.

    Additional information on Unified Sports® can be found in the Unified Sports (Section K) section.

    Triathlon

    Fall Classic will offer the following three Triathlon events:

    • Level 2 Individual Triathlon - one individual competes in all three events.
    • Level 2 Traditional Triathlon Relay - three athletes each competing in one leg of the three events.
    • Level 2 Unified Sports® Triathlon Three-Person Relay - two athletes and one Unified Sports® partner each compete in one of the three legs of the three events.

    Events Offered

    Individual

    Level Swim Bike Run
    Level 1 50m 2 miles 800m future
    Level 2 100m 4 miles 1 mile current chapter event
    Level 3 250m 8 miles 2 miles future

    Three-Person Relay

    Level Swim Bike Run
    Level 1 50m 2 miles 800m future
    Level 2 100m 4 miles 1 mile current chapter event
    Level 3 250m 8 miles 2 miles future
    Level 4 500m 12 miles 3 miles future
    Level 5 750m 15 miles 3.1 miles future

    General Information

    • Swim portion of triathlon shall be conducted in closed course pools (indoor or outdoor pools) with all proper aquatics safety considerations in place.
    • Bike portion of triathlon shall be conducted on a closed course.
    • Run can be held on track, closed road or cross-country style course.
    • All participants and coaches should receive detailed course information prior to the event.
    • All transition stations (from swim to bike and from bike to run) for individual and relay events will be set up similar to governing body sanctioned events.
    • Athletes training to compete in individual races should select the proper competition level with the consideration of the cumulative effects of triathlon participation.
    • Until further notice, only Level 2 will be offered at Fall Classic.
    • There are two coach certification options to be a triathlon coach: one coach approach and multiple coach approach. One coach approach: the coach must be triathlon certified, aquatics certified and either athletics or cycling certified; also, the coach must be Unified certified if coaching a Unified Sports three-person relay. Multiple coach approach: if more than one coach will be training the triathlon athletes, the triathlon certification, aquatics certification and either athletics or cycling certification must be held by one or more of the coaches; also, one must be dually certified in Unified Sports and one of the triathlon events if they are coaching a Unified Sports three-person relay.
    • In an effort to grow the number of athletes participating in triathlon, the Chapter Sports Management Team has agreed to the following:
      • The East Region has scheduled their Regional Triathlon Competition after the date of Fall Classic.
      • Athlete entries for the regional competition must be submitted to the area office at the same time as chapter entries.
      • Since athletes will not have the area competition as a pre-qualifier for chapter competition, they instead will need to compete at the area level in two out of the three sports throughout the year: aquatics, athletics or cycling.
      • Any athlete who competes at Fall Classic in triathlon, who does not attend the regional competition that follows will not be allowed to register the next year in triathlon at Fall Classic.

    The Sports Management Team has approved to allow triathletes to participate in one aquatics relay event at Fall Classic barring any scheduling conflicts.

    Unified Sports® Triathlon

    • Level 2 is the only level currently conducted - 100 meter swim, four mile bike and one mile run.
    • A three-person relay team MUST consist of three people - this applies to both Unified Sports® and traditional relays (no person can do two of the three legs).
    • A Unified Sports® three-person relay team consists of two athletes and one partner.
    • A Unified Sports® partner may compete in ANY of the three events in the Unified Sports® relay.
    • Relay times are based on cumulative score - the sum of the swim, bike and run times. Entries should include individual times for each person as well as the combined score.
    • A Unified Sports® coach may compete as a Unified Sports® partner in triathlon. A non-competing adult representative must be on-site to assist with any trouble-shooting that may occur while the coach is involved with competition.
    • Coach certification options to be a Unified Sports® triathlon coach:
      • – One Coach Approach: the coach must be certified in Unified Sports®, triathlon, aquatics and either athletics or cycling.
      • – Multiple Coach Approach: if more than one coach will be training the triathlon athletes, one or more of the coaches must hold certifications in triathlon, aquatics, and either athletics or cycling. One coach must be dually certified in Unified Sports® and one of the triathlon events.
    • The event code for Level 2 Unified Sports® triathlon three-person relay is: TRIUNR.

    Additional information on Unified Sports® can be found in the Unified Sports section.


    Section R:
    Winter Games

    The 25th annual Winter Games will be held in Austin, February 2-5, 2017. Competition will begin on Friday and continue through Sunday. The figure skating competition is to be held in Allen on February 17, 2017.

    Competition will be conducted in four sports: bowling, powerlifting, table tennis and volleyball. More than 2,000 athletes are expected to compete over the three-day period.

    Athletes may participate in only one sport at Winter Games, even if competitions are on separate weekend..

    All entry forms for the 2017 Winter Games should be sent to the appropriate area office. Teams should not send entries directly to the chapter office. Each area will establish their own deadline procedures for entries.

    Entry fees will be $30 for each competing athlete and Unified Sports® partner. Scratches during registration or during games will result in a $15.00 administration fee per athlete and Unified Partner. No late entries will be accepted. Check with your program/area director for entry deadline.

    Resource Information

    To request specific information on individual sports and competitions, consult the Official Special Olympics Sports Rules, which may be obtained through the area office.

    Bowling

    Keith Hass
    139 Mystic Parkway
    Spring Branch, TX 78070

    khass@gvtc.com

    Figure Skating/Speed Skating

    Marsha Brenneman
    207 Buck Bend
    Georgetown, TX 78628

    mrbrenneman1@mmm.com

    512.984.3744 Work

    Powerlifting

    Christy Cordella
    313707 Cattail Park Court
    Conroe, TX 77385

    christynewman@hotmail.com

    281.785.6310

    Roller Skating

    TBD

    Table Tennis

    Debra Blackwood
    1012 Canterbury Hill
    San Antonio, TX 78209

    saraffie@aol.com

    210.846.0355 Cell

    Volleyball

    Kim McCorkle 6009 Boyce
    Manor, TX 78653

    kmcco4@aol.com

    512.751.5846 Work

    Additional information may be obtained from the sports directors.

    Criteria for Advancement to Winter Games

    For bowling, volleyball, powerlifting, roller skating, figure skating, speed skating and table tennis, all participants must have competed in local events and their sanctioned area competition in their sport of choice during the current year. Athletes are not required to qualify for advancement to the Winter Games by placing third or better at area competitions.

    For all team competitions in which there are individual skills, SOTX will require a minimum of 8 participants to offer the skills event at Chapter Games. This will be determined at the time entries are due to the Chapter office.

    Allocation

    Area programs will distribute their bowling quota to local programs based on the number of registered athletes and requests by local programs for bowling slots. Requests for additional bowling slots must be submitted to the Director of Sports and Training. Those areas wishing to enter a Unified Sports® bowling team must arrange for that team to fall within the area’s total allotment for bowlers. For example, if Area 10 enters three Unified Sports® bowling teams (a total of 12 athletes), they will have 176 available slots for the rest of its delegation. Any Unified Sports® team(s) which advance to the Winter Games are at the discretion of the area planning committee.

    The following maximum number of participants apply in the other Winter Games sports:

    • Figure Skating 75
    • Bowling 2,600 traditional + 300 Unified Sports®
    • Powerlifting 150
    • Volleyball 50 teams
    • Roller Skating 150

    Although SOTX does not anticipate an excessive number of entries in most of these sports, we have established this quota to ensure that we do not exceed the time and space available for each sport.

    Bowling

    Events Offered

    The following events are sanctioned by Special Olympics Texas and are to be offered at all local, area and chapter competitions. The actual events scheduled and conducted at local, area and chapter competitions will be determined by a minimum number of entries in each event. An athlete may enter one event. Doubles may be male, female or mixed. Teams may be male, female or mixed (four person teams).

    • Singles
    • Doubles
    • Mixed Doubles
    • Team
    • Unified Sports® Team
    • Unified Sports® Doubles
    • Ramp Assisted
    • Ramp Unassisted

    2017 Chapter Games Sport Maximums

    Bowling - 2,600 traditional; 300 Unified Sports® (at Winter Games)

    2017 Winter Games Bowling Competition will be certified by the USBC

    The 2017 Winter Games Bowling Competition will be certified by the USBC under the Moral Sanction rule. This sanctioning allows all USBC certified bowlers, who are registered and part of Special Olympics Texas, the opportunity to receive any USBC awards for scores rolled during the tournament (e.g., if they roll a 200 and qualify under their average, the athlete will receive that award from the USBC). It is up to each athlete's coach to apply for the award. The coach must fill out the application and submit it to the association. The name of the tournament and the certification number will be posted at the venues in which there is competition.

    General Information

    The Official Special Olympics Sports Rules shall govern all Special Olympics bowling competitions. As an international sports program, Special Olympics has created these rules based upon United States Bowling Congress (USBC) rules for bowling. USBC rules shall be employed except when they are in conflict with the Official Special Olympics Sports Rules. In such cases, the Official Special Olympics Sports Rules shall apply.

    • For bowling, a regional quota will be in place in order to maintain a manageable, quality event. As indicated on the allocations, the total number of bowlers at the games may not exceed 2,600 traditional and 300 Unified Sports®. A bowler must compete in a local event and the area bowling tournament to become part of the pool of bowlers eligible to advance to Winter Games in bowling. This will allow area programs more flexibility in scheduling area bowling tournaments (they may still be held after the Winter Games entry deadline if necessary) and will assist coaches in advance planning by allowing them to predetermine how many bowlers (within their quota) they will take to Winter Games. Entry forms for bowling participants are due by the final deadline which will be set by the area office.
    • A scratch score based on a 15-game average shall be used for determining divisions. Heats (divisions) of no more than eight people will be based on the average score turned in. No handicap calculation is used when turning in entry scores or in determining ability divisions.
    • An individual handicap (100 percent of 200) will be used only in the calculation of final results and awards by meet officials.
    • Foul lines will be turned on for both area and chapter competitions.
    • Bowling ramps and other assistance devices may be used with the approval of the Special Olympics Bowling Competition Committee.
    • Athletes using ramps shall be placed in separate divisions from other bowlers in singles, doubles and team. Ramp bowlers shall compete with all other bowlers in Unified doubles and Unified team, as long as they keep up with the pace of play and do not affect the ability of others on the lane to complete their games.
    • Unified Partners and Athletes are allowed to utilize ramps in Unified Bowling events only as long as it does not slow down the pace of play and they do not require assistance to move or manipulate the ramp.  Qualifying scores must reflect use of the ramp in the average if a ramp is to be utilized at that competition.
    • In the unassisted ramp bowl, the athlete aims the ramp into position unassisted. A volunteer may assist with retrieving the ball from the return and placing the ball on the ramp only. The athlete positions the ball on the ramp and pushes the ball down the ramp towards the target. The volunteer may place one hand on the ramp after it has been positioned, solely to stabilize it. Absolutely no coaching or guiding of the ramp is allowed.
    • In the assisted ramp bowl, the athlete aims the ramp into position with assistance. A volunteer may assist with retrieving the ball from the return and placing the ball on the ramp. The athlete positions the ball on the ramp with assistance and pushes the ball down the ramp towards the target. The volunteer may guide, align, or direct the ramp and athlete, but may not support or assist with the ball’s forward movement. The volunteer may place one hand on the ramp after it has been positioned, solely to stabilize it. Coaches are allowed in the pit area only when their athlete is bowling.
    • Volunteer/Assistant Assisted Ramp Unassisted Ramp
      Help position the ramp Yes No
      Help retrieve ball from return Yes Yes
      Place ball on ramp Yes Yes
      Help position ball on ramp Yes No
      Help push ball down ramp No No
      Stabilize ramp with one hand Yes Yes
      Coach athlete while bowling No No
    • At the discretion of the bowling competition director, ramp bowlers may bowl up to three frames consecutively.
    • For tournament-level play, tournament directors may elect to make the tournament a scratch or a handicap tournament. Refer to the Official Special Olympics Bowling Rules.
    • At area competitions, all athletes will bowl a two-game series. At chapter competitions, athletes will bowl a three-game series.
    • At the discretion of the bowling competition director, a time limit may be implemented so that shifts may conclude as scheduled and not interfere with the following shifts.
    • The only time coaches are allowed in the pit is during assisted ramp bowling and then ONLY when their athlete is bowling. Coaches must have proper event credentials to enter the pit area.
    • Coaches will not be allowed in the pit areas, including during unassisted ramp bowling. Coaches may direct volunteers regarding ramp placement if necessary.
    • An athlete may use one or two hands to roll the ball.
    • USBC league play rules are in place during the chapter competition. The absentee score for each game shall be the absent member’s current average less 10 pins. In handicap leagues, the handicap shall be based on the absent member’s current average. When there are additional members on a team’s roster, the absentee score of the absent member with the most games bowled shall be used.
    • The absentee bowler rule applies to traditional doubles or team but does not apply to Unified Sports® competition. In Unified Sports® bowling, a doubles or four-person team must have all bowlers present (equal number of athletes and partners or they will be disqualified). Enter alternates to prevent this.

    Tardy Bowlers

    Bowlers arriving prior to the end of the third frame can bowl and compete for an award. Bowlers arriving after the completion of the third frame must sit out the remainder of the first game and be allowed to bowl the remaining games for a participation ribbon only.

    Clarification of Bowling Average and Bowling Handicap

    AVERAGE - (What is submitted as entry score on athlete registration form)

    Every bowler has an average (this is determined by the 15 games that they must bowl prior to competition). A bowler's average is easy to determine. To determine the average, simply add up the 15 scores bowled in training and divide by 15.

    Example: Bill's 15 highest scores from bowling training are:
    100 + 90 + 92 + 82 + 71 + 112 + 119 + 141 + 101 + 78 + 99 + 94 + 120 + 104 + 82 = 1,485 Total Score

    Take the total score of 15 games and divide it by 15 (1,485 divided by 15 = 99); therefore, 99 is Bill's bowling average. Bill's coach would enter him as a 99 on the athlete entry form.

    HANDICAP SCORING AT COMPETITION (How the final score is determined) – SOTX uses a 100 percent of 200 handicap scoring system.

    Example:

    Bill has a 99 average, so his handicap would be 200 minus his average (200 - 99 = 101); therefore, Bill has a handicap of 101.

    For every game that Bill bowls during the competition in which he entered as a 99 average, he will have 101 pins added to his score.

    Game 1 Score Game 2 Score Game 3 Score
    102 (+101) = 203 81(+101) = 182 133 (+ 101) = 234
    Grand total of three games plus handicap = 619

    The important thing to note is that Bill may end up bowling against bowlers with different handicaps than his (because they have a different average). So, it is possible that in some cases, the bowler who knocks over the most pins may not get first place once the handicap is factored into the final score.

    Coaches SHOULD only concern themselves with submitting the CORRECT AVERAGE for bowlers and not try to manipulate entry scores with the handicap scoring. The handicap is only used at competition as the sanctioned method of equalizing competition. Coaches that purposely enter false average scores in an effort to better their athletes' chances of getting a gold medal will be reprimanded and run the risk of having their athletes disqualified.

    Bowling Rabbit Percentage

    A 100 percent rabbit percentage will be utilized during the Winter Games bowling tournament. This means that if an athlete/doubles pair/team has a three-game average that is double the entry score or greater, then the athlete/doubles pair/team will be "rabbited" and awarded in a heat with scores that are more appropriate to the final result. See Section M for more information about the Rabbit Rule.

    Figure Skating

    Events Offered

    The following events are sanctioned by Special Olympics Texas and are to be offered at all local, area and chapter competitions. The actual events scheduled and conducted at local, area and chapter competitions will be determined by a minimum number of entries in each event.

    • Singles (Levels 1, 2, 3, 4)
    • Speed Skating: 50m race, 100m race
    • Pairs Skating (Levels 1, 2)
    • Individual Skills 1-11
    • Ice Dancing (Levels 1, 2, 3)
    • Badge Skills 1-12
    • Unified Ice Dancing (Levels 1, 2, 3)
    • Unified Pair Skating (Levels 1, 2)

    Individual Skills will now be allowed at all SOTX figure skating competitions. The skills can be found in the Special Olympics Sports Rules.

    General Information

    The Official Special Olympics Sports Rules shall govern all Special Olympics skating competitions. As an international sports program, Special Olympics has created these rules based upon International Skating Union rules for figure skating. International Skating Union rules shall be employed except when they are in conflict with the Official Special Olympics Sports Rules. In such cases, the Official Special Olympics Sports Rules shall apply.

    • Since figure skating is a competitive sport, dress should enhance and not detract from the skater’s technical proficiency.

    Singles Preliminary Round - Female

    • Figure skates should be clean and polished with laces tucked in.
    • Simple, fitted figure skating dress, skirt or jumper with turtleneck and/or sweater.
    • Sheer to waist pantyhose or tights, undergarments should not be visible.
    • No loose jewelry (e.g., necklaces or bracelets).

    Singles Final Round - Female

    • Figure skates should be clean and polished with laces tucked in.
    • Dress may have beading, sequins and/or lace, all done in good taste with the approval of a professional coach. No props may be used (e.g., hats, canes, boas, etc.).
    • Sheer to waist pantyhose or tights, undergarments should not be visible.
    • No loose jewelry (e.g., necklaces or bracelets).

    Singles Preliminary Round - Male

    • Figure skates should be clean and polished with laces tucked in.
    • Simple fitted pants (stretch material and plain color preferred) and long sleeved sweater or turtleneck. No sweat pants acceptable.
    • A well groomed appearance is highly recommended.

    Singles Final Round - Male

    • Figure skates should be clean and polished with laces tucked in.
    • Simple fitted pants or jump suit (stretch material of any color with simple decoration is acceptable as long as it does not interfere).
    • A well groomed appearance is highly recommended.
    • No props (e.g., hats, canes, etc.).

    Pair Skating

    • Refer to the dress requirements listed for the male and the female in singles final round competition.

    Ice Dancing

    • Refer to the dress requirements listed for the male and the female in singles final round competition.

    Speed Skating

    The following events are sanctioned by Special Olympics Texas and may be offered at all local, area and chapter competitions. The actual events scheduled and conducted at local, area and chapter competitions will be determined by a minimum number of entries in each event.

    An athlete may enter one event.

    • 50m Race - Straight Away
    • 100m Race - Half Lap Race

    Equipment

    All speed skaters shall wear long sleeved uniforms, elbow and knee pads, gloves or mittens of a protective nature and a safety helmet which shall have a hard shell.

    Powerlifting

    Events Offered

    The following events are sanctioned by Special Olympics Texas and are to be offered at all local, area and chapter competitions. The actual events scheduled and conducted at local, area and chapter competitions will be determined by a minimum number of entries in each event.

    Modified (skills) events are no longer offered.

    • Bench Press
    • Unified Sports® Bench
    • Squat
    • Unified Sports® Squat
    • Deadlift
    • Unified Sports® Deadlift
    • Combination 2
    • Unified Sports® Combination 2
    • Combination 3
    • Unified Sports® Combination 3

    General Information

    The Official Special Olympics Sports Rules govern all Special Olympics powerlifting competitions. As an international sports program, Special Olympics has created its own set of rules but has also consulted the rules of the International Powerlifting Federation (IPF) for powerlifting competition. Only the Official Special Olympics Sports Rules shall be followed for all Special Olympics powerlifting competitions. 

    • A competitor should be 16 years old or older.
    • During any competition organized on a platform or stage, nobody other than the lifter, the members of the jury, the officiating referees, the managers and the competing lifter’s coach shall be allowed around the platform or on the stage.
    • Before the beginning of competitions, the recognized officials must check the weight of the bar and discs so that the total weight may be identical with that announced.
    • A lift must be declared “no lift” and the lifter may be disqualified if the weights are dropped intentionally.
    • Scoring of the events shall be the maximum weight lifted for each event.
    • Combinations are the maximum weight for each event added together.
    • The Wilkes Formula shall be utilized. See OSOSSR book for more information.
    • No powerlifting program should be initiated without the assistance of qualified personnel.
    • If an athlete is competing in the combination event, it must be indicated on the entry form, otherwise the athlete is not eligible.
    • Weight of the bar: 20kg (45 lbs); with collars 250 kg (55 lbs). Athletes must use this standard bar.
    • A spandex shirt may not be worn under the lifting suit.
    • SOTX will follow the SOI rules for the benchpress. The coach cannot assist the athlete by lowering the bar to the athlete's chest or assist them in any other way.

    Squat

    Due to safety concerns, the squat event has not been offered to Special Olympics Texas athletes for powerlifting training or competition in the past. The squat requires more technique and understanding than deadlift or bench press.

    In response to the interest of some certified powerlifting coaches to offer this event to their athletes, Special Olympics Texas has decided to cautiously allow training and competition in this event under the following conditions:

    • Only athletes that are high level, more conditioned and more experienced powerlifters should train and compete in the squat event.

    Roller Skating

    Events Offered

    The following roller skating events are sanctioned by Special Olympics Texas and may be offered at local, area and chapter competitions. The actual events scheduled and conducted at local, area and/or chapter competitions will be determined by a minimum number of entries in each event.

    • 30m Carpet Race
    • 2 x 100m two-person relay
    • 30m Slalom
    • 4 x 100m four-person relay
    • Freestyle singles - Level 1, 2, 3 and 4
    • 30m straight line race
    • 100m Race-the-Track
    • Unified Sports® Freestyle
    • 300m Race-the-Track
    • Unified Sports® 4 x 100m relays
    • Unified Sports® 2 x 100m relays

    General Information

    The Official Special Olympics Sports Rules shall govern all Special Olympics roller skating competitions. As an international sports program, Special Olympics has created these rules based upon Federation Internationale de Roller Skating rules for roller skating. Federation Internationale de Roller Skating rules shall be employed except when they are in conflict with the Official Special Olympics Sports Rules. In such cases, the Official Special Olympics Sports Rules shall apply. These rules can be found on our website at www.specialolympicstexas.org. All Special Olympics Texas roller skating coaches must obtain a copy of the Official Special Olympics Sports Rules for detailed information on equipment, safety and competition.

    Equipment

    • Helmets are required during all speed skating events. Wrist guards and knee pads are optional but highly recommended.
    • In artistic events, protective gear, including helmets, wrist guards and knee pads, is recommended.

    Table Tennis

    Events Offered

    The following events are sanctioned by Special Olympics Texas and may be offered at all local, area and chapter competitions. The actual events scheduled and conducted at local, area and chapter competitions will be determined by a minimum number of entries in each event. An athlete may enter up to three events as determined by competition committee.

    • Singles
    • Doubles
    • Wheelchair Competition
    • Unified Sports® Doubles
    • Individual Skills: hand bounce, racket bounce, forehand volley, backhand volley and serve

    General Information

    The Official Special Olympics Sports Rules shall govern all Special Olympics table tennis competitions. As an international sports program, Special Olympics has created these rules based upon International Table Tennis Federation (ITTF) and U.S. Table Tennis Association (USTTA) rules. International Table Tennis Federation (ITTF) and U.S. Table Tennis Association rules shall be employed except when they are in conflict with the Official Special Olympics Sports Rules. In such cases, the Official Special Olympics Sports Rules shall apply. These rules can be found on our website. All table tennis coaches must obtain a copy of the Official Special Olympics Summer Sports Rules for complete information regarding equipment and rules.

    • An athlete participating in individual skills obtains an accumulative score. A player’s final score is determined by adding together the scores achieved in each of the five events which comprise the individual skills contest.
    • Note: Games are played to 11 - win by two points.
    • Players/teams alternate serves after every two serves.
    • Matches are best of any odd number of games (e.g., best 2 of 3; 3 of 5; 4 of 7).

    Rules Reminders

    Please see ITTF and SOI rules for complete information.

    Volleyball

    Events Offered

    The following events are sanctioned by Special Olympics Texas and are to be offered at all local, area and chapter competitions. The actual events scheduled and conducted at local, area and chapter competitions will be determined by a minimum number of entries in each event. An athlete may enter team competition, Unified Sports® team or one of the individual skills groups.

    • Team competition
    • Unified Sports® team
    • Individual Skills 1: Volleyball Juggle, Volleyball Pass, Volleyball Toss and Hit
    • Individual Skills 2: Overhead Passing, (Volleying) Serving, Passing (Forearm Passing)

    General Information

    The Official Special Olympics Sports Rules shall govern all Special Olympics volleyball competitions. As an international sports program, Special Olympics has created these rules based upon USA Volleyball rules. USA Volleyball rules shall be employed except when they are in conflict with the Official Special Olympics Sports Rules. In such cases, the Official Special Olympics Sports Rules shall apply.

    The majority of volleyball competition in Special Olympics Texas is conducted according to the rules of the governing body. The following are some of the more significant rules:

    • The 25-point rally scoring system will be used.
    • SOTX Volleyball Team Evaluation Questionnaire Form must be submitted with entries to all area, regional and chapter competitions.
    • Time-outs are limited to two per game, each being 30 seconds long.
    • No jewelry of any kind may be worn.
    • Under no circumstances may a team play with less than six players.
    • Prior to the start of the match and the deciding game, one of the captains will call the toss of the coin. The winner of the toss may elect to serve, receive or take choice of team area.
    • Substitutions are limited to three entries per player; a player shall not enter the game for a fourth time. Starting shall count as an entry. Starting players/substitutes re-entering the game must assume their position in the serving order in relation to the rotation on the score sheet.
    • There are a maximum of 12 substitutions per game.
    • Pool play competition format may be used at area and chapter competitions.
    • A referee must whistle when a player is bleeding or has blood on their uniform. The player must be removed immediately and may not return until properly treated and the uniform changed. (Bleeding will be treated as any other injury. If a band-aid can be put on in approximately 30 seconds, the player may continue to play. If the player cannot be taken care of in 30 seconds, a time out or substitution must be made. If a uniform change is needed, another matching uniform with a different number is allowed. If not available, a different uniform with the same number is allowed.)
    • The ball may be served from anywhere along the endline.
    • The ball may be played with any part of the body.
    • The ceiling is live if the ball hits on your side and you have plays left on the ball. The 23 foot (7 meter) limitation has been removed.
    • A three-point or a five-point serving rule can be used at all SOTX volleyball competitions. The SOTX Sports Management Team has made adaptations to this rule to prevent one dominant server from dictating the outcome of a game, thus affecting the integrity of a division. The classification team can determine for each division whether a sideout or rotation after a serve limit has been reached. The SMT has also determined that the three-point or five-point modification can be applied to any division that the classification team and competition committee feel is necessary in order to provide quality divisioning of teams.
    • In the USAV rules book it states that it is recommended and required that uniform numbers must be centered on the chest and on the back. It also states that it is recommended that the numbers be a minimum of 6" centered on the chest and a minimum of 8" centered on the back.
    • Due to safety risks, assisted devices such as canes, walkers, wheelchairs and service dogs are prohibited from use in team sports. Athletes who use assisted devices may compete in Individual Skills contests if they meet the performance requirements.
    • Each competition committee has the option to set the game cap to 30-30-17.

    Rule Modifications

    • The first server of the game is the right back player. Thereafter, the right front player rotates to the right back position. The service alternates when there is a foul by the serving team and the ball is awarded to the opponent who shall rotate clockwise one position (except first serve). Therefore, the starting lineup will be the first serving formation for both teams. It can be considered legal service if the ball is hit directly from the hand of the server.
    • A time limit of 30 minutes may be set for each game.
    • The Tournament Committee may utilize the following modifications for lower divisions:
      • The serve line may be moved closer to the net, but no closer than 4.5 meters (14 feet 9 inches.) Also, the serve area may be moved, toward the middle of the court, but no more than 3 meters (9 feet 10 inches) from the sideline.
    • A lighter weight, modified volleyball may be used. The size of the ball should be no larger than 81 centimeters (32 inches) in circumference and weigh 8 ounces. It should be as close as possible to the regulation size volleyball.
    • In all cases, regular and modified, a team shall consist of six players. The composition of a complete team, including substitutes, may not exceed 12 players. The tournament committee shall determine which, if any, divisions may utilize the modifications.
    • In 2001, the Sports Management Team passed a motion to allow for the service line to be moved to 4.5 meters from the net (no closer) and that an athlete can choose to serve anywhere behind that line during volleyball Individual Skills competition.

    Overall, this means that it is up to the volleyball classifiers and volleyball competition committee to determine which divisions will have service line and/or service number modifications. Any rules modification information for a division is to be shared with all coaches prior to the start of the competition brackets.

    Height of the Net

    • Men’s competition: 2.43m (7 feet, 11 5/8 inches.)
    • Women’s competition: 2.24m (7 feet, 4 1/8 inches.)
      If even one male is on the team, it is the male height of the net that is used.

    Unified Sports® Volleyball

    • Teams follow all USVBA and Special Olympics rules.
    • Partners, people without intellectual disabilities, must be identified on lineups and lineups must be exchanged between coaches.
    • Teams must have three Special Olympics athletes and three partners on the court at all times. If during competition the ratio is not maintained, it will be an automatic forfeit.
    • Athletes and partners must be in alternate positions.
    • A non-playing, dual certified bench coach must be designated at the beginning of the match. The coach may not be listed as a player for that match or enter that match as a player.
    • Dominant play will be a judgment call and will be made by the officials on the court. Penalty will be a verbal warning and subsequent calls will result in disciplinary measures; see Disciplinary Measures on page E-4.

    Dominant play is defined as: an action or play by a player that does not allow another teammate to play their position. All players shall be allowed meaningful involvement and play.

    Additional information on Unified Sports® can be found in the Unified Sports section.


    Section S:
    Development

    Fundraising for Your Team

    Start at the Beginning

    • Determine how much money your team needs by developing a budget.
    • Find volunteers who are willing to help you by heading up different projects.

    How to Raise Money

    There are many ways to raise funds to meet the financial needs of your team:

    • Special Events: Bowl-a-thon, dinners, auctions, dances, etc.
    • Sales: Popcorn sales, car washes, ad books, etc.
    • In-Kind Contributions: Donation of equipment, facilities, services from service organizations, schools, churches or recreation departments in your community.

    Important Information

    Before you ask for any contributions or plan an event, read the Special Olympics Texas fundraising Guidelines included in this section. These policies will give you some important information about what guidelines must be followed to meet state laws and Special Olympics policies. All fundraising projects or events must be approved in advance by Special Olympics Texas. A Team/Committee Event Planning Checklist must be completed and sent to your area office 90 days before the project/event is held.

    If You Plan . . . Then You Will Succeed!

    Any successful fundraising project or event depends on three important factors:

    1. The type of project or event you select.
    2. The people you choose to organize it.
    3. The timing for the project or event.

    Good organization and management prior to and on the day of the event or during the duration of a project will demonstrate that your team is organized and run by committed volunteers.

    Recognize Volunteers and Contributors

    Be sure to thank everyone who helped make the event or project a huge success. Recognition of a job well done, through a letter or certificate, or even through an announcement at the beginning of the event, is always appreciated and is the key to bringing back good volunteers year after year.

    Fundraising Guidelines

    Remember that the purpose for your fundraising activities must always support the mission and vision of our organization. Involve your athletes in fundraising activities to increase awareness.

    Area Fundraising Boundaries

    The geographic boundaries of each respective area office must be honored whenever fundraising occurs through any means. At no time may a team solicit funds or in-kind services from an out-of-state company, or from outside of your geographic territory.

    Tax Exempt Status

    Section 501(c)(3) of the IRS Tax Code grants tax-exempt status to nonprofit organizations, allowing them to raise funds for their charitable purpose exempt from federal income tax. Special Olympics Texas is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization. Therefore, other than ISDs and group homes, teams and/or athletes may not have their own 501(c)(3) tax identification number. Please refer to Section D for specific guidelines on tax exempt and/or 501(c)(3) status.

    Fundraising Events

    In light of increased liability on the part of Special Olympics Texas, staff must oversee any and all fundraising events. If your team wishes to host a fundraising event, you must first complete the Team/Committee Event Planning Checklist and submit it to the program/area director. If your team is conducting the event, then it is considered a SOTX event. Question number five should be marked yes and question number six would be no. After initial assessment, you may be asked for additional information, including questions related to food and beverage preparation and service, event budget, targeted sponsors and other income sources, etc. Teams may not sign contracts without approval from the chapter office. Likewise, teams may be asked to submit a pre-event budget and a post-event budget, to ensure that events which bear our name and/or logo are effective. Submitting this form ensures that staff are aware of your event so they may assist you and, if people call for information, staff can validate the event and provide accurate information.

    When planning an event, please refer to and review the Special Olympics Corporate Insurance Policy starting on page H-5; some fundraising events/activities may be excluded from coverage.

    Contractual Agreements

    A team may not sign a contract with any individual or organization conducting fundraising until it receives approval from the chapter office. Any contracts must first be forwarded by area staff to the Vice President of Resource Development for review and approval. In some cases, Special Olympics Texas’ insurance company may require additional information (See Fundraising Event Flowchart). If this is the case, the team will receive a phone call from SOTX staff and the insurance company to discuss contractual requirements before the contract may be executed. (Please allow two weeks for contracts to be reviewed and approved.)

    Sponsor Solicitation

    Before seeking corporate sponsorships, please review the enclosed list of major companies/ organizations that already sponsor SOTX activities. These companies are off limits to teams at all times.

    Statewide or International Companies

    Businesses, corporations or organizations that have multiple sites or operate statewide, nationally or internationally, may not be solicited without prior approval from the Vice President of Resource Development. All sponsor solicitation must be pre-approved. Please contact your area director or call the Vice President of Resource Development at 800.876.5646, ext. 2938.

    Alcoholic Beverage Companies

    Special Olympics teams may not publicly or visibly recognize the manufacturer of alcoholic beverages or the trademark of an alcoholic beverage at Special Olympics events or activities. Non-alcoholic beer products are treated in the same manner as alcohol and beer products. Alcohol distributors (e.g., “Andrews Distributing” - ok; "Coors Distributor" - not ok) may sponsor team fundraising projects if the name of the company does not have a beer or an alcohol brand listed in it.

    Tobacco Product Companies

    A Special Olympics team shall not allow the manufacturer or distributor of a tobacco product to publicly or visibly connect the trademark of a tobacco product with Special Olympics in any way.

    Sponsor Recognition

    Athletes and coaches may carry and use non-apparel, non-sports equipment items, such as tote bags, bearing small and attractively designed identifications of corporate or organizational sponsors except at competitions and related activities.

    Athletes and coaches who are not in competition and who are not at sports venues (e.g., training sessions, practices, trips) may wear apparel bearing small and attractively designed identifications of corporate or organizational sponsors.

    Opening and Closing Ceremonies are deemed to have the same status as sports venues. Hence, team or delegation members and officials shall not wear warm-up suits, jackets, caps, etc. which bear corporate or organizational logos at any time.

    Tax Deductions – Informing Your Sponsors

    When you acknowledge donations, you should be aware of IRS rules. If you receive a donation of $250 or more, your thank-you letter must include this statement: “Special Olympics Texas did not provide any goods or services in return for this gift.” This statement can appear anywhere in the body of your letter or even at the bottom of the page, beneath your signature. Gifts made to independent non-centralized teams (i.e., school districts, group homes, etc.) are not donations to SOTX, and will not be recognized as such.

    Fundraising Utilizing Social Media

    Athletes, teams, coaches, family members and other individuals or entities may not solicit funds through social media sites in the name of Special Olympics Texas. For SOTX's complete Social Media Policy, refer to Section U.

    Direct Mail Solicitation

    SOTX utilizes the services of SOI as its vendor to conduct direct mail campaigns to individuals throughout Texas. A team may not at any time conduct or enter into an arrangement or contract for direct mail services.

    Telemarketing (Telephone Solicitation)

    Special Olympics Texas has contracted with Heritage Medallion Telemarketing to provide these services exclusively in the state. At no time may a team enter into a contract for telemarketing services or conduct a campaign themselves.

    Raffles/Drawings

    Your team may not solicit funds through raffles or drawings. The State of Texas limits the number of raffles a non-profit organization may conduct during a calendar year to two. The Chapter Office reserves the right to conduct these two raffles per year. The state regulations governing a non-profit's participation in raffles are very restrictive and SOTX will adhere to all such regulations. A team may benefit from a raffle or a drawing but only if a third party entity plans, conducts and concludes the raffle by turning funds over to the team as a contribution from a third party entity.

    United Way Affiliation

    A team may not participate in United Way campaigns, may not apply for funding from United Way and cannot be an affiliate or a member of a local United Way. Likewise, a team may not accept United Way funding. If your team receives a United Way donation, please mail the check to the Special Olympics Texas chapter office and it will be returned to United Way.

    Grant Applications

    All grant proposals must be coordinated through the Development Director – Grants (devdir_grants.chp@sotx.org) in advance of submitting any applications. If you have identified a viable foundation prospect, the Development Director – Grants will review your request to complete a grant application on behalf of the Team. Development Director – Grants and/or the VP of Resource Development will decide if an individual, on behalf of a Team, would be approved to proceed with an application or dinied approval on a case-by-case basis.

    Area staff shall provide information to Development Director – Grants regarding the delegation’s standing. Proposals must be approved by the Development Director – Grants prior to submission; all forms and letters, etc. must be provided for review with at least a two-week turnaround time. Applications requiring the signature of an authorized SOTX representative MUST be signed by SOTX staff on behalf of SOTX.

    Applications requiring the signature of an authorized SOTX representative MUST be signed by SOTX staff.

    Teams must consult the Protected Corporate and Organizational Contacts list in the SIG; please note the most current list is maintained by the Development Director – Grants and will be consulted during the pre-approval process. Teams may not apply for funding from protected foundations identified by the Development Director – Grants as SOTX funders/prospects.

    Grant funds received by teams that were not reviewed and approved by the Development Director – Grants prior to submission are subject to refusal by Special Olympics Texas, Inc. All grants are subject to final review by Special Olympics Texas, Inc.’s President/CEO and/or Board of Directors.

    The maximum request allowed for a team is $4,500 per funder, per year. This amount is based on IRS criteria related to reporting and maintaining Special Olympics Texas, Inc.’s nonprofit status.

    Merchandise Sales

    Sale of merchandise is an important means for SOTX to raise money for our programs. Merchandise is sold at our state games, as well as at most of the larger area competitions. Teams and committees are not permitted to sell any souvenir items at competitions if SOTX is offering merchandise. Please check with area staff in advance to determine sales plans at area competitions.

    Discounts for Uniforms and Equipment

    Check with your area director before purchasing uniforms, etc. It is possible that SOTX staff can secure a lower bid on apparel and equipment through one of our vendors.

    Scholarships

    The Torch Run is now the largest grassroots fundraising program benefiting Special Olympics in the world. In many communities, these officers welcome the opportunity to become involved with your team and your training.

    In addition, the Texas Law Enforcement Torch Run® raises funds each year to help support Special Olympics Texas. A portion of these funds are available for team scholarships but only if an application is submitted on a timely basis and only if your Team's financial account is centralized with SOTX. Contact your local office for more information about these scholarships and how to apply, or fill out the form in section S-10 and submit it to your area office.

    Teams are responsible for submitting any and all receipts that substantiate use of the scholarship funds to the chapter finance department within 60 days of receipt of funding.

    Protected Corporate and Organizational Contacts

    The following is a partial list of businesses or organizations that are current SOTX sponsors. A team must contact the area office before approaching a local franchise for a donation so the company only receives one “knock on the door.” Of particular importance is attention to our Official Partners, who are always off limits: Coca-Cola Refreshments, Food Town, H-E-B Tournament of Champions Charitable Trust, Law Enforcement Torch Run, UnitedHealthcare and Walmart. If you have any questions about approaching a company for a sponsorship, please contact the area Development Director or Vice President of Resource Development.

    View or download the Do Not Call List.

    This list is updated quarterly. For the most up-to-date list or to check a name before soliciting, contact the Vice President of Resource Development at 800.876.5646.

    The ABCs of Fundraising

    Special Olympics Texas offices across the state will work with our teams to provide whatever assistance possible to make fundraising “fun” raising for teams. Assistance may include:

    • Sample letters of solicitation.
    • Sample thank you letters and recognition ideas.
    • Review event plans and budgets and provide feedback and suggestions.
    • Provide critical information regarding insurance issues to minimize risk.

    The Keys to Effective Fundraising

    • Anyone can learn to raise money.
    • People give for their reasons . . . not yours.

    The Most Important Thing to Remember in fundraising is that People Give for Three Reasons:

    • Because they support your team or the cause.
    • Because of how they are asked or who asks them.
    • Personal reasons (direct stake in the program such as an athlete acquaintance).

    Every good fund raiser needs to promote the cause in a clear, emotionally appealing way and to select appropriate people to deliver the message or, in other words, “make the ask.” Any good fundraising campaign will also find a way to recognize, promote and thank its contributors.

    Fundraising – How to Ask for Money

    1. Make a cash or in-kind contribution yourself, and let them know . . . as a coach, I volunteer more than eight hours a week during training.
    2. Ask in person when at all possible. Using the phone or writing a letter makes it easy for you, but it also makes it easy for them to say NO.
    3. Practice your “ask” or “pitch” in front of the mirror or with a friend.
    4. Tell the truth; don’t exaggerate. Giving to Special Olympics will not solve world hunger nor will Tim Shriver write a personal thank you.
    5. Stress the cause . . . not the organization. Causes are emotionally appealing; organizations are brick and mortar. This is called "selling the mission!"
    6. Tell them why you are involved or committed.
    7. Don’t talk them into saying YES, but instead remove the reasons to say NO.
    8. Avoid putting other causes down and avoid saying such things as: “Give the money to us and not the local area office or chapter office. We never see that money.” That shows a lack of teamwork and a selfish attitude that often won’t appeal to donors. And remember, the donor should always have the opportunity to designate how their contribution is used.
    9. Avoid “bail out” please. No one likes to support a sinking ship. We spent all of our money on these cool jackets and now our athletes will run barefoot if you don’t give.
    10. Be yourself.
    11. The number one reason why people don’t give . . . they weren’t asked. You are not asking for yourself. If you really believe in the value of Special Olympics, why not give other people the opportunity to be a part of something so important and meaningful.

    Sample Thank You Letter

    Date

    Personalized with Name

    • Address
    • City, State, ZIP

    Dear (always personalize):

    Recently, you (your company) donated to XYZ Team. Your donation made a real difference in our ability to participate in many competitions across the state, nation and around the world. (Insert an example such as “Because of your generosity, xx athletes were able to travel to (city) to compete in the (competition name).

    On behalf of the (number of athletes) athletes on our team, we thank you for your generous contribution of $_____. We are pleased that you have chosen Special Olympics Texas and our local team to help make a difference in the life of a person with intellectual disabilities.

    We believe that Special Olympics reveals the very best in human nature and character. We feel our families are strengthened, and we hopefully help the community at large to accept and respect people who may be different. It is only through the continued support of people just like you that our athletes are able to participate in this program.

    We invite you to see the athletes you support in action. You can share in their many accomplishments because your contributions allow them to be the best they can be. Our athletes practice (dates and times) at (location). We encourage you to stop by or call us and you will see the difference your support has made in the training and dreams of our athletes.

    Thank you again,

    Name

    • Address
    • Telephone
    • “Special Olympics Texas did not provide any goods or services in return for this gift.”
    • (include this statement for gifts of $250 or more)

    Fundraising Event Flowchart


    Section T:
    Families

    Families with children who have intellectual disabilities are like other families; however, having a child with special needs often thrusts them into situations that may make their everyday lives more challenging. Special Olympics Texas allows families the opportunities to be a part of a year-round sports training and competition program which provides the entire family with opportunities for sports, social interaction and fun.

    Special Olympics Texas provides an opportunity:

    • For families to share in the accomplishments of their children.
    • To share the Special Olympics joy with other families.
    • To allow the extended family the opportunity to be part of a year-round sports training and competition program.

    Families are Special Olympics Texas’ most powerful resource. Families help coach, transport, fundraise, officiate, chaperone and train other volunteers. Families are Special Olympics’ most highly motivated and enthusiastic goodwill ambassadors. The Special Olympics Texas families program provides educational and legal information, support and compassion to families of children with intellectual disabilities.

    The Special Olympics Texas families program offers support through:

    • Newsletters.
    • Families Handbook (downloaded from our website).
    • Fun area family activities like picnics and banquets.
    • Family line of souvenirs (look for the family welcome booth at chapter events).
    • Family education hospitality booths/tables at Special Olympics events.
    • The area and chapter family of the year awards.
    • Family home training programs which assist in sports training and physical conditioning.
    • Family resource guide.
    • Area network directories.
    • Adult outreach focus area experts.
    • Family Support Network Committee members
    • Resource Fair vendors at Chapter Games.

    Since families are such an integral part of SOTX, we are trying to capture the family information of new and existing families using the Family Registration Form. This form should be filled out by all family members and submitted to the area or chapter office. This information will help us to disperse Special Olympics information to all families of SOTX athletes.

    If you would like to provide activities for families in your area and promote family involvement, Special Olympics Texas will provide you with a families manual (produced by Special Olympics, Inc.).

    The title of the families manual is “The Power Behind the Glory That is Special Olympics: Families.”

    The manual gives activity ideas for the following topics:

    • Family Involvement
    • Utilizing Families Effectively
    • Family Committees
    • Families and Games
    • Developing a Family Involvement Action Plan
    • Family Camps and Family Days
    • Family Home Training
    • Family Members Becoming Coaches

    Special Olympics Texas encourages you to find support through the many organizations that exist for family members such as:

    • National Parent Teachers Association (PTA)
    • Parent to Parent Network - PATH Project
    • Exceptional Parent Magazine
    • National Information Center for Children and Youth with Disabilities (NICHY)
    • National Association of State Directors of Special Education
    • President’s Committee on Employment of the Handicapped
    • Administration of Developmental Disabilities
    • Family Resource Coalition
    • National Parent Network on Disabilities
    • The Arc (formerly the Association for Retarded Citizens)
    • Beach Center on Families and Disability
    • Texas Project First
    • Department of Health and Human Services (Formerly DADS)
    • Texas Parent 2 Parent
    • Private Providers Association of Texas (PPAT)
    • Provider Alliance for Community Services of Texas (PACSTX)
    • Texas State Independent Living Council
    • Coalition of Health Services

    Family/Guardian Code of Conduct

    The Family/Guardian Code of Conduct is designed to assist parents and friends in abiding by the mission and philosophy of Special Olympics. Respect for all persons associated with Special Olympics Texas will be expected.

    This code will be used on an as-needed basis. Its intended purpose is to clarify expected behaviors of family and friends attending Special Olympics events.


    Section U:
    Public Relations/Communications

    Email Communications and eNews

    Receiving Electronic Notifications and Updates

    SOTX conveys information primarily through electronic communications, which requires you to first register on the SOTX website. To begin receiving “E” notifications, all you need is a current email address. You can easily manage your “E” subscriptions online at www.specialolympicstexas.org and obtain monthly eNews and electronic communications. Once you have registered and are logged in, you will be able to select the emails you wish to receive.

    For privacy reasons, SOTX cannot make changes to your account. If you need to change your email address on file, or would like to remove yourself from our mailings, you must make the change. At the bottom of every email communication, there are links to visit the “Subscription Management Page” and “Remove” to make those changes to your account. You may also update your subscription at any time by visiting our website at www.specialolympicstexas.org and clicking the "Registered User Login" link. Contact us at communications@sotx.org for further assistance.

    During Chapter Games (Winter Games, Summer Games, 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: fallclassic

    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.

    SOTX Stories

    We are always looking for stories about the great things happening in the lives of our SOTX family. If you know an athlete, coach or volunteer who has accomplished something extraordinary or is deserving of recognition, please let us know. We want to hear from you! Please email items of interest to communications@sotx.org.

    Athletes are at the heart of our movement; therefore, we want to highlight them as much as possible. By completing an Athlete Profile Form and submitting it to the communications department, you can help us accomplish that goal. Athlete profiles are used for eNewsletters and for stories on our website. If you would like to submit an athlete for inclusion on our website or in our eNews, please complete the Athlete Profile Form and submit it, along with a high resolution (3MB or larger) jpg photo of the athlete, to the chapter communications department (communications@sotx.org).

    Social Media Guidelines

    Social media plays an important role in the lives of Special Olympics Texas athletes, coaches, volunteers, families and fans. We would like to invite everyone to join the conversation on Facebook, Facebook Live, Snapchat, Twitter, YouTube and Pinterest.

    Join us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/SpecialOlympicsTX.

    Follow us on Twitter at www.twitter.com/SOTexas.

    Watch YouTube videos at www.youtube.com/specialolympicstexas.

    Follow us on Instagram at www.instagram.com/SpecialOlympicsTX.

    Follow us on Snapchat at www.snapchat.com/add/so.texas

    Follow your area page on Facebook. The link will be "sotx" followed by your area number:

    www.facebook.com/sotx1

    www.facebook.com/sotx2

    www.facebook.com/sotx4

    www.facebook.com/sotx5

    www.facebook.com/sotx6

    www.facebook.com/sotx7

    www.facebook.com/sotx9

    www.facebook.com/sotx10

    www.facebook.com/sotx11

    www.facebook.com/sotx12

    www.facebook.com/sotx13

    www.facebook.com/sotx14

    www.facebook.com/sotx16

    www.facebook.com/sotx17

    www.facebook.com/sotx18

    www.facebook.com/sotx19

    www.facebook.com/sotx20

    www.facebook.com/sotx21

    www.facebook.com/sotx22

    Comments and Posting on Social Media Sites

    We encourage you to join the conversation by leaving comments, posting pictures, tweeting about your experiences and sharing your thoughts with us. However, social media provides a global stage that knows no bounds and reaches all audiences. We ask that when you do post comments, pictures, tweets, etc., that you do so in consideration of the mission and vision of Special Olympics Texas. All comments are monitored. If comments, photos, tweets, or any other form of online contact with SOTX are not constructive and do not align with the below standards, we will delete any such comment/post and/or ask you to remove it from your page. When commenting or posting material it is important to remember to:

    • Be Respectful – Please use respectful and appropriate language. Comments will be removed that use obscenities, personal insults, ethnic slurs or other disparaging language. Refer to the Language Guidelines for appropriate terminology.
    • Stay on Topic – Special Olympics Texas is a sports organization that provides year-round sports training and athletic competition in a variety of Olympic-type sports for children and adults with intellectual disabilities. Social media is an ideal place to share stories and celebrate athletes’ accomplishments. The goal of our social media sites is to promote conversation around these topics and address issues that affect our population. An example of an issue is the R-word campaign and using social media as a channel to reach new audiences.
    • Protect Your Privacy – Comments, posts and pictures are visible to the public, so it is important that you refrain from sharing personal information such as your email address, telephone number or home address.
    • Observe Copyright and Trademark Policies – There is no way to prevent the logo from being downloaded from social media sites, therefore it may not be uploaded or used on social media pages.

    Using Social Media for Fundraising

    Many people use and enjoy social media communities because they are not advertisements, but rather a venue for authentic conversation that is relative, informative, and often beneficial. Teams may not use social media sites to solicit donations. Athletes, teams, coaches, family members and other individuals or entities may not solicit funds through social media sites in the name of Special Olympics Texas. For further information about fundraising guidelines, please refer to Development (Section S).

    Facebook pages may not be created for SOTX events.

    Personal/Team Social Media Sites

    When creating your own or your team’s social media page, we encourage you to be yourself. We have created Special Olympics Texas communities for you to join; you may not use our logo and/or name “Special Olympics Texas” when creating your own personal or team pages and profiles, to avoid confusion over identity and ownership. If a team would like to create a page independent of the SOTX page, please follow the guidelines for logo usage and trademark policies available in this section.

    • Groups – Many Facebook users utilize groups to show their affiliation to groups. If you would like to create a group involving Special Olympics Texas, so please send those suggestions to communications@sotx.org and we will work with you to organize groups and members. Groups may not be created using the name or identity of Special Olympics Texas (SOTX).
    • Logos – The logo may not be used under any circumstances on social media sites, since there is no way to protect it from being downloaded by users.

    We hope that you will join our social media community. As friends of Special Olympics Texas, we ask for your help in monitoring pages and alert us to content that may be inconsistent with the SOTX mission, so that we can continue to protect our organization and athletes. Please email communications@sotx.org if you have questions or see anything inappropriate or disrespectful on our pages or on pages of others.

    Language Guidelines

    It is critical that you use appropriate terminology when speaking about Special Olympics Texas. In doing so, you help us educate the public and reinforce our organization’s brand. Please notify the Vice President of Communications of all media interviews and speaking opportunities prior to completion. We can then provide you with the most up-to-date information about SOTX to ensure we are communicating a consistent message.

    Appropriate Terminology

    • A person has intellectual disabilities, rather than is mentally retarded; is suffering from, is afflicted with, or is a victim of mental retardation or intellectual disabilities.
    • Individuals or people with intellectual disabilities.
    • A person uses a wheelchair rather than is confined or restricted to a wheelchair.
    • Distinguish between adults and children with intellectual disabilities. Use adults or children, or older or younger athletes.
    • “Down syndrome” has replaced “Down’s Syndrome” and “mongoloid.”
    • Refer to participants in Special Olympics as athletes. In no case should the word appear in quotation marks. Do not refer to athletes as Special Olympians or Olympians, rather Special Olympics athletes.
    • When writing, refer to people with a disability in the same style as people without a disability: full name on first reference and last name on subsequent references. Resist the temptation to refer to an individual with intellectual disabilities as “Bill,” rather than the journalistically correct “Bill Smith” or “Smith.”
    • A person is physically challenged or disabled rather than crippled.
    • A person is visually impaired rather than blind.
    • Use the words “Special Olympics” when referring to the worldwide Special Olympics, Inc. program, SOI may be used on second reference.
    • Use the words “Special Olympics Texas” when referring to the Texas Chapter of Special Olympics. “SOTX” may be used on second reference.
    • The six statewide competitions for Special Olympics Texas are called “Special Olympics Texas Summer Games,” “Special Olympics Texas Fall Classic,” “Special Olympics Texas Winter Games,” "Special Olympics Texas State Flag Football Competition," "Special Olympics Texas Kayaking and Sailing Competition" and "Special Olympics Texas State Equestrian Competition."

    Terminology to Avoid

    • Do not use the label “kids” when referring overall to Special Olympics athletes. Adult athletes are an integral part of the program.
    • Do not use the adjective "unfortunate" when talking about people with intellectual disabilities. Disabling conditions do not have to be life-defining in a negative way.
    • Do not use the word “the” in front of Special Olympics unless describing a specific Special Olympics event or official. Saying “the” Special Olympics implies that Special Olympics is a once a year event when, in fact, it is a year-round movement.
    • Do not sensationalize the accomplishments of people with disabilities. While these accomplishments should be recognized and applauded, people in the disability rights movement have tried to make the public aware of the negative impact of referring to the achievements of physically or mentally challenged people with excessive hyperbole.
    • Do not refer to Special Olympics Texas as “Texas Special Olympics” or “Special Olympics of Texas”. The ONLY correct reference is Special Olympics Texas.
    • Do not use the word “Olympic” when referring to our athletes, programs, games, etc. The word should always have an “s” on the end (e.g., Special Olympics Texas, Special Olympics athletes, Special Olympics games, etc.).
    • Do not refer to your team by listing “Special Olympics” after your team name (e.g., El Paso Special Olympics is incorrect usage). You may put the words “Special Olympics Texas Team” after your name (e.g., correct usage examples would be El Paso Longhorns or El Paso Longhorns, A Special Olympics Texas Team).
    • Do not use the word “special” when talking about people with intellectual disabilities. The term is distancing and inappropriate and describes that which is different about any person.
    • If a team is its own 501(c)(3), it may NOT use the Special Olympics Texas name except to say "XYZ is an independent team that participates in Special Olympics Texas competitions."

    Photographic Representation

    Every athlete and volunteer who participates in Special Olympics gives his or her permission to be photographed and to have those photographs reproduced by Special Olympics in its promotional pieces. The permission is included on the Athlete Medical Form and the volunteer registration forms.

    The athlete wording is as follows: In permitting the athlete to participate, I am specifically granting permission to you to use the name, likeness, voice and words of the athlete in television, radio, films, newspapers, magazines, other media and in any form not heretofore described for the purpose of advertising or communicating the purposes and activities of Special Olympics and in appealing for funds to support such activities.

    The volunteer wording is as follows: As a volunteer member of Special Olympics Texas, I agree to grant Special Olympics permission to use my likeness, voice and words in television, radio, film or in any form to promote the activities of Special Olympics.

    Brand Identity

    Our brand is our reputation, a reputation shared by all of the programs within Special Olympics. This reputation exists in the hearts and minds of the public and our stakeholders. Our reputation is informed primarily by what we do but it is also influenced by what and how we communicate.

    Guidelines have been created to consolidate and strengthen the existing Special Olympics brand worldwide in line with the objectives of the Special Olympics strategic plan. The guidelines balance our collective need to achieve greater recognition through a unified approach with the individual need to create appropriate diversity for distinct audiences, territories and communication channels.

    Visual Identity

    This section of the SIG introduces you to the basic building blocks of our visual identity such as our mark, color and typography. By using this guide, we can create a consistent house style that is unified while having the flexibility to create diverse messages. Anything new that is printed with the SOTX logo must use the new logos.

    All previous versions of the logos, including those with the teal color, were to be completely phased out by the end of 2015.

    Use of the logo requires that you submit a Logo Usage Application for each use of the logo. Do not reproduce the logos in the SIG. A logo will be provided to you or your vendor electronically in the correct format upon approval of the application.

    Main Logo

    Logo - Print Layouts

    Two line Lock-Up

    (Standard Version: the best option for general use where space may be restricted.)

    Center Lock-Up

    Single Line Lock-Up

    Logo - Web/Online Layout

    The convention for websites and emails is that the symbol appears in the top left corner. This lock-up may also be used in situation where the mark must be placed on the left side of an item - e.g. Envelopes.

    Official Symbol

    The symbol is a universal element of the visual idenity and is used on all communications. The official symbol may only be used on its own if the full official logo also appears somewhere in the publication as well.

    Primary Color Palette

    Color Versions

    Two Color Versions
    Type in grey/symbol in red
    Type in black/symbol in red

    One Color Versions
    Grey (Pantone® 418)
    Red (Pantone® 186)
    Black
    White (on a dark background or approved photographic images)

    Typography

    Ubuntu is the preferred typeface of Special Olympics. It should be used for informational communications produced by Special Olympics. In the official logo, "Texas" appears in the Ubuntu Bold Italic.

    Ubuntu is a free font and may be downloaded online at font.ubuntu.com. There are several weights and variations available (light, Medium, Bold, Italic, etc.)

    Logo Usage Quick Guide

    1. Only use original artwork and standard colors. Use only official master artwork files, which can be requested from SOTX by using the Logo Usage Application. Do not photocopy, scan or attempt to redraw your own version of the mark. Color references: Use only the official colors listed above.
    2. Position the mark correctly. The standard position of the mark for print is in either the top right or bottom right corner. The symbol should sit equidistant from the nearest document edges. Consider the position of the mark relative to other elements and document edges and select the optimum lock-up option to suit.
    3. Give the mark room to breathe. Leave sufficient space around the mark so that it can be clearly recognized and is not encroached upon by any other elements. The general rule is that the minimum free space around the mark should be equal to the height of the ‘O’ in ‘Olympics’.
    4. Place the mark on an appropriate background. The mark should be placed on a background which does not interfere with recognition. When placing the two color version of the mark use a white background. When placing a single color version of the mark make sure to use a low contrast background and make sure there is appropriate contrast between the mark color and the background color.

    Team Shirts/Uniforms

    You must complete a Logo Usage Application for team shirts/uniforms, but the new branding guide is now allowing for more flexibility with the team logo.

    When creating team shirts/uniforms, a lock-up can be provided that gives primacy to the team name. This acknowledges the importance of local teams within Special Olympics and facilitates the creation of distinct team identities for games within a program. Teams are encouraged to use the layout/designs above.

    1. The name of the team has primacy on the shirt. The choice of typeface and design of this element is at the discretion of the team.
    2. SPECIAL OLYMPICS TEXAS is set in all capitals Ubuntu Bold as illustrated here. This element can be provided upon completion of the Logo Usage Application.
    3. The Special Olympics symbol is centered beneath the program name.
    4. It can be used in a shield format as an option.
    5. The Special Olympics Texas logo is shown in full elsewhere on the t-shirt when possible and/or when cost permits, to emphasize the unity of Special Olympics Texas as a whole.

    For all questions regarding team logos, please contact the Vice President of Communications at vp_pr.chp@sotx.org.

    Registered Trademark Policies

    The Special Olympics logo is the official trademark of the worldwide Special Olympics program. The logo is registered with the U.S. Patent Office and in many other countries around the world. Use of this logo may only be granted by Special Olympics, Inc. Headquarters, or its duly authorized agents. (Chapter Programs accredited by Special Olympics, Inc. Headquarters are considered authorized agents to authorize logo use within the geographic boundaries of their programs. Therefore, logo designs and uses must be approved by the chapter communications department. The application for logo usage is included in this section.)

    The trademark symbol ® on the logo must appear in a legible size, and in its proper position as shown on the following page. This is to protect the logo’s trademark registration and to prevent individuals and organizations from using it without the express permission of the Special Olympics organization.

    The Following are Registered Trademarks of Special Olympics

    • Special Olympics Symbol (single figure within logo)
    • Special Olympics Multiple Figure Symbol (critter ball, official logo)
    • International Law Enforcement Torch Run logo
    • A Very Special Christmas®
    • Be a fan™
    • Cops on Doughnut Shops®
    • Cops on Top®
    • Flame of Hope™
    • Global Law Enforcement Torch Run™
    • Guardians of the Flame™
    • Healthy Athletes®
    • Inspire Greatness®
    • Law Enforcement Torch Run®
    • Medfest®
    • Opening Eyes®
    • Partner’s Club®
    • Polar Plunge®
    • Plane Pull®
    • SO Get Into It®
    • Special Smiles®,
    • Team Advantage®
    • Tip A Cop®
    • Torch Run®
    • Truck Convoy®
    • Unified Sports®

    The “Olympic Rings” are five interconnected circles which form the official logo of the International Olympic Committee.

    The Olympic Rings may not be used in any way by any Special Olympics program.

    The usage is expressly forbidden under Special Olympics, Inc.’s agreement with the International Olympic Committee.

    Crisis Communications Plan

    This crisis communications plan provides Special Olympics Texas standards for communication within the organization and between the organization, the media and the public in the event of an emergency situation. The purpose of this plan is to give guidelines for communicating during an emergency that protect those involved as well as the organization. Special Olympics Texas has an excellent image in the community. It is the organization’s intent to protect and preserve that image along with the integrity of the movement during any emergency or crisis situation.

    Please familiarize yourself with the Crisis Communications Plan. Should an emergency, disaster or crisis occur during or associated with Special Olympics Texas, please take the following steps:

    1. Contact appropriate agencies; if there are health risks dial 911.
    2. Call the Special Olympics Texas crisis line at 800.685.2560 and notify your program/area director or development director
    3. Collect all available information. Do not speculate; factual information is what is needed at this point. Gather the facts, including statements from witnesses whenever possible.Collect names and addresses of everyone you speak with regarding the incident.
    4. The Special Olympics Texas Crisis Team will determine the next steps and delegate responsibilities to staff, volunteers, etc. The Crisis Team will work in conjunction with outside officials involved, such as the police department, emergency services, facility managers, sponsors, attorneys, etc.
    5. Do not speak to the media or issue any statements, formally or informally. Special Olympics Texas will have a single designated spokesperson. A spokesperson will be identified through the Crisis Team. All information will be funneled to the designated spokesperson and an official statement will be issued, if need be.
    6. Remember that everything counts. Nothing is “off the record.”
    7. Check and re-check all information for accuracy.
    8. Keep a daily detailed journal of events surrounding the crisis – who you talked to and what activities occurred.

    Defining the Crisis

    There are two major kinds of crisis, the sudden crisis, which we are all most familiar with, and the smoldering crisis.

    Sudden crisis situations could include:

    • Serious accidents involving athletes, volunteers and/or staff.
    • Natural disasters during an event.
    • Criminal actions taken by athletes, volunteers, spectators or staff.
    • Internal and external security threats.
    • Improper use of funding and gifts.
    • Any athlete missing (for more than two hours).

    Smoldering crisis situations could include:

    • Action by a disgruntled volunteer, spectator or staff.
    • Prior criminal activity by volunteers, staff and athletes.
    • Use of our name, logo and 501(c)(3) without our knowledge or incorrect usage.
    • Improper set-up at facilities for events.
    • Public perception.

    Smoldering crises are always in the air. It is the responsibility of all Special Olympics Texas staff to uphold the policies and procedures of the organization to help alleviate such situations. At all times, Special Olympics Texas staff and volunteers should be mindful of situations that could escalate, and address them with appropriate Crisis Communication Team members.


    Section V:
    Names and Addresses

    Area Training Directors

    Area 1

    Twinkle Morgan
    613 S. Excalibur St.
    Edinburg, TX 78539

    tmorgan@esc1.net

    361.537.2526

    Area 2

    Diana Garza
    1249 Tyler Avenue
    Corpus Christi, TX 78404

    drnana55@hotmail.com

    361.443.6586 Cell

    361.883.5423 Home

    Area 2

    Joseph Sanchez
    1837 Roslyn
    Corpus Christi, TX 78416

    joeginank@sbcglobal.net

    361.779.3582

    Area 4

    Barbara Kern
    P.O. Box 940651
    Houston, TX 77094

    bekern98@aol.com

    832.428.0818

    Area 5

    Nancy McLean
    95 Hendricks Drive
    Silsbee, TX 77656

    nancymclean1212@gmail.com

    Area 6

    David Kight
    24 Shady Oak Lane
    Conroe, TX 77304

    936.537.5010

    Area 7

    Chris Hoefer
    1109 Richey Drive
    Gladewater, TX 75647

    trainingdir07@yahoo.com

    903.845.5680

    Area 9

    Tricia Lee
    1722 Wilson Avenue
    Wichita Falls, TX 76301

    tricia.lee@esc9.net

    940.761.3179 Home

    940.733.7163 Cell

    Area 10

    Lisabeth Lassiter
    1204 Phillip Drive
    Allen, TX 75013

    dl_lassiter@hotmail.com

    972.741.3447

    Area 11

    Leslie Low
    605 Paisley Dr
    Flower Mound, TX 75028

    leslie.low@gcisd.net

    972.539.5452

    Area 12

    Rena Gibson
    4520 CR107
    Gatesvill, TX 76528

    msmuffin22@yahoo.com

    2548658271

    Area 13

    Debbie Legg
    18021 Misty Harbor Drive
    Pflugerville, TX 78660

    dlegg1@yahoo.com

    512.413.9581 Cell

    Area 14

    Cindy Bowman
    311 Yaw Road
    Abilene, TX 79604

    cindy.bowman@dads.state.tx.us

    325.795.3340

    Area 16

    J'Nette Thorne
    P.O. Box 51744
    Amarillo, TX 79159

    advo@suddenlinkmail.com

    806.654.5008

    Area 17

    George Ann Benson
    2608 Madison
    Lubbock, TX 79415

    bensonga@aol.com

    806.786.8015 Home

    Area 18

    Jami Martinez
    909 S Damascus Ave
    Odessa, TX 79763

    jamimrtnz@yahoo.com

    Area 19

    Patty Shingledecker
    7355 Prickley Pear
    El Paso, TX 79912

    pshing@aol.com

    915.873.6359 Cell

    915.842.0169 Home

    915.231.2680 Work

    Area 20

    Debra Blackwood
    1012 Canterbury Hill
    San Antonio, TX 78209

    dblackwood@saisd.net

    210.846.0355 Work

    Area 21

    Laura M. Rangel
    1302 Hunter's View
    Laredo, TX 78045

    laura.rangel13@yahoo.com

    956.319.0316

    Area 22

    Larry Lobue
    4619 Wolverhampton Way
    Missouri City, TX 77459

    LDLobue@aol.com

    281.499.4524 Home

    Chapter Headquarters

    1804 Rutherford Lane
    Austin, TX 78754

    800.876.5646

    Sport Directors

    Athletics/Track

    Paul Brockway
    908 Golden Aster Ct.
    Burleson, TX 76028

    pauldbrockway@sbcglobal.net

    682.472.6342 Cell

    Athletics/Field

    Missy Patterson
    7914 Coastway Drive
    Rowlett, TX 75088

    mmpatterson99@verizon.net

    972.567.9719 Cell

    Aquatics

    Bob Lang
    4149 Lomita Lane
    Dallas, TX 75220

    dogmatic.lang@gmail.com

    214.755.7981

    Basketball

    Nancy Walling

    nlwalling@gmail.com

    512.657.6755 Cell

    512.594.0552 Work

    Bocce

    Cathy Schreiber
    7622 Alcomita Drive
    Houston, TX 77083

    cathy.schreiber@aliefisd.net

    281.827.9494 Cell

    Bowling

    Keith Hass
    139 Mystic Parkway
    Spring Branch, TX 78070

    mailto:khass@gvtc.com

    Cycling

    Terry Cook
    161 East Overlook Mountain Road
    Buda, TX 78610

    terry@keasler.com

    512.632.1773 Cell

    Equestrian

    Karen Abbott
    24288 Spring Drive
    Hockley, TX 77447

    ktatherapy@sbcglobal.net

    281.734.8601 Cell

    Figure Skating/Speed Skating

    Marsha Brenneman
    207 Buck Bend
    Georgetown, TX 78628

    mrbrenneman1@mmm.com

    512.984.3744 Work

    Flag Football

    Chris Gormley
    Dept. of Recreational Sports
    800 W. Campell Road, AB10
    Richardson, TX 75080

    chris.gormley@utdallas.edu

    972.883.7457

    Golf

    Dennis Wyatt

    5501 Pebble Court
    McKinney, TX 75070

    dwyatt@mckinneyisd.net

    972.824.6884 Cell

    Gymnastics

    Amy Meyers
    130 Terrell Road #3
    San Antonio, TX 78209

    abgymnastics@yahoo.com

    Kayaking

    Bruce Litton
    17135 Ligustrum Trail
    Tomball, TX 77377

    b.litton@eartthlink.net

    832.431.6824 Cell

    Motor Activities Training

    Barbara Kielaszek
    6606 Barbarella Court
    Houston, TX 77088

    barbarakielaszek@gmail.com

    281.445.6951

    Powerlifting

    Christy Cordella
    313707 Cattail Park Court
    Conroe, TX 77385

    christynewman@hotmail.com

    281.785.6310

    Roller Skating

    TBD

    Sailing

    Steve Comen
    3509 Leighton Ridge Drive
    Plano, Texas 75025

    steve.comen@gmail.com

    214.417.3864 Cell

    Soccer

    Jesse McNeil
    9200 World Cup Way, Suite 202
    Frisco, TX 75033

    jmcneil@fcdallas.net

    214.532.2367 Cell

    Softball

    Al Macias
    4300 Newcastle Court
    Bryan, TX 77802

    trike1@suddenlink.net

    979.412.5771

    Tennis

    Cindy Benzon
    4008 Louetta Road, Apt. 234
    Spring, TX 77388

    benzon@texas.usta.com

    832.264.7773 Cell

    Triathlon

    TBD

    Table Tennis

    Debra Blackwood
    1012 Canterbury Hill
    San Antonio, TX 78209

    saraffie@aol.com

    210.846.0355 Cell

    Volleyball

    Kim McCorkle
    6009 Boyce
    Manor, TX 78653

    kmcco4@aol.com

    512.751.5846 Work

    National and International Governing Bodies

    The national and international governing bodies are listed below, with the international sports federations appearing first. Please contact the national governing bodies to obtain sports rule books for chapter competitions. Special Olympics Texas rules are based on the national governing body rules. At international-level competitions, however, athletes may come under rules given by the international sports foundations.

    Aquatics

    Fédération Internationale de Natation Amateur (FINA)
    Avenue de Beaumont 9
    Rez-de Chausee
    1012 Lausanne, Switzerland

    +41.21.310.4710

    www.fina.org

    USA Swimming Inc. (USAS)
    One Olympic Plaza
    Colorado Springs, CO 80909

    719.866.4578

    www.usaswimming.org

    Basketball

    Fédération Internationale de Basket-ball Amateur (FIBA)
    Avenue Louis Casai, 53
    1216 Cointrin
    Geneva, Switzerland

    +41.22.545.0000 Tel

    +41.22.545.0099

    FIBA.com

    National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS)
    P.O. Box 690
    Indianapolis, IN 46206

    317.972.6900 Tel

    317.822.5700 Fax

    NFHS.org

    Send written request - $5.00 per copy

    Bocce

    International Bocce Association, Inc.
    P.O. Box 170
    Utica, NY 13503

    315.733.9611 Tel

    iba@borg.com

    Bowling

    Federation Internationale des Quilleurs
    Kauriintie 4 v 165
    00740 Helsinki, Finland

    +358.0.346.2783

    United States Bowling Congress
    621 Six Flags Drive
    Arlington, TX 76011

    800.514.2695 Tel

    Cycling

    Union Cyclisle Internationale
    CH 1860 Aigle
    Switzerland

    +41.24.468.5811 Tel

    +41.24.468.5812

    USA Cycling, Inc.
    One Olympic Plaza
    Colorado Springs, CO 80909

    719.866.4581 Tel

    www.usacycling.org

    Equestrian

    Federation Equestre Internationale (FEI)
    Schosshaldenstrassee, 32
    Boite Postale 3000
    Berne 32, Switzerland

    American Horse Show Association (AHSA
    220 East 42nd, 409
    New York, NY 10017

    212.972.2472 Tel

    American Quarter Horse Association
    P.O. Box 200
    Amarillo, TX 79168

    806.376.4811 Tel

    Figure Skating and Speed Skating

    International Skating Union (ISU)
    Promenade 73
    7270 Davos-Platz, Switzerland

    United States Figure Skating Association (USFSA)
    20 First Street
    Colorado Springs, CO 80906

    719.635.5200 Tel

    usfsa@aol.com

    Golf

    Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St. Andrews (FIFE)
    United Kingdom KY169JD

    United States Golf Association (USGA)
    P.O. Box 708
    Far Hills, NJ 07931

    908.234.9687 Tel

    USGA.org

    Gymnastics

    Federal International de Gymnastique (FIG)
    Juraweg 12
    3250 Lyss, Switzerland

    USA Gymnastics
    201 South Capitol Ave., Ste 300
    Indianapolis, IN 46225

    317.237.5050 Questions

    800.345.4719 Ordering

    usagym.org

    Powerlifting

    Internationale Powerlifting Federation (IPF)
    Zeisgstrasse 34 D-8011
    Vaterseetten, Germany

    Roller Skating

    Fédération Internationale de Roller Sports
    P.O. Box 6579
    Lincoln, Nebraska 68506

    USA Roller Sports
    4730 South St. Lincoln, Nebraska 68506

    402.483.7551 Tel

    Sailing

    United States Sailing Association (U.S. Sailing)
    P.O. Box 1260 (15 Maritime Drive)
    Portsmouth, RI 02871-1260

    401.683.0800 Tel

    USsailing.org

    Soccer (Futbol)

    Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA)
    Case Postales 85
    8030 Zurich, Switzerland

    FIFA.com

    United States Soccer Federation (USSF)
    1801-1811 S. Prairie Ave
    Chicago, IL 60616

    312.808.1300 Tel

    USsoccer.com

    Softball

    Federation Internationale de Softball (FIS)
    P.O. Box 11437
    Oklahoma City, OK 73111

    Amateur Softball Association (ASA)
    2801 NE 50th Street
    Oklahoma City, OK 73111-7203

    405.424.5266 Tel

    teamUSA.org/USA-Softball

    Table Tennis

    International Table Tennis Federation (ITTF)
    53 London Road, Sussex
    TN376AY Great Britain
    St. Leonard’s-on-the-Sea

    ITTF.com

    United States Table Tennis
    One Olympic Plaza
    Colorado Springs, CO 80909-5762

    719.578.4583 Tel

    teamusa.org/USA-Table-Tennis

    Tennis

    Federation Internationale de Tennis (FIT)
    Palliser Road, Barons Court
    London W149 EN, Great Britain

    United States Tennis Association (USTA)
    70 West Red Oak Lane
    White Plains, NY 10604-3602

    914.696.7000

    USTA.com

    Track and Field (Athletics)

    International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF)
    3 Hans Crescent, Knightbridge
    London SWI OLN Great Britain

    USA Track & Field
    132 East Washington Street, Suite 800
    Indianapolis, IN 46204

    317.261.0500 Tel

    USATF.org

    Triathlon

    USA Triathlon
    616 W. Monument St. Colorado Springs, CO 80905

    719.597.9090 Tel

    719.597.2121 Fax

    info@USATriathlon.org

    teamusa.org/usa-triathlon

    Volleyball

    Fédération Internationale de Volleyball
    7 Place Chauderon
    1003 Lausanne, Switzerland

    United States Volleyball Association (USVBA)
    715 S. Circle Dr
    Colorado Springs, CO 80910

    719.228.6800

    teamusa.org/USA-Volleyball

    Areas Listed by Counties, Cities, and Zip Codes

    Area 1 Rio Grande Valley

    County City Zip
    Cameron Bayview 78566
    Cameron Brownsville 78520
    Cameron Brownsville 78521
    Cameron Brownsville 78526
    Cameron Brownsville 78522
    Cameron Brownsville 78523
    Cameron Combes 78535
    Cameron Harlingen 78550
    Cameron Harlingen 78552
    Cameron Harlingen 78551
    Cameron Harlingen 78553
    Cameron La Feria 78559
    Cameron Laguna Vista 78578
    Cameron Los Fresnos 78566
    Cameron Los Indios 78567
    Cameron Lozano 78568
    Cameron Olmito 78575
    Cameron Port Isabel 78578
    Cameron Rancho Viejo 78575
    Cameron Rio Hondo 78583
    Cameron San Benito 78586
    Cameron Santa Maria 78592
    Cameron Santa Rosa 78593
    Cameron South Padre Island 78597
    Hidalgo Alamo 78516
    Hidalgo Alton 78573
    Hidalgo Donna 78537
    Hidalgo Edcouch 78538
    Hidalgo Edinburg 78539
    Hidalgo Edinburg 78540
    Hidalgo Elsa 78543
    Hidalgo Hargill 78549
    Hidalgo Hidalgo 78557
    Hidalgo La Blanca 78558
    Hidalgo La Joya 78560
    Hidalgo La Villa 78562
    Hidalgo Linn 78563
    Hidalgo Los Ebanos 78565
    Hidalgo McAllen 78501
    Hidalgo McAllen 78503
    Hidalgo McAllen 78504
    Hidalgo McAllen 78502
    Hidalgo McAllen 78505
    Hidalgo Mercedes 78570
    Hidalgo Mission 78572
    Hidalgo Mission 78573
    Hidalgo Monte Alto 78538
    Hidalgo Palmhurst 78572
    Hidalgo Palmhurst 78573
    Hidalgo Palmview 78572
    Hidalgo Penitas 78576
    Hidalgo Pharr 78577
    Hidalgo Progreso 78579
    Hidalgo Progreso Lakes 78596
    Hidalgo San Juan 78589
    Hidalgo Sullivan City 78595
    Hidalgo Weslaco 78596
    Hidalgo Weslaco 78599
    Starr Delmita 78536
    Starr Falcon Heights 78545
    Starr Garciasville 78547
    Starr Grulla 78548
    Starr Rio Grande City 78582
    Starr Roma 78584
    Starr Salineno 78585
    Starr San Isidro 78588
    Starr Santa Elena 78591
    Willacy Lasara 78561
    Willacy Lyford 78569
    Willacy Port Mansfield 78598
    Willacy Raymondville 78580
    Willacy Raymondville 78598
    Willacy San Perlita 78590
    Willacy Sebastian 78594

    Back To Top

    Area 2 South Texas

    County City Zip
    Aransas Fulton 78358
    Aransas Rockport 78382
    Aransas Rockport 78381
    Bee Beeville 78102
    Bee Beeville 78104
    Bee Kenedy 78119
    Bee Kenedy 78125
    Bee Mineral 78125
    Bee Normanna 78142
    Bee Pawnee 78145
    Bee Pettus 78146
    Bee Skidmore 78389
    Bee Tuleta 78162
    Bee Tynan 78391
    Brooks Encino 78353
    Brooks Falfurrias 78355
    Calhoun Long Mott 77979
    Calhoun Point Comfort 77978
    Calhoun Port Lavaca 77979
    Calhoun Port O'Connor 77982
    Calhoun Seadrift 77983
    Duval Benavides 78341
    Duval Concepcion 78349
    Duval Freer 78357
    Duval Realitos 78376
    Duval San Diego 78384
    Goliad Berclair 78107
    Goliad Fannin 77960
    Goliad Goliad 77963
    Goliad Weesatche 77993
    Jim Wells Alice 78332
    Jim Wells Alice 78342
    Jim Wells Alice 78333
    Jim Wells Ben Bolt 78342
    Jim Wells Orange Grove 78372
    Jim Wells Premont 78375
    Jim Wells Sandia 78383
    Karnes Ecleto 78111
    Karnes Falls City 78113
    Karnes Gillett 78111
    Karnes Gillett 78116
    Karnes Hobson 78117
    Karnes Karnes City 78118
    Karnes McCoy 78053
    Karnes McCoy 78113
    Karnes Panna Maria 78144
    Karnes Runge 78151
    Kenedy Armstrong 78338
    Kenedy Sarita 78385
    Kleberg Kingsville 78363
    Kleberg Kingsville 78364
    Kleberg Kingsville Naval ASCS 78363
    Kleberg Riviera 78379
    Live Oak Dinero 78350
    Live Oak George West 78022
    Live Oak Oakville 78060
    Live Oak Three Rivers 78071
    Live Oak Whitsett 78075
    McMullen Calliham 78007
    McMullen Tilden 78072
    Nueces Agua Dulce 78330
    Nueces Banquete 78339
    Nueces Bishop 78343
    Nueces Chapman Ranch 78347
    Nueces Corpus Christi 78401
    Nueces Corpus Christi 78402
    Nueces Corpus Christi 78404
    Nueces Corpus Christi 78405
    Nueces Corpus Christi 78406
    Nueces Corpus Christi 78407
    Nueces Corpus Christi 78408
    Nueces Corpus Christi 78409
    Nueces Corpus Christi 78410
    Nueces Corpus Christi 78411
    Nueces Corpus Christi 78412
    Nueces Corpus Christi 78413
    Nueces Corpus Christi 78414
    Nueces Corpus Christi 78415
    Nueces Corpus Christi 78416
    Nueces Corpus Christi 78417
    Nueces Corpus Christi 78418
    Nueces Corpus Christi 78419
    Nueces Corpus Christi 78461
    Nueces Corpus Christi 78470
    Nueces Corpus Christi 78471
    Nueces Corpus Christi 78473
    Nueces Corpus Christi 78474
    Nueces Corpus Christi 78475
    Nueces Corpus Christi 78476
    Nueces Corpus Christi 78477
    Nueces Corpus Christi 78478
    Nueces Corpus Christi 78403
    Nueces Corpus Christi 78426
    Nueces Corpus Christi 78427
    Nueces Corpus Christi 78460
    Nueces Corpus Christi 78463
    Nueces Corpus Christi 78465
    Nueces Corpus Christi 78466
    Nueces Corpus Christi 78467
    Nueces Corpus Christi 78468
    Nueces Corpus Christi 78469
    Nueces Corpus Christi 78472
    Nueces Corpus Christi 78480
    Nueces Driscoll 78351
    Nueces Port Aransas 78373
    Nueces Robstown 78380
    Refugio Austwell 77950
    Refugio Bayside 78340
    Refugio Refugio 78377
    Refugio Tivoli 77990
    Refugio Woodsboro 78393
    San Patricio Aransas Pass 78336
    San Patricio Aransas Pass 78335
    San Patricio City By The Sea 78336
    San Patricio Edroy 78352
    San Patricio Gregory 78359
    San Patricio Ingleside 78362
    San Patricio Lake City 78368
    San Patricio Mathis 78368
    San Patricio Odem 78370
    San Patricio Portland 78374
    San Patricio Sinton 78387
    San Patricio Swinney Switch 78368
    San Patricio Taft 78390
    Victoria Bloomington 77951
    Victoria Inez 77968
    Victoria McFaddin 77973
    Victoria Nursery 77976
    Victoria Placedo 77977
    Victoria Raisin 77905
    Victoria Telferner 77988
    Victoria Victoria 77901
    Victoria Victoria 77904
    Victoria Victoria 77905
    Victoria Victoria 77902
    Victoria Victoria 77903

    Back To Top

    Area 4 Greater Houston

    County City Zip
    Harris Alief 77411
    Harris Atascocita 77346
    Harris Barker 77413
    Harris Baytown 77520
    Harris Baytown 77521
    Harris Baytown 77522
    Harris Beach City 77520
    Harris Bellaire 77401
    Harris Bellaire 77402
    Harris Channelview 77530
    Harris Clutch City 77002
    Harris Crosby 77532
    Harris Cypress 77429
    Harris Cypress 77433
    Harris Cypress 77410
    Harris Deer Park 77536
    Harris El Lago 77586
    Harris Galena Park 77547
    Harris Highlands 77562
    Harris Hockley 77447
    Harris Houston 77002
    Harris Houston 77003
    Harris Houston 77004
    Harris Houston 77005
    Harris Houston 77006
    Harris Houston 77007
    Harris Houston 77008
    Harris Houston 77009
    Harris Houston 77010
    Harris Houston 77011
    Harris Houston 77012
    Harris Houston 77013
    Harris Houston 77014
    Harris Houston 77015
    Harris Houston 77016
    Harris Houston 77017
    Harris Houston 77018
    Harris Houston 77019
    Harris Houston 77020
    Harris Houston 77021
    Harris Houston 77022
    Harris Houston 77023
    Harris Houston 77024
    Harris Houston 77025
    Harris Houston 77026
    Harris Houston 77027
    Harris Houston 77028
    Harris Houston 77029
    Harris Houston 77030
    Harris Houston 77031
    Harris Houston 77032
    Harris Houston 77033
    Harris Houston 77034
    Harris Houston 77035
    Harris Houston 77036
    Harris Houston 77037
    Harris Houston 77038
    Harris Houston 77039
    Harris Houston 77040
    Harris Houston 77041
    Harris Houston 77042
    Harris Houston 77043
    Harris Houston 77044
    Harris Houston 77045
    Harris Houston 77046
    Harris Houston 77047
    Harris Houston 77048
    Harris Houston 77049
    Harris Houston 77050
    Harris Houston 77051
    Harris Houston 77053
    Harris Houston 77054
    Harris Houston 77055
    Harris Houston 77056
    Harris Houston 77057
    Harris Houston 77058
    Harris Houston 77059
    Harris Houston 77060
    Harris Houston 77061
    Harris Houston 77062
    Harris Houston 77063
    Harris Houston 77064
    Harris Houston 77065
    Harris Houston 77066
    Harris Houston 77067
    Harris Houston 77068
    Harris Houston 77069
    Harris Houston 77070
    Harris Houston 77071
    Harris Houston 77072
    Harris Houston 77073
    Harris Houston 77074
    Harris Houston 77075
    Harris Houston 77076
    Harris Houston 77077
    Harris Houston 77078
    Harris Houston 77079
    Harris Houston 77080
    Harris Houston 77081
    Harris Houston 77082
    Harris Houston 77083
    Harris Houston 77084
    Harris Houston 77085
    Harris Houston 77086
    Harris Houston 77087
    Harris Houston 77088
    Harris Houston 77089
    Harris Houston 77090
    Harris Houston 77091
    Harris Houston 77092
    Harris Houston 77093
    Harris Houston 77094
    Harris Houston 77095
    Harris Houston 77096
    Harris Houston 77097
    Harris Houston 77098
    Harris Houston 77099
    Harris Houston 77201
    Harris Houston 77204
    Harris Houston 77209
    Harris Houston 77212
    Harris Houston 77216
    Harris Houston 77297
    Harris Houston 77298
    Harris Houston 77299
    Harris Houston 77598
    Harris Houston 77001
    Harris Houston 77052
    Harris Houston 77202
    Harris Houston 77203
    Harris Houston 77205
    Harris Houston 77206
    Harris Houston 77207
    Harris Houston 77208
    Harris Houston 77210
    Harris Houston 77213
    Harris Houston 77215
    Harris Houston 77217
    Harris Houston 77218
    Harris Houston 77219
    Harris Houston 77220
    Harris Houston 77221
    Harris Houston 77222
    Harris Houston 77223
    Harris Houston 77224
    Harris Houston 77225
    Harris Houston 77226
    Harris Houston 77227
    Harris Houston 77228
    Harris Houston 77229
    Harris Houston 77230
    Harris Houston 77231
    Harris Houston 77233
    Harris Houston 77234
    Harris Houston 77235
    Harris Houston 77236
    Harris Houston 77237
    Harris Houston 77238
    Harris Houston 77240
    Harris Houston 77241
    Harris Houston 77242
    Harris Houston 77243
    Harris Houston 77244
    Harris Houston 77245
    Harris Houston 77246
    Harris Houston 77247
    Harris Houston 77248
    Harris Houston 77249
    Harris Houston 77250
    Harris Houston 77251
    Harris Houston 77252
    Harris Houston 77253
    Harris Houston 77254
    Harris Houston 77255
    Harris Houston 77256
    Harris Houston 77257
    Harris Houston 77258
    Harris Houston 77259
    Harris Houston 77260
    Harris Houston 77261
    Harris Houston 77262
    Harris Houston 77263
    Harris Houston 77265
    Harris Houston 77266
    Harris Houston 77267
    Harris Houston 77268
    Harris Houston 77269
    Harris Houston 77270
    Harris Houston 77271
    Harris Houston 77272
    Harris Houston 77273
    Harris Houston 77274
    Harris Houston 77275
    Harris Houston 77276
    Harris Houston 77277
    Harris Houston 77278
    Harris Houston 77279
    Harris Houston 77280
    Harris Houston 77282
    Harris Houston 77284
    Harris Houston 77285
    Harris Houston 77286
    Harris Houston 77287
    Harris Houston 77288
    Harris Houston 77289
    Harris Houston 77290
    Harris Houston 77291
    Harris Houston 77292
    Harris Houston 77293
    Harris Houston 77294
    Harris Houston 77296
    Harris Huffman 77336
    Harris Hufsmith 77337
    Harris Humble 77325
    Harris Humble 77338
    Harris Humble 77339
    Harris Humble 77345
    Harris Humble 77346
    Harris Humble 77396
    Harris Humble 77347
    Harris Jersey Village 77040
    Harris Jersey Village 77041
    Harris Jersey Village 77065
    Harris Katy 77449
    Harris Katy 77450
    Harris Katy 77493
    Harris Katy 77494
    Harris Katy 77491
    Harris Katy 77492
    Harris Kingwood 77339
    Harris Kingwood 77345
    Harris Kingwood 77346
    Harris Kingwood 77325
    Harris Klein 77379
    Harris Klein 77389
    Harris Klein 77391
    Harris Morgan's Point 77571
    Harris North Houston 77315
    Harris Park Row 77449
    Harris Park Row 77450
    Harris Park Row 77491
    Harris Park Row 77493
    Harris Park Row 77494
    Harris Pasadena 77502
    Harris Pasadena 77503
    Harris Pasadena 77504
    Harris Pasadena 77505
    Harris Pasadena 77506
    Harris Pasadena 77507
    Harris Pasadena 77501
    Harris Pasadena 77508
    Harris Seabrook 77586
    Harris Shoreacres 77571
    Harris South Houston 77587
    Harris Spring 77373
    Harris Spring 77379
    Harris Spring 77380
    Harris Spring 77381
    Harris Spring 77382
    Harris Spring 77386
    Harris Spring 77388
    Harris Spring 77389
    Harris Spring 77383
    Harris Spring 77387
    Harris Spring 77391
    Harris Spring 77393
    Harris Taylor Lake Village 77586
    Harris Tomball 77337
    Harris Tomball 77375
    Harris Tomball 77377
    Harris VA Hospital 77030
    Harris Webster 77598
    Harris West University Place 77005
    Liberty Ames 77575
    Liberty Cleveland 77327
    Liberty Cleveland 77328
    Liberty Daisetta 77533
    Liberty Dayton 77535
    Liberty Devers 77538
    Liberty Hardin 77561
    Liberty Hull 77564
    Liberty Liberty 77575
    Liberty Raywood 77582
    Liberty Romayor 77368
    Liberty Rye 77369
    Waller Brookshire 77423
    Waller Hempstead 77445
    Waller Pattison 77423
    Waller Pattison 77466
    Waller Prairie View 77446
    Waller Waller 77484

    Back To Top

    Area 5 Beaumont

    County City Zip
    Chambers Anahuac 77514
    Chambers Hankamer 77560
    Chambers Monroe City 77514
    Chambers Mont Belvieu 77580
    Chambers Stowell 77661
    Chambers Wallisville 77597
    Chambers Winnie 77665
    Hardin Batson 77519
    Hardin Kountze 77625
    Hardin Lumberton 77657
    Hardin Saratoga 77585
    Hardin Silsbee 77656
    Hardin Sour Lake 77659
    Hardin Thicket 77374
    Hardin Village Mills 77663
    Hardin Votaw 77376
    Jasper Bon Ami 75956
    Jasper Buna 77612
    Jasper Evadale 77615
    Jasper Jasper 75951
    Jasper Kirbyville 75956
    Jasper Magnolia Springs 75956
    Jasper Roganville 75956
    Jefferson Beaumont 77701
    Jefferson Beaumont 77703
    Jefferson Beaumont 77705
    Jefferson Beaumont 77706
    Jefferson Beaumont 77707
    Jefferson Beaumont 77708
    Jefferson Beaumont 77713
    Jefferson Beaumont 77704
    Jefferson Beaumont 77709
    Jefferson Beaumont 77710
    Jefferson Beaumont 77720
    Jefferson Beaumont 77725
    Jefferson Beaumont 77726
    Jefferson China 77613
    Jefferson Groves 77619
    Jefferson Hamshire 77622
    Jefferson Nederland 77627
    Jefferson Nome 77629
    Jefferson Port Acres 77640
    Jefferson Port Arthur 77640
    Jefferson Port Arthur 77642
    Jefferson Port Arthur 77641
    Jefferson Port Arthur 77643
    Jefferson Port Neches 77651
    Jefferson Sabine Pass 77655
    Newton Bon Wier 75928
    Newton Burkeville 75932
    Newton Call 75933
    Newton Deweyville 77614
    Newton Newton 75966
    Newton Wiergate 75977
    Orange Bridge City 77611
    Orange Mauriceville 77626
    Orange Orange 77630
    Orange Orange 77632
    Orange Orange 77631
    Orange Orangefield 77639
    Orange Vidor 77662
    Orange Vidor 77670
    Orange West Orange 77630
    Tyler Chester 75936
    Tyler Colmesneil 75938
    Tyler Dogwood 75979
    Tyler Doucette 75942
    Tyler Fred 77616
    Tyler Hillister 77624
    Tyler Rockland 75938
    Tyler Spurger 77660
    Tyler Warren 77664
    Tyler Woodville 75979
    Tyler Woodville 75990

    Back To Top

    Area 6 Heart of East Texas

    County City Zip
    Austin Bellville 77418
    Austin Bleiblerville 78931
    Austin Cat Spring 78933
    Austin Industry 78944
    Austin Kenney 77452
    Austin New Ulm 78950
    Austin San Felipe 77473
    Austin Sealy 77474
    Austin Wallis 77485
    Brazos Bryan 77801
    Brazos Bryan 77802
    Brazos Bryan 77803
    Brazos Bryan 77807
    Brazos Bryan 77808
    Brazos Bryan 77805
    Brazos Bryan 77806
    Brazos College Station 77840
    Brazos College Station 77843
    Brazos College Station 77845
    Brazos College Station 77841
    Brazos College Station 77842
    Brazos College Station 77844
    Brazos Kurten 77862
    Brazos Millican 77866
    Brazos Wellborn 77881
    Burleson Caldwell 77836
    Burleson Chriesman 77838
    Burleson Deanville 77852
    Burleson Lyons 77863
    Burleson Snook 77878
    Burleson Somerville 77879
    Grimes Anderson 77830
    Grimes Anderson 77875
    Grimes Bedias 77831
    Grimes Iola 77861
    Grimes Navasota 77868
    Grimes Navasota 77869
    Grimes Plantersville 77363
    Grimes Richards 77873
    Grimes Roans Prairie 77875
    Grimes Shiro 77876
    Grimes Singleton 77831
    Houston Crockett 75835
    Houston Grapeland 75844
    Houston Kennard 75847
    Houston Latexo 75849
    Houston Lovelady 75851
    Houston Ratcliff 75858
    Leon Buffalo 75831
    Leon Centerville 75833
    Leon Concord 77850
    Leon Flynn 77855
    Leon Hilltop Lakes 77871
    Leon Jewett 75846
    Leon Keechi 75831
    Leon Marquez 77865
    Leon Normangee 77871
    Leon Oakwood 75855
    Madison Leona 75850
    Madison Madisonville 77864
    Madison Midway 75850
    Madison Midway 75852
    Madison North Zulch 77872
    Milam Ben Arnold 76519
    Milam Buckholts 76518
    Milam Burlington 76519
    Milam Cameron 76520
    Milam Davilla 76523
    Milam Gause 77857
    Milam Maysfield 76520
    Milam Milano 76556
    Milam Rockdale 76567
    Milam Thorndale 76577
    Montgomery Conroe 77301
    Montgomery Conroe 77302
    Montgomery Conroe 77303
    Montgomery Conroe 77304
    Montgomery Conroe 77306
    Montgomery Conroe 77384
    Montgomery Conroe 77385
    Montgomery Conroe 77305
    Montgomery Cut and Shoot 77303
    Montgomery Cut and Shoot 77306
    Montgomery Dobbin 77333
    Montgomery Grangerland 77302
    Montgomery Magnolia 77354
    Montgomery Magnolia 77355
    Montgomery Magnolia 77353
    Montgomery Montgomery 77316
    Montgomery Montgomery 77356
    Montgomery Panorama Village 77304
    Montgomery Patton 77372
    Montgomery Pinehurst 77362
    Montgomery Porter 77365
    Montgomery Splendora 77372
    Montgomery The Woodlands 77380
    Montgomery The Woodlands 77381
    Montgomery The Woodlands 77384
    Montgomery The Woodlands 77385
    Montgomery The Woodlands 77386
    Montgomery The Woodlands 77387
    Montgomery The Woodlands 77393
    Montgomery Willis 77318
    Montgomery Willis 77378
    Polk Ace 77326
    Polk Barnum 75939
    Polk Camden 75934
    Polk Corrigan 75939
    Polk Dallardsville 77332
    Polk Escapees RV Club 77399
    Polk Goodrich 77335
    Polk Leggett 77350
    Polk Livingston 77351
    Polk Livingston 77399
    Polk Moscow 75960
    Polk Onalaska 77360
    Polk Segno 77351
    Robertson Bremond 76629
    Robertson Calvert 77837
    Robertson Franklin 77856
    Robertson Hearne 77859
    Robertson Mumford 77867
    Robertson New Baden 77870
    Robertson Ridge 77856
    Robertson Wheelock 77882
    San Jacinto Coldspring 77331
    San Jacinto Oakhurst 77359
    San Jacinto Point Blank 77364
    San Jacinto Shepherd 77371
    Trinity Apple Springs 75926
    Trinity Centralia 75834
    Trinity Groveton 75845
    Trinity Pennington 75856
    Trinity Trinity 75862
    Trinity Woodlake 75865
    Walker Dodge 77334
    Walker Huntsville 77320
    Walker Huntsville 77340
    Walker Huntsville 77343
    Walker Huntsville 77344
    Walker Huntsville 77348
    Walker Huntsville 77349
    Walker Huntsville 77341
    Walker Huntsville 77342
    Walker New Waverly 77358
    Walker Riverside 77367
    Washington Brenham 77833
    Washington Brenham 77834
    Washington Burton 77835
    Washington Chappell Hill 77426
    Washington Washington 77880

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    Area 7 East Texas

    County City Zip
    Anderson Cayuga 75832
    Anderson Elkhart 75839
    Anderson Frankston 75763
    Anderson Montalba 75853
    Anderson Neches 75779
    Anderson Palestine 75801
    Anderson Palestine 75803
    Anderson Palestine 75882
    Anderson Palestine 75802
    Anderson Slocum 75839
    Anderson Tennessee Colony 75861
    Anderson Tennessee Colony 75880
    Anderson Tennessee Colony 75884
    Anderson Tennessee Colony 75886
    Angelina Diboll 75941
    Angelina Huntington 75949
    Angelina Lufkin 75901
    Angelina Lufkin 75904
    Angelina Lufkin 75902
    Angelina Lufkin 75903
    Angelina Lufkin 75915
    Angelina Pollok 75969
    Angelina Zavalla 75980
    Cherokee Alto 75925
    Cherokee Cuney 75759
    Cherokee Dialville 75785
    Cherokee Forest 75925
    Cherokee Gallatin 75764
    Cherokee Jacksonville 75766
    Cherokee Maydelle 75772
    Cherokee New Summerfield 75780
    Cherokee Reklaw 75784
    Cherokee Rusk 75785
    Cherokee Wells 75976
    Gregg Clarksville City 75693
    Gregg Easton 75641
    Gregg Gladewater 75647
    Gregg Judson 75660
    Gregg Kilgore 75662
    Gregg Kilgore 75663
    Gregg Longview 75601
    Gregg Longview 75602
    Gregg Longview 75603
    Gregg Longview 75604
    Gregg Longview 75605
    Gregg Longview 75606
    Gregg Longview 75607
    Gregg Longview 75608
    Gregg Longview 75615
    Gregg White Oak 75693
    Harrison Elysian Fields 75642
    Harrison Hallsville 75650
    Harrison Harleton 75651
    Harrison Jonesville 75659
    Harrison Karnack 75661
    Harrison Marshall 75670
    Harrison Marshall 75672
    Harrison Marshall 75671
    Harrison Scottsville 75688
    Harrison Waskom 75692
    Harrison Woodlawn 75694
    Henderson Athens 75751
    Henderson Athens 75752
    Henderson Brownsboro 75756
    Henderson Chandler 75758
    Henderson Eustace 75124
    Henderson Larue 75770
    Henderson Log Cabin 75148
    Henderson Malakoff 75148
    Henderson Murchison 75778
    Henderson Poynor 75782
    Henderson Trinidad 75163
    Marion Jefferson 75657
    Marion Lodi 75564
    Marion Smithland 75657
    Nacogdoches Chireno 75937
    Nacogdoches Cushing 75760
    Nacogdoches Douglass 75943
    Nacogdoches Etoile 75944
    Nacogdoches Garrison 75946
    Nacogdoches Martinsville 75958
    Nacogdoches Nacogdoches 75961
    Nacogdoches Nacogdoches 75962
    Nacogdoches Nacogdoches 75964
    Nacogdoches Nacogdoches 75965
    Nacogdoches Nacogdoches 75963
    Nacogdoches Sacul 75788
    Nacogdoches Woden 75978
    Panola Beckville 75631
    Panola Carthage 75633
    Panola Clayton 75637
    Panola De Berry 75639
    Panola Gary 75643
    Panola Long Branch 75669
    Panola Panola 75685
    Rains Emory 75440
    Rains Point 75472
    Rusk Henderson 75652
    Rusk Henderson 75654
    Rusk Henderson 75680
    Rusk Henderson 75653
    Rusk Joinerville 75658
    Rusk Laird Hill 75666
    Rusk Laneville 75667
    Rusk Minden 75680
    Rusk Mount Enterprise 75681
    Rusk New London 75682
    Rusk Overton 75684
    Rusk Price 75687
    Rusk Selman City 75689
    Rusk Tatum 75691
    Rusk Turnertown 75689
    Sabine Bronson 75930
    Sabine Brookeland 75931
    Sabine Geneva 75959
    Sabine Hemphill 75948
    Sabine Milam 75959
    Sabine Pineland 75968
    San Augustine Broaddus 75929
    San Augustine San Augustine 75972
    Shelby Center 75935
    Shelby Joaquin 75954
    Shelby Shelbyville 75973
    Shelby Tenaha 75974
    Shelby Timpson 75975
    Smith Arp 75750
    Smith Bullard 75757
    Smith Flint 75762
    Smith Garden Valley 75771
    Smith Hideaway 75771
    Smith Lindale 75771
    Smith Mount Selman 75757
    Smith Mount Sylvan 75771
    Smith Troup 75789
    Smith Tyler 75701
    Smith Tyler 75702
    Smith Tyler 75703
    Smith Tyler 75704
    Smith Tyler 75705
    Smith Tyler 75706
    Smith Tyler 75707
    Smith Tyler 75708
    Smith Tyler 75709
    Smith Tyler 75798
    Smith Tyler 75799
    Smith Tyler 75710
    Smith Tyler 75711
    Smith Tyler 75712
    Smith Tyler 75713
    Smith Whitehouse 75791
    Smith Winona 75792
    Upshur Big Sandy 75755
    Upshur Big Sandy 75797
    Upshur Diana 75640
    Upshur Gilmer 75644
    Upshur Gilmer 75645
    Upshur Hawkins 75765
    Upshur Holly Lake Ranch 75755
    Upshur Holly Lake Ranch 75765
    Upshur New Diana 75640
    Upshur Ore City 75683
    Van Zandt Ben Wheeler 75754
    Van Zandt Canton 75103
    Van Zandt Edgewood 75117
    Van Zandt Fruitvale 75127
    Van Zandt Grand Saline 75140
    Van Zandt Van 75790
    Van Zandt Wills Point 75169
    Wood Alba 75410
    Wood Golden 75444
    Wood Mineola 75773
    Wood Quitman 75783
    Wood Winnsboro 75494
    Wood Yantis 75497

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    Area 9 North Texas

    County City Zip
    Archer Archer City 76351
    Archer Holliday 76366
    Archer Megargel 76370
    Archer Scotland 76379
    Archer Windthorst 76389
    Baylor Seymour 76380
    Clay Bellevue 76228
    Clay Bluegrove 76352
    Clay Byers 76357
    Clay Henrietta 76365
    Clay Petrolia 76377
    Foard Crowell 79227
    Foard Truscott 79227
    Hardeman Chillicothe 79225
    Hardeman Quanah 79252
    Jack Bryson 76427
    Jack Jacksboro 76458
    Jack Jermyn 76459
    Jack Perrin 76486
    Knox Benjamin 79505
    Knox Goree 76363
    Knox Knox City 79529
    Knox Munday 76371
    Montague Bowie 76230
    Montague Forestburg 76239
    Montague Montague 76251
    Montague Nocona 76255
    Montague Ringgold 76261
    Montague Saint Jo 76265
    Montague Sunset 76270
    Throckmorton Throckmorton 76483
    Throckmorton Woodson 76491
    Wichita Burkburnett 76354
    Wichita Electra 76360
    Wichita Iowa Park 76367
    Wichita Kamay 76369
    Wichita Sheppard Air Force Base 76311
    Wichita Wichita Falls 76301
    Wichita Wichita Falls 76302
    Wichita Wichita Falls 76305
    Wichita Wichita Falls 76306
    Wichita Wichita Falls 76308
    Wichita Wichita Falls 76309
    Wichita Wichita Falls 76310
    Wichita Wichita Falls 76307
    Wilbarger Harrold 76364
    Wilbarger Odell 79247
    Wilbarger Oklaunion 76373
    Wilbarger Vernon 76384
    Wilbarger Vernon 76385
    Young Elbert 76372
    Young Eliasville 76481
    Young Graham 76450
    Young Loving 76460
    Young Newcastle 76372
    Young Olney 76374
    Young South Bend 76481

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    Area 10 Greater Dallas

    County City Zip
    Bowie Boston 75570
    Bowie De Kalb 75559
    Bowie Hooks 75561
    Bowie Leary 75561
    Bowie Maud 75567
    Bowie Nash 75569
    Bowie New Boston 75570
    Bowie Redwater 75573
    Bowie Simms 75574
    Bowie South Texarkana 75501
    Bowie Texarkana 75501
    Bowie Texarkana 75503
    Bowie Texarkana 75505
    Bowie Texarkana 75507
    Bowie Texarkana 75599
    Bowie Texarkana 75504
    Bowie Wake Village 75501
    Camp Leesburg 75451
    Camp Pittsburg 75686
    Cass Atlanta 75551
    Cass Avinger 75630
    Cass Bivins 75555
    Cass Bloomburg 75556
    Cass Douglassville 75560
    Cass Hughes Springs 75656
    Cass Kildare 75562
    Cass Linden 75563
    Cass Marietta 75566
    Cass McLeod 75565
    Cass Queen City 75572
    Collin Allen 75002
    Collin Allen 75013
    Collin Anna 75409
    Collin Blue Ridge 75424
    Collin Celina 75009
    Collin Copeville 75121
    Collin Fairview 75069
    Collin Farmersville 75442
    Collin Frisco 75034
    Collin Frisco 75035
    Collin Josephine 75164
    Collin Lavon 75166
    Collin McKinney 75069
    Collin McKinney 75070
    Collin McKinney 75071
    Collin Melissa 75454
    Collin Murphy 75094
    Collin Nevada 75173
    Collin Plano 75023
    Collin Plano 75024
    Collin Plano 75025
    Collin Plano 75074
    Collin Plano 75075
    Collin Plano 75093
    Collin Plano 75094
    Collin Plano 75026
    Collin Plano 75086
    Collin Princeton 75407
    Collin Prosper 75078
    Collin St. Paul 75098
    Collin Westminster 75485
    Collin Weston 75097
    Collin Wylie 75098
    Dallas Addison 75001
    Dallas Balch Springs 75180
    Dallas Carrollton 75006
    Dallas Carrollton 75007
    Dallas Carrollton 75010
    Dallas Carrollton 75011
    Dallas Cedar Hill 75104
    Dallas Cedar Hill 75106
    Dallas Combine 75159
    Dallas Coppell 75019
    Dallas Coppell 75099
    Dallas Dallas 75201
    Dallas Dallas 75202
    Dallas Dallas 75203
    Dallas Dallas 75204
    Dallas Dallas 75205
    Dallas Dallas 75206
    Dallas Dallas 75207
    Dallas Dallas 75208
    Dallas Dallas 75209
    Dallas Dallas 75210
    Dallas Dallas 75211
    Dallas Dallas 75212
    Dallas Dallas 75214
    Dallas Dallas 75215
    Dallas Dallas 75216
    Dallas Dallas 75217
    Dallas Dallas 75218
    Dallas Dallas 75219
    Dallas Dallas 75220
    Dallas Dallas 75223
    Dallas Dallas 75224
    Dallas Dallas 75225
    Dallas Dallas 75226
    Dallas Dallas 75227
    Dallas Dallas 75228
    Dallas Dallas 75229
    Dallas Dallas 75230
    Dallas Dallas 75231
    Dallas Dallas 75232
    Dallas Dallas 75233
    Dallas Dallas 75234
    Dallas Dallas 75235
    Dallas Dallas 75236
    Dallas Dallas 75237
    Dallas Dallas 75238
    Dallas Dallas 75240
    Dallas Dallas 75241
    Dallas Dallas 75242
    Dallas Dallas 75243
    Dallas Dallas 75244
    Dallas Dallas 75246
    Dallas Dallas 75247
    Dallas Dallas 75248
    Dallas Dallas 75249
    Dallas Dallas 75251
    Dallas Dallas 75252
    Dallas Dallas 75253
    Dallas Dallas 75254
    Dallas Dallas 75258
    Dallas Dallas 75260
    Dallas Dallas 75270
    Dallas Dallas 75275
    Dallas Dallas 75277
    Dallas Dallas 75283
    Dallas Dallas 75284
    Dallas Dallas 75285
    Dallas Dallas 75286
    Dallas Dallas 75287
    Dallas Dallas 75301
    Dallas Dallas 75303
    Dallas Dallas 75310
    Dallas Dallas 75312
    Dallas Dallas 75320
    Dallas Dallas 75323
    Dallas Dallas 75326
    Dallas Dallas 75342
    Dallas Dallas 75353
    Dallas Dallas 75358
    Dallas Dallas 75363
    Dallas Dallas 75364
    Dallas Dallas 75368
    Dallas Dallas 75373
    Dallas Dallas 75386
    Dallas Dallas 75387
    Dallas Dallas 75388
    Dallas Dallas 75389
    Dallas Dallas 75390
    Dallas Dallas 75391
    Dallas Dallas 75392
    Dallas Dallas 75393
    Dallas Dallas 75394
    Dallas Dallas 75395
    Dallas Dallas 75396
    Dallas Dallas 75397
    Dallas Dallas 75398
    Dallas Dallas 75221
    Dallas Dallas 75222
    Dallas Dallas 75245
    Dallas Dallas 75250
    Dallas Dallas 75261
    Dallas Dallas 75262
    Dallas Dallas 75263
    Dallas Dallas 75264
    Dallas Dallas 75265
    Dallas Dallas 75266
    Dallas Dallas 75267
    Dallas Dallas 75313
    Dallas Dallas 75315
    Dallas Dallas 75334
    Dallas Dallas 75336
    Dallas Dallas 75339
    Dallas Dallas 75340
    Dallas Dallas 75343
    Dallas Dallas 75344
    Dallas Dallas 75354
    Dallas Dallas 75355
    Dallas Dallas 75356
    Dallas Dallas 75357
    Dallas Dallas 75359
    Dallas Dallas 75360
    Dallas Dallas 75367
    Dallas Dallas 75370
    Dallas Dallas 75371
    Dallas Dallas 75372
    Dallas Dallas 75374
    Dallas Dallas 75376
    Dallas Dallas 75378
    Dallas Dallas 75379
    Dallas Dallas 75380
    Dallas Dallas 75381
    Dallas Dallas 75382
    Dallas DeSoto 75115
    Dallas DeSoto 75123
    Dallas Duncanville 75116
    Dallas Duncanville 75137
    Dallas Duncanville 75138
    Dallas Farmers Branch 75234
    Dallas Farmers Branch 75244
    Dallas Fingerhut Corp 75386
    Dallas Garland 75040
    Dallas Garland 75041
    Dallas Garland 75042
    Dallas Garland 75043
    Dallas Garland 75044
    Dallas Garland 75048
    Dallas Garland 75045
    Dallas Garland 75046
    Dallas Garland 75047
    Dallas Garland 75049
    Dallas Grand Prairie 75050
    Dallas Grand Prairie 75051
    Dallas Grand Prairie 75052
    Dallas Grand Prairie 75054
    Dallas Grand Prairie 75053
    Dallas Hutchins 75141
    Dallas Irving 75037
    Dallas Irving 75038
    Dallas Irving 75039
    Dallas Irving 75060
    Dallas Irving 75061
    Dallas Irving 75062
    Dallas Irving 75063
    Dallas Irving 75014
    Dallas Irving 75015
    Dallas Irving 75016
    Dallas Irving 75017
    Dallas Lancaster 75134
    Dallas Lancaster 75146
    Dallas Mesquite 75149
    Dallas Mesquite 75150
    Dallas Mesquite 75180
    Dallas Mesquite 75181
    Dallas Mesquite 75182
    Dallas Mesquite 75185
    Dallas Mesquite 75187
    Dallas Neiman Marcus 75037
    Dallas Richardson 75080
    Dallas Richardson 75081
    Dallas Richardson 75082
    Dallas Richardson 75083
    Dallas Richardson 75085
    Dallas Rowlett 75088
    Dallas Rowlett 75089
    Dallas Rowlett 75030
    Dallas Sachse 75048
    Dallas Seagoville 75159
    Dallas Sunnyvale 75182
    Dallas Wilmer 75172
    Delta Ben Franklin 75415
    Delta Cooper 75432
    Delta Cumby 75433
    Delta Enloe 75441
    Delta Klondike 75448
    Delta Lake Creek 75450
    Delta Pecan Gap 75469
    Denton Flower Mound 75022
    Denton Flower Mound 75028
    Ellis Avalon 76623
    Ellis Bardwell 75101
    Ellis Ennis 75119
    Ellis Ennis 75120
    Ellis Ferris 75125
    Ellis Forreston 76041
    Ellis Glenn Heights 75154
    Ellis Italy 76651
    Ellis Maypearl 76064
    Ellis Midlothian 76065
    Ellis Milford 76670
    Ellis Oak Leaf 75154
    Ellis Ovilla 75154
    Ellis Palmer 75152
    Ellis Red Oak 75154
    Ellis Rice 75155
    Ellis Waxahachie 75165
    Ellis Waxahachie 75167
    Ellis Waxahachie 75168
    Fannin Bailey 75413
    Fannin Bonham 75418
    Fannin Dodd City 75438
    Fannin Ector 75439
    Fannin Gober 75443
    Fannin Honey Grove 75446
    Fannin Ivanhoe 75447
    Fannin Ladonia 75449
    Fannin Leonard 75452
    Fannin Randolph 75475
    Fannin Ravenna 75476
    Fannin Savoy 75479
    Fannin Telephone 75488
    Fannin Trenton 75490
    Fannin Windom 75492
    Franklin Mount Vernon 75457
    Franklin Scroggins 75480
    Franklin Talco 75487
    Grayson Bells 75414
    Grayson Collinsville 76233
    Grayson Denison 75020
    Grayson Denison 75021
    Grayson Dorchester 75459
    Grayson Gordonville 76245
    Grayson Gunter 75058
    Grayson Howe 75459
    Grayson Pottsboro 75076
    Grayson Sadler 76264
    Grayson Sherman 75090
    Grayson Sherman 75092
    Grayson Sherman 75091
    Grayson Southmayd 76268
    Grayson Tioga 76271
    Grayson Tom Bean 75489
    Grayson Van Alstyne 75495
    Grayson Whitesboro 76273
    Grayson Whitewright 75491
    Hopkins Brashear 75420
    Hopkins Como 75431
    Hopkins Dike 75437
    Hopkins Pickton 75471
    Hopkins Saltillo 75478
    Hopkins Sulphur Bluff 75481
    Hopkins Sulphur Springs 75482
    Hopkins Sulphur Springs 75483
    Hunt Caddo Mills 75135
    Hunt Campbell 75422
    Hunt Celeste 75423
    Hunt Commerce 75428
    Hunt Greenville 75401
    Hunt Greenville 75402
    Hunt Greenville 75403
    Hunt Greenville 75404
    Hunt Lone Oak 75453
    Hunt Merit 75458
    Hunt Quinlan 75474
    Hunt Texas A&M–Commerce 75429
    Hunt West Tawakoni 75474
    Hunt Wolfe City 75496
    Kaufman Crandall 75114
    Kaufman Elmo 75118
    Kaufman Enchanted Oaks 75156
    Kaufman Forney 75126
    Kaufman Gun Barrel City 75147
    Kaufman Gun Barrel City 75156
    Kaufman Heartland 75126
    Kaufman Kaufman 75142
    Kaufman Kemp 75143
    Kaufman Mabank 75147
    Kaufman Mabank 75156
    Kaufman Rosser 75157
    Kaufman Scurry 75158
    Kaufman Seven Points 75143
    Kaufman Terrell 75160
    Kaufman Terrell 75161
    Lamar Arthur City 75411
    Lamar Blossom 75416
    Lamar Brookston 75421
    Lamar Chicota 75425
    Lamar Cunningham 75434
    Lamar Deport 75435
    Lamar Paris 75460
    Lamar Paris 75462
    Lamar Paris 75461
    Lamar Pattonville 75468
    Lamar Petty 75470
    Lamar Powderly 75473
    Lamar Reno 75462
    Lamar Roxton 75477
    Lamar Sumner 75486
    Mason Cason 75636
    Morris Daingerfield 75638
    Morris Lone Star 75668
    Morris Naples 75568
    Morris Omaha 75571
    Red River Annona 75550
    Red River Avery 75554
    Red River Bagwell 75412
    Red River Bogota 75417
    Red River Clarksville 75426
    Red River Detroit 75436
    Rockwall Fate 75132
    Rockwall Heath 75032
    Rockwall Rockwall 75032
    Rockwall Rockwall 75087
    Rockwall Royse City 75189
    Titus Cookville 75558
    Titus Mount Pleasant 75455
    Titus Mount Pleasant 75456
    Titus Winfield 75493

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    Area 11 Greater Fort Worth

    County City Zip
    Cooke Callisburg 76240
    Cooke Era 76238
    Cooke Gainesville 76240
    Cooke Gainesville 76241
    Cooke Lake Kiowa 76240
    Cooke Lindsay 76250
    Cooke Muenster 76252
    Cooke Myra 76253
    Cooke Rosston 76263
    Cooke Valley View 76272
    Denton Argyle 76226
    Denton Aubrey 76227
    Denton Bartonville 76226
    Denton Copper Canyon 75077
    Denton Corinth 76208
    Denton Corinth 76210
    Denton Cross Roads 76227
    Denton Denton 76201
    Denton Denton 76205
    Denton Denton 76207
    Denton Denton 76208
    Denton Denton 76209
    Denton Denton 76210
    Denton Denton 76202
    Denton Denton 76203
    Denton Denton 76204
    Denton Denton 76206
    Denton Double Oak 75077
    Denton Flower Mound 75027
    Denton Hickory Creek 75065
    Denton Highland Village 75077
    Denton Justin 76247
    Denton Krugerville 76227
    Denton Krum 76249
    Denton Lake Dallas 75065
    Denton Lakewood Village 75068
    Denton Lantana 76226
    Denton Lewisville 75056
    Denton Lewisville 75057
    Denton Lewisville 75067
    Denton Lewisville 75077
    Denton Lewisville 75027
    Denton Lewisville 75029
    Denton Little Elm 75068
    Denton Oak Point 75068
    Denton Pilot Point 76258
    Denton Ponder 76259
    Denton Providence Village 76227
    Denton Roanoke 76262
    Denton Roanoke 76299
    Denton Sanger 76266
    Denton Savannah 76227
    Denton Shady Shores 76208
    Denton The Colony 75034
    Denton The Colony 75056
    Denton Trophy Club 76262
    Denton Westlake 76262
    Erath Bluff Dale 76433
    Erath Dublin 76446
    Erath Lingleville 76461
    Erath Morgan Mill 76465
    Erath Stephenville 76401
    Erath Stephenville 76402
    Hood Acton 76049
    Hood Cresson 76035
    Hood Granbury 76048
    Hood Granbury 76049
    Hood Lipan 76462
    Hood Paluxy 76467
    Hood Tolar 76476
    Johnson Alvarado 76009
    Johnson Burleson 76028
    Johnson Burleson 76097
    Johnson Cleburne 76031
    Johnson Cleburne 76033
    Johnson Godley 76044
    Johnson Grandview 76050
    Johnson Joshua 76058
    Johnson Keene 76059
    Johnson Lillian 76061
    Johnson Rio Vista 76093
    Johnson Venus 76084
    Palo Pinto Gordon 76453
    Palo Pinto Graford 76449
    Palo Pinto Mineral Wells 76067
    Palo Pinto Mineral Wells 76068
    Palo Pinto Mingus 76463
    Palo Pinto Palo Pinto 76484
    Palo Pinto Santo 76472
    Palo Pinto Strawn 76475
    Parker Aledo 76008
    Parker Brock 76087
    Parker Dennis 76439
    Parker Hudson Oaks 76087
    Parker Millsap 76066
    Parker Peaster 76485
    Parker Poolville 76487
    Parker Springtown 76082
    Parker Weatherford 76085
    Parker Weatherford 76086
    Parker Weatherford 76087
    Parker Weatherford 76088
    Parker Whitt 76490
    Parker Willow Park 76087
    Somervell Glen Rose 76043
    Somervell Nemo 76070
    Somervell Rainbow 76077
    Tarrant Arlington 76001
    Tarrant Arlington 76002
    Tarrant Arlington 76006
    Tarrant Arlington 76010
    Tarrant Arlington 76011
    Tarrant Arlington 76012
    Tarrant Arlington 76013
    Tarrant Arlington 76014
    Tarrant Arlington 76015
    Tarrant Arlington 76016
    Tarrant Arlington 76017
    Tarrant Arlington 76018
    Tarrant Arlington 76019
    Tarrant Arlington 76003
    Tarrant Arlington 76004
    Tarrant Arlington 76005
    Tarrant Arlington 76007
    Tarrant Arlington 76094
    Tarrant Arlington 76096
    Tarrant Azle 76020
    Tarrant Azle 76098
    Tarrant Bedford 76021
    Tarrant Bedford 76022
    Tarrant Bedford 76095
    Tarrant Benbrook 76109
    Tarrant Benbrook 76116
    Tarrant Benbrook 76126
    Tarrant Benbrook 76132
    Tarrant Blue Mound 76131
    Tarrant Colleyville 76034
    Tarrant Crowley 76036
    Tarrant Euless 76039
    Tarrant Euless 76040
    Tarrant Everman 76140
    Tarrant Forest Hill 76119
    Tarrant Forest Hill 76140
    Tarrant Fort Worth 76102
    Tarrant Fort Worth 76103
    Tarrant Fort Worth 76104
    Tarrant Fort Worth 76105
    Tarrant Fort Worth 76106
    Tarrant Fort Worth 76107
    Tarrant Fort Worth 76108
    Tarrant Fort Worth 76109
    Tarrant Fort Worth 76110
    Tarrant Fort Worth 76111
    Tarrant Fort Worth 76112
    Tarrant Fort Worth 76114
    Tarrant Fort Worth 76115
    Tarrant Fort Worth 76116
    Tarrant Fort Worth 76117
    Tarrant Fort Worth 76118
    Tarrant Fort Worth 76119
    Tarrant Fort Worth 76120
    Tarrant Fort Worth 76122
    Tarrant Fort Worth 76123
    Tarrant Fort Worth 76126
    Tarrant Fort Worth 76127
    Tarrant Fort Worth 76129
    Tarrant Fort Worth 76130
    Tarrant Fort Worth 76131
    Tarrant Fort Worth 76132
    Tarrant Fort Worth 76133
    Tarrant Fort Worth 76134
    Tarrant Fort Worth 76135
    Tarrant Fort Worth 76137
    Tarrant Fort Worth 76140
    Tarrant Fort Worth 76148
    Tarrant Fort Worth 76150
    Tarrant Fort Worth 76155
    Tarrant Fort Worth 76177
    Tarrant Fort Worth 76179
    Tarrant Fort Worth 76180
    Tarrant Fort Worth 76182
    Tarrant Fort Worth 76191
    Tarrant Fort Worth 76192
    Tarrant Fort Worth 76193
    Tarrant Fort Worth 76195
    Tarrant Fort Worth 76196
    Tarrant Fort Worth 76197
    Tarrant Fort Worth 76198
    Tarrant Fort Worth 76199
    Tarrant Fort Worth 76101
    Tarrant Fort Worth 76113
    Tarrant Fort Worth 76121
    Tarrant Fort Worth 76124
    Tarrant Fort Worth 76136
    Tarrant Fort Worth 76147
    Tarrant Fort Worth 76161
    Tarrant Fort Worth 76162
    Tarrant Fort Worth 76163
    Tarrant Fort Worth 76164
    Tarrant Fort Worth 76181
    Tarrant Fort Worth 76185
    Tarrant Grapevine 76051
    Tarrant Grapevine 76092
    Tarrant Grapevine 76099
    Tarrant Haltom City 76111
    Tarrant Haltom City 76117
    Tarrant Haltom City 76137
    Tarrant Haltom City 76148
    Tarrant Haltom City 76180
    Tarrant Haslet 76052
    Tarrant Hurst 76053
    Tarrant Hurst 76054
    Tarrant Keller 76248
    Tarrant Keller 76244
    Tarrant Kennedale 76060
    Tarrant Lake Worth 76135
    Tarrant Lake Worth 76136
    Tarrant Lakeside 76108
    Tarrant Lakeside 76135
    Tarrant Mansfield 76063
    Tarrant Naval Air Station/JRB 76127
    Tarrant North Richland Hills 76118
    Tarrant North Richland Hills 76180
    Tarrant North Richland Hills 76182
    Tarrant Pantego 76013
    Tarrant Pantego 76015
    Tarrant Richland Hills 76118
    Tarrant Richland Hills 76180
    Tarrant River Oaks 76114
    Tarrant Saginaw 76131
    Tarrant Saginaw 76177
    Tarrant Saginaw 76179
    Tarrant Southlake 76092
    Tarrant Watauga 76148
    Tarrant Westworth Village 76114
    Tarrant White Settlement 76108
    Wise Alvord 76225
    Wise Aurora 76078
    Wise Boyd 76023
    Wise Bridgeport 76426
    Wise Chico 76431
    Wise Decatur 76234
    Wise Greenwood 76246
    Wise Newark 76071
    Wise Paradise 76073
    Wise Rhome 76078
    Wise Runaway Bay 76426
    Wise Slidell 76267

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    Area 12 Heart of Texas

    County City Zip
    Bell Bartlett 76511
    Bell Belton 76513
    Bell Fort Hood 76544
    Bell Harker Heights 76542
    Bell Harker Heights 76543
    Bell Harker Heights 76548
    Bell Heidenheimer 76533
    Bell Holland 76534
    Bell Killeen 76541
    Bell Killeen 76542
    Bell Killeen 76543
    Bell Killeen 76544
    Bell Killeen 76545
    Bell Killeen 76546
    Bell Killeen 76548
    Bell Killeen 76549
    Bell Killeen 76540
    Bell Killeen 76547
    Bell Little River-Academy 76554
    Bell Morgan's Point Resort 76513
    Bell Nolanville 76559
    Bell Pendleton 76564
    Bell Rogers 76569
    Bell Salado 76571
    Bell Temple 76501
    Bell Temple 76502
    Bell Temple 76504
    Bell Temple 76508
    Bell Temple 76503
    Bell Temple 76505
    Bell Troy 76579
    Bosque Clifton 76634
    Bosque Clifton 76644
    Bosque Cranfills Gap 76637
    Bosque Iredell 76649
    Bosque Kopperl 76652
    Bosque Laguna Park 76634
    Bosque Laguna Park 76644
    Bosque Meridian 76665
    Bosque Morgan 76671
    Bosque Valley Mills 76689
    Bosque Walnut Springs 76690
    Coryell Bee House 76525
    Coryell Copperas Cove 76522
    Coryell Evant 76525
    Coryell Flat 76526
    Coryell Gatesville 76528
    Coryell Gatesville 76596
    Coryell Gatesville 76597
    Coryell Gatesville 76598
    Coryell Gatesville 76599
    Coryell Izoro 76528
    Coryell Jonesboro 76538
    Coryell Leon Junction 76528
    Coryell Mound 76558
    Coryell Oglesby 76561
    Coryell Purmela 76566
    Falls Chilton 76632
    Falls Lott 76656
    Falls Marlin 76661
    Falls Reagan 76680
    Falls Rosebud 76570
    Falls Satin 76685
    Freestone Donie 75838
    Freestone Fairfield 75840
    Freestone Kirvin 75848
    Freestone Streetman 75859
    Freestone Teague 75860
    Freestone Wortham 76693
    Hamilton Carlton 76436
    Hamilton Hamilton 76531
    Hamilton Hico 76457
    Hamilton Pottsville 76565
    Hill Abbott 76621
    Hill Aquilla 76622
    Hill Birome 76673
    Hill Blum 76627
    Hill Brandon 76628
    Hill Bynum 76631
    Hill Covington 76636
    Hill Hillsboro 76645
    Hill Hubbard 76648
    Hill Irene 76650
    Hill Itasca 76055
    Hill Malone 76660
    Hill Mertens 76666
    Hill Mount Calm 76673
    Hill Penelope 76676
    Hill Whitney 76692
    Lampasas Kempner 76539
    Lampasas Lampasas 76550
    Lampasas Lometa 76853
    Limestone Coolidge 76635
    Limestone Groesbeck 76642
    Limestone Kosse 76653
    Limestone Mexia 76667
    Limestone Prairie Hill 76678
    Limestone Tehuacana 76686
    Limestone Thornton 76687
    McLennan Axtell 76624
    McLennan Bellmead 76704
    McLennan Bellmead 76705
    McLennan Beverly Hills 76711
    McLennan Bruceville 76630
    McLennan China Spring 76633
    McLennan Crawford 76638
    McLennan Eddy 76524
    McLennan Elm Mott 76640
    McLennan Hewitt 76643
    McLennan Lacy Lakeview 76705
    McLennan Leroy 76654
    McLennan Lorena 76655
    McLennan Mart 76664
    McLennan McGregor 76657
    McLennan Moody 76557
    McLennan Otto 76682
    McLennan Perry 76682
    McLennan Riesel 76682
    McLennan Robinson 76706
    McLennan Ross 76684
    McLennan Waco 76701
    McLennan Waco 76704
    McLennan Waco 76705
    McLennan Waco 76706
    McLennan Waco 76707
    McLennan Waco 76708
    McLennan Waco 76710
    McLennan Waco 76711
    McLennan Waco 76712
    McLennan Waco 76795
    McLennan Waco 76797
    McLennan Waco 76798
    McLennan Waco 76799
    McLennan Waco 76702
    McLennan Waco 76703
    McLennan Waco 76714
    McLennan Waco 76715
    McLennan Waco 76716
    McLennan West 76691
    McLennan Woodway 76712
    Mills Goldthwaite 76844
    Mills Mullin 76864
    Mills Priddy 76870
    Mills Star 76880
    Navarro Barry 75102
    Navarro Blooming Grove 76626
    Navarro Chatfield 75105
    Navarro Corsicana 75109
    Navarro Corsicana 75110
    Navarro Corsicana 75151
    Navarro Dawson 76639
    Navarro Frost 76641
    Navarro Kerens 75144
    Navarro Powell 75153
    Navarro Purdon 76679
    Navarro Richland 76681

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    Area 13 Central Texas

    County City Zip
    Bastrop Bastrop 78602
    Bastrop Cedar Creek 78612
    Bastrop Elgin 78621
    Bastrop Lost Pines 78612
    Bastrop McDade 78650
    Bastrop Paige 78659
    Bastrop Red Rock 78662
    Bastrop Rosanky 78953
    Bastrop Smithville 78957
    Bastrop Webberville 78621
    Blanco Blanco 78606
    Blanco Cypress Mill 78663
    Blanco Cypress Mill 78683
    Blanco Hye 78635
    Blanco Johnson City 78636
    Blanco Round Mountain 78663
    Blanco Round Mountain 78683
    Blanco Sandy 78636
    Burnet Bertram 78605
    Burnet Briggs 78608
    Burnet Burnet 78611
    Burnet Cottonwood Shores 78657
    Burnet Granite Shoals 78654
    Burnet Highland Haven 78654
    Burnet Horseshoe Bay 78657
    Burnet Marble Falls 78654
    Burnet Marble Falls 78657
    Burnet Meadowlakes 78654
    Burnet Oakalla 78608
    Caldwell Dale 78616
    Caldwell Fentress 78622
    Caldwell Lockhart 78644
    Caldwell Luling 78648
    Caldwell Martindale 78655
    Caldwell Maxwell 78656
    Caldwell McMahan 78616
    Caldwell Prairie Lea 78661
    Colorado Alleyton 78935
    Colorado Altair 77412
    Colorado Columbus 78934
    Colorado Eagle Lake 77434
    Colorado Garwood 77442
    Colorado Glidden 78943
    Colorado Nada 77460
    Colorado Oakland 78951
    Colorado Rock Island 77470
    Colorado Sheridan 77475
    Colorado Weimar 78962
    Comal Bulverde 78163
    Comal Canyon Lake 78130
    Comal Canyon Lake 78132
    Comal Canyon Lake 78133
    Comal Fischer 78623
    Comal New Braunfels 78130
    Comal New Braunfels 78132
    Comal New Braunfels 78133
    Comal New Braunfels 78135
    Comal New Braunfels 78131
    Comal Spring Branch 78070
    DeWitt Cuero 77954
    DeWitt Hochheim 77967
    DeWitt Meyersville 77974
    DeWitt Nordheim 78141
    DeWitt Thomaston 77989
    DeWitt Westhoff 77994
    DeWitt Yorktown 78164
    Fayette Carmine 78932
    Fayette Ellinger 78938
    Fayette Fayetteville 78940
    Fayette Flatonia 78941
    Fayette La Grange 78945
    Fayette Ledbetter 78946
    Fayette Muldoon 78949
    Fayette Plum 78952
    Fayette Round Top 78954
    Fayette Round Top 78961
    Fayette Schulenburg 78956
    Fayette Warda 78960
    Fayette Warrenton 78961
    Fayette West Point 78963
    Fayette Winchester 78945
    Gillespie Doss 78618
    Gillespie Fredericksburg 78624
    Gillespie Harper 78631
    Gillespie Willow City 78675
    Gonzales Bebe 78614
    Gonzales Belmont 78604
    Gonzales Cost 78614
    Gonzales Gonzales 78629
    Gonzales Harwood 78632
    Gonzales Leesville 78122
    Gonzales Nixon 78140
    Gonzales Ottine 78658
    Gonzales Smiley 78159
    Gonzales Waelder 78959
    Gonzales Wrightsboro 78677
    Guadalupe Cibolo 78108
    Guadalupe Geronimo 78115
    Guadalupe Kingsbury 78638
    Guadalupe Marion 78124
    Guadalupe McQueeney 78123
    Guadalupe Schertz 78154
    Guadalupe Seguin 78155
    Guadalupe Seguin 78156
    Guadalupe Selma 78154
    Guadalupe Staples 78670
    Hays Buda 78610
    Hays Creedmoor 78610
    Hays Driftwood 78619
    Hays Dripping Springs 78620
    Hays Kyle 78640
    Hays Mountain City 78610
    Hays Niederwald 78640
    Hays San Marcos 78666
    Hays San Marcos 78667
    Hays Uhland 78640
    Hays Wimberley 78676
    Hays Woodcreek 78676
    Kendall Bergheim 78004
    Kendall Boerne 78006
    Kendall Boerne 78015
    Kendall Comfort 78013
    Kendall Fair Oaks 78006
    Kendall Fair Oaks 78015
    Kendall Fair Oaks Ranch 78006
    Kendall Fair Oaks Ranch 78015
    Kendall Kendalia 78027
    Kendall Sisterdale 78006
    Kendall Waring 78074
    Lavaca Hallettsville 77964
    Lavaca Moulton 77975
    Lavaca Shiner 77984
    Lavaca Speaks 77964
    Lavaca Sublime 77986
    Lavaca Sweet Home 77987
    Lavaca Yoakum 77995
    Lee Dime Box 77853
    Lee Giddings 78942
    Lee Lexington 78947
    Lee Lincoln 78948
    Llano Bluffton 78607
    Llano Buchanan Dam 78609
    Llano Castell 76831
    Llano Kingsland 78639
    Llano Llano 78643
    Llano Sunrise Beach 78643
    Llano Tow 78672
    Llano Valley Spring 76885
    Travis Austin 78701
    Travis Austin 78702
    Travis Austin 78703
    Travis Austin 78704
    Travis Austin 78705
    Travis Austin 78710
    Travis Austin 78712
    Travis Austin 78717
    Travis Austin 78719
    Travis Austin 78721
    Travis Austin 78722
    Travis Austin 78723
    Travis Austin 78724
    Travis Austin 78725
    Travis Austin 78726
    Travis Austin 78727
    Travis Austin 78728
    Travis Austin 78729
    Travis Austin 78730
    Travis Austin 78731
    Travis Austin 78732
    Travis Austin 78733
    Travis Austin 78734
    Travis Austin 78735
    Travis Austin 78736
    Travis Austin 78737
    Travis Austin 78738
    Travis Austin 78739
    Travis Austin 78741
    Travis Austin 78742
    Travis Austin 78744
    Travis Austin 78745
    Travis Austin 78746
    Travis Austin 78747
    Travis Austin 78748
    Travis Austin 78749
    Travis Austin 78750
    Travis Austin 78751
    Travis Austin 78752
    Travis Austin 78753
    Travis Austin 78754
    Travis Austin 78756
    Travis Austin 78757
    Travis Austin 78758
    Travis Austin 78759
    Travis Austin 78772
    Travis Austin 78773
    Travis Austin 78774
    Travis Austin 78778
    Travis Austin 78779
    Travis Austin 78780
    Travis Austin 78781
    Travis Austin 78782
    Travis Austin 78783
    Travis Austin 78785
    Travis Austin 78786
    Travis Austin 78788
    Travis Austin 78789
    Travis Austin 78798
    Travis Austin 78799
    Travis Austin 78708
    Travis Austin 78709
    Travis Austin 78711
    Travis Austin 78713
    Travis Austin 78714
    Travis Austin 78715
    Travis Austin 78716
    Travis Austin 78718
    Travis Austin 78720
    Travis Austin 78755
    Travis Austin 78760
    Travis Austin 78761
    Travis Austin 78762
    Travis Austin 78763
    Travis Austin 78764
    Travis Austin 78765
    Travis Austin 78766
    Travis Austin 78767
    Travis Austin 78768
    Travis Austin 78769
    Travis Bee Cave 78733
    Travis Bee Cave 78734
    Travis Bee Cave 78736
    Travis Bee Cave 78738
    Travis Briarcliff 78669
    Travis Del Valle 78617
    Travis Jonestown 78645
    Travis Lago Vista 78645
    Travis Lakeway 78734
    Travis Lakeway 78738
    Travis Leander 78641
    Travis Leander 78645
    Travis Leander 78646
    Travis Manchaca 78652
    Travis Manor 78653
    Travis McNeil 78651
    Travis Pflugerville 78660
    Travis Pflugerville 78691
    Travis Point Venture 78645
    Travis Rollingwood 78746
    Travis Spicewood 78669
    Travis Sunset Valley 78735
    Travis Sunset Valley 78745
    Travis The Hills 78738
    Travis Village Of The Hills 78738
    Travis Volente 78641
    Travis Webberville 78653
    Travis West Lake Hills 78746
    Williamson Andice 78628
    Williamson Cedar Park 78613
    Williamson Cedar Park 78630
    Williamson Coupland 78615
    Williamson Dell Computers 78682
    Williamson Florence 76527
    Williamson Georgetown 78626
    Williamson Georgetown 78628
    Williamson Georgetown 78627
    Williamson Granger 76530
    Williamson Hutto 78634
    Williamson Jarrell 76537
    Williamson Liberty Hill 78642
    Williamson Round Rock 78664
    Williamson Round Rock 78681
    Williamson Round Rock 78682
    Williamson Round Rock 78680
    Williamson Schwertner 76573
    Williamson Sun City 78628
    Williamson Taylor 76574
    Williamson Thrall 76578
    Williamson Walburg 78673
    Williamson Weir 78674

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    Area 14 Big Country

    County City Zip
    Brown Bangs 76823
    Brown Blanket 76432
    Brown Brookesmith 76827
    Brown Brownwood 76801
    Brown Brownwood 76802
    Brown Brownwood 76803
    Brown Brownwood 76804
    Brown Early 76802
    Brown May 76857
    Brown Zephyr 76890
    Callahan Baird 79504
    Callahan Clyde 79510
    Callahan Cross Plains 76443
    Callahan Putnam 76469
    Coke Bronte 76933
    Coke Robert Lee 76945
    Coke Silver 76949
    Coke Tennyson 76953
    Coleman Burkett 76828
    Coleman Coleman 76834
    Coleman Goldsboro 79519
    Coleman Gouldbusk 76845
    Coleman Leaday 76888
    Coleman Novice 79538
    Coleman Rockwood 76873
    Coleman Santa Anna 76878
    Coleman Talpa 76882
    Coleman Valera 76884
    Coleman Voss 76888
    Coleman Whon 76878
    Comanche Comanche 76442
    Comanche De Leon 76444
    Comanche Energy 76452
    Comanche Gustine 76455
    Comanche Hasse 76442
    Comanche Proctor 76468
    Comanche Sidney 76474
    Concho Eden 76837
    Concho Eola 76937
    Concho Lowake 76855
    Concho Millersview 76862
    Concho Paint Rock 76866
    Eastland Carbon 76435
    Eastland Cisco 76437
    Eastland Desdemona 76445
    Eastland Eastland 76448
    Eastland Gorman 76454
    Eastland Olden 76466
    Eastland Ranger 76470
    Eastland Rising Star 76471
    Fisher McCaulley 79534
    Fisher Roby 79543
    Fisher Rotan 79546
    Fisher Sylvester 79560
    Haskell Haskell 79521
    Haskell O'Brien 79539
    Haskell Rochester 79544
    Haskell Rule 79547
    Haskell Rule 79548
    Haskell Sagerton 79548
    Haskell Weinert 76388
    Irion Barnhart 76930
    Irion Mertzon 76941
    Jones Anson 79501
    Jones Avoca 79503
    Jones Hamlin 79520
    Jones Hawley 79525
    Jones Lueders 79533
    Jones Stamford 79553
    Mason Art 76820
    Mason Fredonia 76842
    Mason Mason 76856
    Mason Pontotoc 76869
    McCulloch Brady 76825
    McCulloch Doole 76836
    McCulloch Fife 76825
    McCulloch Lohn 76852
    McCulloch Melvin 76858
    McCulloch Pear Valley 76852
    McCulloch Rochelle 76872
    McCulloch Voca 76887
    Mitchell Colorado City 79512
    Mitchell Loraine 79532
    Mitchell Westbrook 79565
    Nolan Blackwell 79506
    Nolan Maryneal 79535
    Nolan Nolan 79537
    Nolan Roscoe 79545
    Nolan Sweetwater 79556
    Runnels Ballinger 76821
    Runnels Miles 76861
    Runnels Norton 76865
    Runnels Rowena 76875
    Runnels Wingate 79566
    Runnels Winters 79567
    San Saba Bend 76824
    San Saba Cherokee 76832
    San Saba Richland Springs 76871
    San Saba San Saba 76877
    Scurry Dermott 79549
    Scurry Dunn 79516
    Scurry Fluvanna 79517
    Scurry Hermleigh 79526
    Scurry Ira 79527
    Scurry Snyder 79549
    Scurry Snyder 79550
    Shackelford Albany 76430
    Shackelford Moran 76464
    Stephens Breckenridge 76424
    Stephens Caddo 76429
    Sterling Sterling City 76951
    Stonewall Albert 78671
    Stonewall Aspermont 79502
    Stonewall Old Glory 79540
    Stonewall Stonewall 78671
    Taylor Abilene 79601
    Taylor Abilene 79602
    Taylor Abilene 79603
    Taylor Abilene 79605
    Taylor Abilene 79606
    Taylor Abilene 79607
    Taylor Abilene 79697
    Taylor Abilene 79698
    Taylor Abilene 79699
    Taylor Abilene 79604
    Taylor Abilene 79608
    Taylor Buffalo Gap 79508
    Taylor Dyess AFB 79607
    Taylor Lawn 79530
    Taylor Merkel 79536
    Taylor Ovalo 79541
    Taylor Trent 79561
    Taylor Tuscola 79562
    Taylor Tye 79563
    Tom Green Carlsbad 76934
    Tom Green Christoval 76935
    Tom Green Goodfellow Air Force Base 76908
    Tom Green Grape Creek 76901
    Tom Green Knickerbocker 76939
    Tom Green Mereta 76940
    Tom Green San Angelo 76901
    Tom Green San Angelo 76903
    Tom Green San Angelo 76904
    Tom Green San Angelo 76905
    Tom Green San Angelo 76908
    Tom Green San Angelo 76909
    Tom Green San Angelo 76902
    Tom Green San Angelo 76906
    Tom Green Vancourt 76955
    Tom Green Veribest 76886
    Tom Green Wall 76957
    Tom Green Water Valley 76958

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    Area 16 Panhandle

    County City Zip
    Armstrong Claude 79019
    Armstrong Wayside 79094
    Briscoe Quitaque 79255
    Briscoe Silverton 79257
    Carson Groom 79039
    Carson Panhandle 79068
    Carson Skellytown 79080
    Carson White Deer 79097
    Castro Dimmitt 79027
    Castro Hart 79043
    Castro Nazareth 79063
    Castro Summerfield 79085
    Childress Childress 79201
    Childress Northfield 79201
    Childress Tell 79259
    Collingsworth Dodson 79230
    Collingsworth Quail 79251
    Collingsworth Samnorwood 79077
    Collingsworth Wellington 79095
    Dallam Dalhart 79022
    Dallam Kerrick 79051
    Dallam Texline 79087
    Deaf Smith Dawn 79025
    Deaf Smith Hereford 79045
    Donley Clarendon 79226
    Donley Hedley 79237
    Donley Howardwick 79226
    Donley Lelia Lake 79240
    Gray Alanreed 79002
    Gray Lefors 79054
    Gray McLean 79057
    Gray Pampa 79065
    Gray Pampa 79066
    Hall Estelline 79233
    Hall Lakeview 79239
    Hall Memphis 79245
    Hall Turkey 79261
    Hansford Gruver 79040
    Hansford Morse 79062
    Hansford Spearman 79081
    Hartley Channing 79018
    Hartley Hartley 79044
    Hemphill Canadian 79014
    Hemphill Glazier 79014
    Hutchinson Borger 79007
    Hutchinson Borger 79008
    Hutchinson Fritch 79036
    Hutchinson Phillips 79007
    Hutchinson Sanford 79078
    Hutchinson Stinnett 79083
    Lipscomb Booker 79005
    Lipscomb Darrouzett 79024
    Lipscomb Follett 79034
    Lipscomb Higgins 79046
    Lipscomb Lipscomb 79056
    Moore Cactus 79013
    Moore Dumas 79029
    Moore Masterson 79058
    Moore Sunray 79086
    Ochiltree Farnsworth 79033
    Ochiltree Perryton 79070
    Ochiltree Waka 79093
    Oldham Adrian 79001
    Oldham Boys Ranch 79010
    Oldham Valle De Oro 79010
    Oldham Vega 79092
    Oldham Wildorado 79098
    Parmer Black 79035
    Parmer Bovina 79009
    Parmer Farwell 79325
    Parmer Friona 79035
    Parmer Lazbuddie 79053
    Potter Amarillo 79101
    Potter Amarillo 79102
    Potter Amarillo 79103
    Potter Amarillo 79104
    Potter Amarillo 79106
    Potter Amarillo 79107
    Potter Amarillo 79108
    Potter Amarillo 79109
    Potter Amarillo 79110
    Potter Amarillo 79111
    Potter Amarillo 79118
    Potter Amarillo 79119
    Potter Amarillo 79121
    Potter Amarillo 79124
    Potter Amarillo 79166
    Potter Amarillo 79168
    Potter Amarillo 79172
    Potter Amarillo 79174
    Potter Amarillo 79178
    Potter Amarillo 79185
    Potter Amarillo 79187
    Potter Amarillo 79105
    Potter Amarillo 79114
    Potter Amarillo 79116
    Potter Amarillo 79117
    Potter Amarillo 79120
    Potter Amarillo 79159
    Potter Amarillo 79189
    Potter Bushland 79012
    Randall Canyon 79015
    Randall Canyon 79016
    Randall Umbarger 79091
    Roberts Miami 79059
    Sherman Stratford 79084
    Swisher Happy 79042
    Swisher Kress 79052
    Swisher Tulia 79088
    Swisher Vigo Park 79088
    Wheeler Allison 79003
    Wheeler Briscoe 79011
    Wheeler Mobeetie 79061
    Wheeler Shamrock 79079
    Wheeler Twitty 79079
    Wheeler Wheeler 79096

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    Area 17 South Plains

    County City Zip
    Bailey Bula 79320
    Bailey Enochs 79324
    Bailey Maple 79344
    Bailey Muleshoe 79347
    Borden Gail 79738
    Cochran Bledsoe 79314
    Cochran Morton 79346
    Cochran Whiteface 79379
    Cottle Cee Vee 79223
    Cottle Paducah 79248
    Crosby Cone 79357
    Crosby Crosbyton 79322
    Crosby Lorenzo 79343
    Crosby Ralls 79357
    Dawson Ackerly 79713
    Dawson Lamesa 79331
    Dawson Welch 79377
    Dickens Afton 79220
    Dickens Dickens 79229
    Dickens McAdoo 79243
    Dickens Spur 79370
    Floyd Aiken 79221
    Floyd Dougherty 79231
    Floyd Floydada 79235
    Floyd Lockney 79241
    Floyd South Plains 79258
    Gaines Loop 79342
    Gaines Seagraves 79359
    Gaines Seminole 79360
    Garza Justiceburg 79330
    Garza Post 79356
    Hale Abernathy 79311
    Hale Cotton Center 79021
    Hale Edmonson 79032
    Hale Hale Center 79041
    Hale Petersburg 79250
    Hale Plainview 79072
    Hale Plainview 79073
    Hockley Anton 79313
    Hockley Levelland 79336
    Hockley Levelland 79338
    Hockley Pep 79353
    Hockley Ropesville 79358
    Hockley Smyer 79367
    Hockley Sundown 79372
    Hockley Whitharral 79380
    Kent Girard 79518
    Kent Jayton 79528
    King Dumont 79248
    King Guthrie 79236
    Lamb Amherst 79312
    Lamb Earth 79031
    Lamb Fieldton 79326
    Lamb Littlefield 79339
    Lamb Olton 79064
    Lamb Spade 79369
    Lamb Springlake 79082
    Lamb Sudan 79371
    Lubbock Idalou 79329
    Lubbock Lubbock 79401
    Lubbock Lubbock 79402
    Lubbock Lubbock 79403
    Lubbock Lubbock 79404
    Lubbock Lubbock 79405
    Lubbock Lubbock 79406
    Lubbock Lubbock 79407
    Lubbock Lubbock 79409
    Lubbock Lubbock 79410
    Lubbock Lubbock 79411
    Lubbock Lubbock 79412
    Lubbock Lubbock 79413
    Lubbock Lubbock 79414
    Lubbock Lubbock 79415
    Lubbock Lubbock 79416
    Lubbock Lubbock 79423
    Lubbock Lubbock 79424
    Lubbock Lubbock 79430
    Lubbock Lubbock 79457
    Lubbock Lubbock 79491
    Lubbock Lubbock 79408
    Lubbock Lubbock 79452
    Lubbock Lubbock 79453
    Lubbock Lubbock 79464
    Lubbock Lubbock 79490
    Lubbock Lubbock 79493
    Lubbock Lubbock 79499
    Lubbock New Caney 77357
    Lubbock New Deal 79350
    Lubbock Ransom Canyon 79364
    Lubbock Ransom Canyon 79366
    Lubbock Shallowater 79363
    Lubbock Slaton 79364
    Lubbock Southland 79364
    Lubbock Wolfforth 79382
    Lynn New Home 79381
    Lynn New Home 79383
    Lynn O'Donnell 79351
    Lynn Tahoka 79373
    Lynn Wilson 79381
    Motley Flomot 79234
    Motley Matador 79244
    Motley Roaring Springs 79256
    Terry Brownfield 79316
    Terry Meadow 79345
    Terry Wellman 79378
    Yoakum Denver City 79323
    Yoakum Plains 79355
    Yoakum Tokio 79376

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    Area 18 Permian Basin/Big Bend

    County City Zip
    Andrews Andrews 79714
    Brewster Alpine 79830
    Brewster Alpine 79832
    Brewster Alpine 79831
    Brewster Big Bend National Park 79834
    Brewster Lajitas 79852
    Brewster Marathon 79842
    Brewster Sul Ross 79832
    Brewster Terlingua 79852
    Crane Crane 79731
    Crockett Austonio 75835
    Crockett Ozona 76943
    Culberson Kent 79855
    Culberson Van Horn 79855
    Ector Gardendale 79758
    Ector Goldsmith 79741
    Ector Notrees 79759
    Ector Odessa 79761
    Ector Odessa 79762
    Ector Odessa 79763
    Ector Odessa 79764
    Ector Odessa 79765
    Ector Odessa 79766
    Ector Odessa 79760
    Ector Odessa 79768
    Ector Odessa 79769
    Ector Penwell 79776
    Glasscock Garden City 79739
    Howard Big Spring 79720
    Howard Big Spring 79721
    Howard Coahoma 79511
    Howard Forsan 79733
    Howard Knott 79748
    Howard Vealmoor 79720
    Jeff Davis Fort Davis 79734
    Jeff Davis Valentine 79854
    Loving Mentone 79754
    Martin Leming 78050
    Martin Lenorah 79749
    Martin Stanton 79782
    Martin Tarzan 79783
    Midland Midland 79701
    Midland Midland 79703
    Midland Midland 79705
    Midland Midland 79706
    Midland Midland 79707
    Midland Midland 79702
    Midland Midland 79704
    Midland Midland 79708
    Midland Midland 79710
    Midland Midland 79711
    Midland Midland 79712
    Pecos Coyanosa 79730
    Pecos Fort Stockton 79735
    Pecos Girvin 79740
    Pecos Imperial 79743
    Pecos Iraan 79744
    Pecos Sheffield 79781
    Presidio Marfa 79843
    Presidio Presidio 79845
    Presidio Presidio 79846
    Presidio Redford 79846
    Presidio Shafter 79843
    Reagan Best 76932
    Reagan Big Lake 76932
    Reagan Texon 76932
    Reeves Balmorhea 79718
    Reeves Orla 79770
    Reeves Pecos 79772
    Reeves Saragosa 79780
    Reeves Toyah 79785
    Reeves Toyahvale 79786
    Reeves Verhalen 79772
    Terrell Dryden 78851
    Terrell Sanderson 79848
    Upton McCamey 79752
    Upton Midkiff 79755
    Upton Rankin 79778
    Ward Barstow 79719
    Ward Grandfalls 79742
    Ward Monahans 79756
    Ward Pyote 79777
    Ward Wickett 79788
    Winkler Kermit 79745
    Winkler Wink 79789

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    Area 19 El Paso

    County City Zip
    El Paso Anthony 79821
    El Paso Biggs Field 79908
    El Paso Biggs Field 79918
    El Paso Canutillo 79835
    El Paso Clint 79836
    El Paso El Paso 79901
    El Paso El Paso 79902
    El Paso El Paso 79903
    El Paso El Paso 79904
    El Paso El Paso 79905
    El Paso El Paso 79906
    El Paso El Paso 79907
    El Paso El Paso 79908
    El Paso El Paso 79910
    El Paso El Paso 79911
    El Paso El Paso 79912
    El Paso El Paso 79915
    El Paso El Paso 79916
    El Paso El Paso 79918
    El Paso El Paso 79922
    El Paso El Paso 79924
    El Paso El Paso 79925
    El Paso El Paso 79927
    El Paso El Paso 79928
    El Paso El Paso 79930
    El Paso El Paso 79932
    El Paso El Paso 79934
    El Paso El Paso 79935
    El Paso El Paso 79936
    El Paso El Paso 79938
    El Paso El Paso 79958
    El Paso El Paso 79960
    El Paso El Paso 79961
    El Paso El Paso 79968
    El Paso El Paso 79976
    El Paso El Paso 79978
    El Paso El Paso 79980
    El Paso El Paso 79913
    El Paso El Paso 79914
    El Paso El Paso 79917
    El Paso El Paso 79920
    El Paso El Paso 79923
    El Paso El Paso 79926
    El Paso El Paso 79929
    El Paso El Paso 79931
    El Paso El Paso 79937
    El Paso El Paso 79940
    El Paso El Paso 79941
    El Paso El Paso 79942
    El Paso El Paso 79943
    El Paso El Paso 79944
    El Paso El Paso 79945
    El Paso El Paso 79946
    El Paso El Paso 79947
    El Paso El Paso 79948
    El Paso El Paso 79949
    El Paso El Paso 79950
    El Paso El Paso 79951
    El Paso El Paso 79952
    El Paso El Paso 79953
    El Paso El Paso 79954
    El Paso El Paso 79955
    El Paso El Paso 79990
    El Paso El Paso 79995
    El Paso El Paso 79996
    El Paso El Paso </