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On Thursday 2nd November, the 14th Annual All Schools Sports Carnival was held at Sydney Olympic Park Athletics Centre. It was a resounding success, thanks to the collective efforts of all our students, teachers, and volunteers. It was a day filled with joy, enthusiasm, and sportsmanship that truly reflected the values and spirit of Aspect.

Each year, Aspect brings all nine schools together from around NSW and SA to participate in the largest autism-specific sports event in the southern hemisphere. Over 600 students, teachers and volunteers attended the event at the Athletics Centre of Sydney Olympic Park for a day of inclusivity and celebration. This year, we were fortunate to have over 60 corporate volunteers who generously contributed their time and energy, ensuring the day ran smoothly.

Olympic Park was abuzz with excitement as students competed in a variety of activities including obstacle races, inflatable unicorn races, tug o war, high jump, long jump and sprint races. We were lucky to have our community supporters Western Sydney Wanderers FC and Sense Rugby running tailored soccer and rugby activities on the day.

Research from the Aspect Research Centre for Autism Practice shows that young autistic children are keen to get more active in sports - about 74% want to be more involved than they are now. But they need more activities that are right for them. Aspect's Director of Education Maryanne Gosling says that a day like this means that our students have "every opportunity that every other child has in a school".

The activities ended with the iconic mascot race, where a mascot representative from each school faced off in an epic 100m sprint. The cheers were heard all across Sydney as Elmo, representing Aspect South East Sydney red team, crossed the finish line in first place.

A big thanks to ABC News for hanging out with us all day at the carnival. Watch the full coverage here: https://www.abc.net.au/news/2023-11-04/sporting-event-hopes-to-improve-participation-in/103065790

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