Noteworthy progress in the community, anecdotes, recommendations, and more

What lottery?

on March 22, 2013

I found out recently that not all teams participating in Special Olympics Basketball this season will have the opportunity to go to state.

That kind of pisses me off. A lot.

I cannot find a single piece of official information regarding this on the Special Olympics Texas website,

There’s nothing about it on our district’s Facebook page. We’re in District 11 for Greater Fort Worth. District 10, for the Greater Dallas area, has information on their Facebook page. It’s only about their district, but it confirms that this IS a thing. Here’s the link for their results:

This is ridiculous. Our athletes have worked so hard! We have so many questions…

Why do we have a lottery now? Is there not enough room? Enough time? Enough resources?

What are we supposed to say to the athletes whose dreams are crushed by this? Sure, there’s always next year or a different sport, but this is the one they’ve been looking forward to.

When was this decided, and by who? Is this permanent or temporary?

I know very little, but here’s what I’ve gotten so far…
The decision was made at the state level. Apparently it’s based on past participation, like how many athletes/ teams you had in basketball last year.

A huge point I would like to bring up is how unfair this is to the coaches. They have no say in the matter and have to give the teams this news. The people who made the rule aren’t the ones telling our athletes and their families. We have tons of questions and plenty to say against this new rule, but the coaches don’t have any more information than we do. Their hands are tied.

I started to plan this post when I heard about it but decided to wait until I could see how the lottery played out and to gather some public opinion. We got one spot. We have two teams. Our athletes had to watch as the coaches had to draw from a bucket to see which team would get to go. The white team won, which is not the team my sisters are on. Contrary to what would be expected, I am comfortable with the outcome. You see, the white team has high schoolers on it who will letter in state. I have one in high school and one in middle school. Our high schooler is a sophmore and has been to state once and has the chance (less likely now though) to go again. What about seniors at other schools who are in their last year to letter? Our purple team will continue practicing regardless.

There’s nothing we can do expect communicate. Let people know what’s going on and encourage them to contact people who can actually change this policy!

Margaret Larsen
President and CEO

Marlene Mitchell
Administrative Assistant to the President

Melissa Matherne
Development Director – Events

Judy Mullinix
Development Director – Database Management

Renee Nelms
Development Director – Grants

Mary Parris
Administrative Assistant

Suzanne Anderson
Vice President of Field Services

Norm Arias
Director of Field Services

Jo Bradley
Director of Games Management

Martha Dorow
Project UNIFY Coordinator

Jody Foshee
Administrative Assistant

Sue Galkantas
Director of Sports and Training

Molly Kuchar
Director of Program Training

Mike Sullivan
Director of Outreach and Families

These are the contacts at the state level. Get to emailing and calling! Let’s make this “lottery” nonsense history!

From Ear 2 Ear,



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