Bucks IU at Samuel Everitt celebrates March Madness

Bucks County IU 22  |  Posted on

Bryson Wilson shows off his form as he sinks a shot.

March Madness recently took hold of the students at the Bucks County Intermediate Unit (Bucks IU) at Samuel Everitt school located in Levittown, Pennsylvania. The exhilaration generated by the annual college basketball tournament brought out some serious basketball skills and lots of smiles as the Samuel Everitt students went toe-to-toe with their teachers and support staff at their own March Madness basketball event on March 22.

Dr. Janean Ciancia, Bucks IU at Samuel Everitt Principal, stated  “This was an opportunity for teamwork and collaboration among our students and staff that helps teach and model working toward a common goal.”

Cheers of excitement reverberated around the gymnasium all afternoon as students took turns playing in the games or having fun working at various skill stations. Unlike the regular collegiate tournament, the emphasis of this March Madness was not on the final game scores. Instead, the focus was on what mattered most to the students and that was interacting with staff members outside of their regular class routines and having fun.

Bryson Wilson was one of the day’s bright stars on the Samuel Everitt court. He scored several times during his team’s game. “I did a lot of practicing,” Bryson (age ten) said. “It takes me a lot of time. You just focus and never give up.”

The students prepared for the March Madness basketball games by participating in skill clinics on March 15. Staff members helped the students work on their dribbling, passing and shooting skills in preparation for the day of the big games. To qualify to participate in the clinics and games, students earned points during the school week by completing their schoolwork, following directions, staying safe, and demonstrating responsibility and respectfulness.

Everitt student Carlisle Navedo (age nine) qualified for his March Madness game by staying focused in class during the week. He said his favorite part of the game is shooting the basketball and scoring. “It makes me feel good,” Carlisle said.

The Bucks IU at Samuel Everitt offers educational programs for students with autism, emotional needs and multiple disabilities. The school serves more than 150 students from kindergarten through 21 years of age from school districts in Bucks, Montgomery and Philadelphia counties.

Student Jameer Cunningham-Smith (age thirteen) says he loves to play basketball and getting the chance to take on his teachers. “It’s fun to play everyone to see how everyone else experiences it too,” he stated. The soon-to-be high school student said he appreciates all the Bucks IU at Samuel Everitt staff. “Thank you to everybody. They have helped me so much.”