TO:                   Montana Middle Schools and High Schools

FROM:             Joe Moriarty, Megan Hill, Donnie Wetzel

RE:                   MBI/MTSS, SOMT, IEFA Inclusive Youth Days

DATE:              September 2018

Greetings!  The Office of Public Instruction and Special Olympics Montana (SOMT) are once again proud to sponsor Inclusive Youth Days in four different locations for the fall of 2018. Inclusive Youth Days has positively impacted schools across Montana for the past 16 years and continues its mission to create a student forum for cultivating leadership skills, networking, service learning, and building the confidence to make positive contributions to both school and community.

The theme for the 2018 Inclusive Youth Days is– Embracing Diversity Through Story. The MBI/MTSS is continuing its partnership with SOMT’s Unified Champion Schools program, under the leadership of Megan Hill and the amazing Youth Activation Committee (YAC). We are honored to be working with another group this year as well, the Youth Leadership Group overseen by Mr. Donnie Wetzel. The student- led groups have put on some phenomenal conferences over the last couple of years and we look forward to the additional synergy they will bring to this year’s Inclusive Youth Days. This team effort will include a number of student-led activities. Please note that schools may be contacted in advance to solicit some additional student involvement and leadership with a number of the planned activities.  

An invitation is extended to you and your middle school and high school students to participate in the 2018 Inclusive Youth Days. Two of our conferences this year will be one day events held in Polson and Butte respectively. Schools can check in from 7:30 a.m. to 8:20 a.m. with the event beginning promptly at 8:30. A breakfast snack and lunch will be provided. The one-day events will conclude no later than 4:30.  The two-day events will start on the respective Sunday with check in beginning at 1:00 p.m. and the official start at 2:00 p.m. A meal will be served on Sunday evening at 5:30 p.m. with activities concluding around 8:00 p.m.  On Monday, we will begin at 8:00 a.m. and conclude by 2:30 p.m. Both breakfast and lunch will be provided on Monday. Your school will be reimbursed for travel, meals and lodging expenses. Schools will receive a district reimbursement form at the event. Following are the dates and locations: 

Dates                    City                      Venue                                      Phone

10/22                    Polson                  KwaTaqNuk Resort      800-882-6363

10/29                    Butte                    Copper King Inn           406-565-5001

11/4-11/5              Great Falls           Holiday Inn                   406-727-7200

12/2-12/3              Billings                 Billings Convention Ctr 406-248-7151

Ask for the Inclusive Youth Days block of rooms when making your team’s lodging reservations (for two-day events).

Online Pre-registration
Please plan to attend this event and bring 5 to 12 student participants and attend the event at the location nearest to you. You may bring both a middle school team and a high school team with each having the 5-12 student participants. Inclusive Youth Days suggest at least one chaperone per 5 students.  In selecting your students, please include a broad spectrum of your student population, including student leaders and future student leaders.  A cross section of your student population is ideal in promoting diverse ideas and thoughts.

Registration Deadlines:

Polson:           10/16/18

Butte:             10/19/18

Great Falls:      10/26/18

Billings:           11/21/18

Please complete the online Registration form and submit by the given deadline indicating the number and names of both students and staff who will be attending.  This is important to adequately plan for meals and/or other activities. It will be necessary for us to cap the number of participants and that cap, depending on location and venue, may be reached before the registration deadline. Please get your registration in early to assure your school’s spot.

Online registration form, permission slip, and agenda link:

http://opi.mt.gov/Educators/Teaching-Learning/Special-Education/Montana-Behavioral-Initiative-MBI

 

FEATURED PRESENTERS

 

1. Oscar McBride, back by popular demand for the third year in a row, Oscar is beyond excited to promote diversity and acceptance as he continues to share his story with the Montana Youth. Oscar brings his experiences as a Division 1 athlete at the University of Notre Dame, a professional athlete in the NFL, teacher, coach, and educational leader.

2. Bruce Colton returns as one of our featured speakers and workshop facilitators. Bruce will once again deliver his passion for student health and wellness in his energetic and engaging style.

3. Megan Hill is the coordinator of the SOMT’s Unified Champion Schools and Youth Activation Committee. She will direct her student leadership group and serve as the main conference facilitator.

4. Donnie Wetzel is the American Indian Youth Development Coordinator at the Indian Ed division of OPI and will oversee his youth leadership group while inspiring through his own story.

5. A variety of student presenters and workshop facilitators

 

SOMT’s special invitation to become Unified Champion School:

The SOMT invites all MBI/MTSS inclusive schools to become Unified Champion Schools and take advantage of funding opportunities, resources and support through our programming. Through youth leadership, whole school engagement, and inclusive sport opportunities, students can be the drivers in creating an environment of inclusion in their school communities and beyond. As we write a new story, join the inclusion revolution and become part of the unified generation. For more information visit www.somt.org/ucs or contact unifiedschools@somt.org.

 

GENERAL INFORMATION
Inclusive Youth Days will once again feature Service Projects on Monday morning (for the two-day conferences).  Please come prepared to work. Naturally, some of the service sites will be outside and require participants to be weather ready.

As always, we appreciate your school bringing a couple of Door Prizes that will be given away throughout the event. 

We are also encouraging Inclusive Youth Days participants to gather non-perishable food items that will be donated to local food banks when the teams visit and volunteer.  This activity builds community and helps others in need.

SHARE OUT
We are extending an invitation to all schools to put together a “Share Out” which might include poster/presentation/video to share with other schools attending Inclusive Youth Days.

Please bring the signed permission forms and agenda to the Inclusive Youth Day meeting that you plan to attend.

Please use the hotel telephone numbers on the front page to make your lodging reservations.

 

CHECKLIST FOR ITEMS TO BRING TO YOUTH DAYS

    • Prizes
    • Non-perishable food items
    • Share out materials (poster(s), video, etc.)
    • Enthusiasm and Positive Energy
    • Willingness to be Student Leaders

 

 

 We look forward to seeing you this fall. It is your participation that gives this conference its effectiveness and powerful synergy.

For questions, please call (406) 581-1909 or email at joe.moriarty@mt.gov

                                           (406) 564-3637 or email at mhill@somt.org

 

 

  

 


"The Montana Office of Public Instruction provides vision, advocacy, support and leadership for schools and communities to ensure that all students meet today's challenges and tomorrow's opportunities."