All-Star Training Club- A Program of UDS
All-Star Training Club was formed in March of 1987 and became a program of United Disability Services in early 2014. It was established as a program that would fill the void for a great number of individuals with disabilities who have no extra curricular activities in which to participate. Many students who are enrolled in special education classes are not eligible for Special Olympics competition. Those students fall between the cracks of an educational system that has the philosophy of mainstreaming and inclusion of individuals with disabilities into traditional programs. The “catch-22” is that school systems cannot or will not go against these philosophies by becoming a sanctioned Special Olympics organization. Special Olympics, in general, still remains a segregated organization. UDS All-Star Training Club has been a fully recognized outlet for the public school systems as the only source for their individuals to obtain access to Special Olympics.
ATC reaches out to these individuals and attempts to fill the void in their physical and emotional development by offering multiple sports opportunities throughout the year. ATC offers eight sports programs that are open to individuals beginning at age five with no maximum age limit. ATC has athletes from Summit, Portage, Medina, Stark and even Cuyahoga Counties. The main reason athletes come from so many parts of Northeast Ohio is because we are the only sports program that offers such a unique approach.
ATC is a totally inclusionary program that combines Special Olympic philosophies with interscholastic themes. All athletes are grouped based on abilities. This is the primary element to Special Olympics. ATC expands these themes into traditional interscholastic concepts where team unity and competition become the central focus in a positive manner. ATC uses an intramural approach whereby all athletes unite at one location for each session. Thus, many lasting friendships are formed. At each session, the athletes get personal attention to their physical growth.