Assign modules on offcanvas module position to make them visible in the sidebar.

Our school

NOLA-PS Awarded $25,000 by Special Olympics Louisiana During 3rd Annual Dr. Rosalynne B. Dennis Fitness Challenge Kick-Off

(Click for pictures and see video here.)

(New Orleans – March 23, 2023) — $25,000 – that's the amount of money NOLA Public Schools (NOLA-PS) was awarded this morning by the Special Olympics Louisiana Unified Champion Schools program. The funds will help support this year's 3rd Annual Dr. Rosalynne B. Dennis Fitness Challenge for students with exceptional needs.

"I'd like to thank Special Olympics Louisiana for continuing to support our mission this year," said NOLA-PS Deputy Superintendent Dr. Fateama Fulmore. "This is an opportunity for our students to find joy in playing, connecting with their peers, and learning about health and fitness in a fun and interactive way."

NOLA-PS' Dr. Rosalynne B. Dennis Fitness Challenge promotes inclusion, healthy eating, and physical fitness. With these funds, the District will be able to provide awards to students who excel during the challenge, such as healthy snacks, teacher incentives, student prizes, and a few lucky schools will win a sponsored field day and/or equipment to build a sensory room.

In total this school year, Special Olympics Louisiana has given a total of $44,000 to district schools, with $19,000 being previously awarded to schools. This grant money has helped with programs for students with exceptionalities and has helped to promote inclusive sports across the district.

"We are proud to partner with NOLA Public Schools in support of the Dr. Rosalynne B. Dennis Fitness Challenge. One thing I love about this challenge is its focus on inclusion. The fitness challenge is for all students, with and without intellectual disabilities. It's a competition that reinforces the importance of school community and pride," said Fallon Bucker Ward, SOLA Unified Champion City School Manager. "I'd like to give a shout out to all the phenomenal administrators who have allowed this challenge to unify their campuses and give students an avenue to compete."

11-hundred students across 28 District schools are participating in the Fitness Challenge, including St. Michael Special School and a group of three to five year olds, under the NOLA-PS local education agency, will be participating in the 3rd Annual Dr. Rosalynne B. Dennis Fitness Challenge. Each school's fitness challenge administrator will devise individualized fitness plans for each child and determine which exercises and challenges best fit into the students' individual education plans, as well as their adaptive physical education programs.

Exercises/challenges could range from jumping jacks, high knee kicks, sit-ups, push-ups, etc. to a bean bag toss and arm strengthening exercises for children who are in wheelchairs.

The Special Olympics Louisiana Unified Champion Schools program is aimed at promoting social inclusion through intentionally planned and implemented activities affecting systems-wide change.

"Dr. Rosalynne B. Dennis compassionately served our District for more than 40 years. She made it her life's mission to ensure children with disabilities were provided exceptional educational services, while also promoting initiatives, such as Special Olympics Louisiana, that focused on their health and safety," said NOLA-PS Chief Student Support Officer, Dr. Shayla Guidry Hilaire. "Alongside her family, we will continue to honor her hard work and dedication through this annual initiative."

As students with disabilities and general education peers work together on social skills, they will forge lifelong relationships. In addition, the challenge will also encourage a healthy lifestyle at school, as well as at home through the introduction of weekly exercises and healthy snacks, while addressing and promoting gross and fine motor skills.

With sports and inclusion as the foundation, Unified Champion Schools offer a unique combination of effective activities that equip young people with tools and training to create sports, classrooms, and school climates of acceptance. These are school climates where students with disabilities feel welcome and are routinely included in, and feel a part of, all activities, opportunities, and functions.

NOLA-PS is grateful for the support and the organization is excited to, once again, partner with us for this annual event.

The fitness challenge will conclude at the end of April, and prizes will be awarded to the participants during the Closing Ceremony on May 12.


About NOLA Public Schools: NOLA Public Schools (NOLA-PS) is the public school district for Orleans Parish. It includes the district's administration and elected school board, known as the Orleans Parish School Board (OPSB). NOLA-PS currently oversees 72 public schools and is led by Superintendent Dr. Avis Williams, the first woman in the District's 181 years to serve as its permanent superintendent.

For more information, visit For updates, follow NOLA Public Schools on Facebook @NOLAPublicSchools, Instagram @nolaps and Twitter @NOLAPSchools. 

Stay Informed

When you subscribe to the blog, we will send you an e-mail when there are new updates on the site so you wouldn't miss them.

NOLA-PS Superintendent Announces Siting Recommenda...
OPSB Thanks Governor for Rejecting Folgers Coffee ...


Report Fraud

Department of Children and Family Services

Call 1-855-4LA-KIDS (1-855-452-5437) to report child abuse and neglect.

Report Abuse

Hotline Number for Parents

School-based issues or concerns from parents

24-hour Hotline Number for Community

School and District based concerns, feedback, & inquiries from school staff or community members

External Resources

NOLA Public Schools. Every Child. Every School. Every Day.

2401 Westbend Parkway
New Orleans, Louisiana 70114

Phone: 504-304-5612

Phone: 504-304-3520

Hotline Number for Parents

School-based issues or concerns from parents

24-hour Hotline Number for Community
District based community concerns, feedback, & inquiries from school staff or community members