On Wednesday, June 5, 2019, The Calais School community came together to celebrate the 8th annual Touchdown For Success Field Day. This year, students at the private non-profit special education school were lucky enough to spend the day with several NFL Players including Damian Gregory (Detroit, Tampa Bay, Miami), Sean Landeta (NY Giants, Philadelphia, St. Louis), Odessa Turner (NY Jets, San Francisco), Aaron Beasley (Jacksonville, NY Jets, Atlanta), and Plaxico Burress (Pittsburgh, NY Giants, NY Jets). The Touchdown For Success Student Field Day is a full-day event that provides students with special learning needs with a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to learn about fitness alongside some of the NFL's most celebrated athletes.
The entire event is focused around providing positive messages and inspiration through team building exercises, education, and physical fitness. The day starts with a circuit of 11 stations that challenge students to complete individual and group physical fitness activities. "Its exciting to see how the experience reaches our students both encouraging them to try new things and encouraging them to support one another. We are grateful for the time and hands-on support that the Gridiron Gang provided throughout the day" said Dr. Diane Manno, Principal at The Calais School.
The stations included NFL style drills and obstacle courses, a technology and gaming station sponsored by Microsoft, a basketball shoot-out, base running, frisbee bowling and more. Regular event sponsors, DJ Nellz and Acai Ya Later, kept the vibe happy and positive with music and refreshing acai bowls. The entire school and all visitors come together for the annual picture before moving inside for a nutritional lunch and an inspirational message and q & a session with NFL Alum Sean Landeta. Following lunch the students were invited to hang out with Damian, The Gridiron Gang, and the NFL players to get autographs, take pictures, and have fun.
"Touchdown For Success is one of the most inspiring events hosted at The Calais School. You can feel the excitement and gratitude from our students, faculty and staff. Damian and his Gridiron Gang always deliver a high energy experience. Though physically demanding, the day leaves students feeling empowered and engaged." explained David Leitner, Executive Director at The Calais School.
Former six-year veteran with Miami, Cleveland, Oakland, Tampa Bay, and Detroit, Damian Gregory touches lives through his Gridiron Gang non-profit. The Gridiron Gang combines athletics and academic empowerment to assist at risk youth by motivating and challenging them to tap into their unique abilities. This mission lead to a partnership with The Calais School and its Annual Touchdown for Success Student Field Day event. Damian's efforts have inspired other NFL Legends Community members to come out and join him.
About The Calais School
The Calais School is a leading private, non-profit therapeutic special education provider serving students in grades K through 12 Plus with multiple learning disabilities, as well as anxiety, mood, behavior and autism spectrum disorders. Our compassionate and highly trained staff are committed to cultivating student potential by providing individual attention, personalized learning programs, and support.