Students Celebrate Neurodiversity

Freshmen Laura Avliyakhanova and Nadia Heslin chat in the hallway in their tie dye t-shirts.


            Play Unified dedicated the week of March 28 to April 1 to recognize neurodiversity at the high school. The week led up to the Wizards vs. Faculty basketball game, a big fundraiser organized by the Special Education Parent Teacher Association.

            Each day of the week had its own theme: camo day on Monday to represent hidden disabilities, tie-dye Tuesday to represent the blending and inclusion of all students, mix and match on Wednesday to represent individuality and uniqueness, neon day on Thursday to highlight and celebrate differences and neurodiversity, and Wizard’s Day on Friday.

            The colors for Wizard’s Day carried symbolic meaning. “Red represents the Autism Spectrum, yellow represents friendship, and purple represents our school,” said senior Kelly Higgins, a member of Play Unified.

            The Play Unified students researched each theme in order to determine what each day would represent. As Higgins elaborated, “It is important to do this because our mission is to include others without intolerance and discrimination.”

Sophomore Charlotte Hankenson shows off her Muppet socks on mix and match day to support individuality.

            Many students and staff participated in dressing to the week’s themes. “I think it’s important to show our support to those different than us,” said sophomore Ajay Singh, one of the many students who dressed in the week’s themes, “You never know what someone could be struggling with.”

            “It was decided to have a neurodiversity week because we wanted to take the opportunity to educate and bring light to the many different minds and abilities of students in our school and people all over the world,” said senior Lillian Adelfio, another member of Play Unified. “A spirit week such as this one allows OBHS students to learn about what makes some of their classmates unique and can bring about a greater sense of inclusion.”

Posted on 4/26/22

Photos by Daniella Borovskaia and Blaire Reklaitis

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