Students at RAIL School speak out ahead of Unified Sports Day

Preview of RAIL Unified Sports Day on ABC 6 News Good Morning at 630

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(ABC 6 News) – The Rochester Academy for Independent Living, or RAIL, will be hosting an Unified Sports Day on Wednesday, May 15th starting at 9:00am.

The RAIL School is offered by Rochester Public Schools to help young adults with disabilities integrate themselves into both, the community and work setting.

It’s through this program that student’s develop the necessary skills for independent living, and social skills needed to be active and productive members in their communities. Faculty at RAIL say programs like this are vital to student development.

“This population is forgotten about sometimes, and without the support they can’t keep improving and increasing awareness in the communities. The support not only monetary, but as a human being and people need to be apart of that,” expressed Lori Jensen, Social Studies Teacher at RAIL.

This is only the second annual sports day for the school, and about 70 students are expected to participate; What makes the day ‘unified’ are the roughly 15 other high school students from around the Rochester area, who will be joining in on the fun.

ABC 6 News spoke with a couple students about which athletic events they’re most looking forward to ahead of the event.

“There’s a lot to choose from, I like everything, every station I like but my favourite is the long jump,” said Kevin Guzman, student in the program.

“Tee-ball,” said student Addie Kocayou.

There are so many other events like ball toss, basketball and even relay races!

The sports day in 2023 was the biggest community event for the RAIL program and a great way for both students and staff to connect.

“I learn so much everyday, they make a difference every day to all of us; I know the staff here is amazing and the kids they make it what it is. It’s a great place to come to everyday, I never dread going to work,” said Jensen.

The Unified Sports Day event will start around 9:00am on Wednesday, May 15th at the RAIL building near the Friedell Building.