Whether you're on your way to the library or stopping by City Hall, chances are you're driving by St. John Vianney School, located in the heart of Brookfield. This blog will provide insight into life and education at SJV, a 4K-8 educational anchor in Brookfield since 1957.
On January 13 students at St. John Vianney in grades five through eight experienced firsthand what it is like to play basketball in a wheelchair during an assembly presented by the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater Wheelchair Basketball Team. In the program called "Cornerstones for Success," the first part included a discussion about the lives and experiences of the student-athletes as well as a question and answer period where the students gained knowledge about disabilities. The second part of the assembly included a team demonstration and the opportunity for some SJV students to hop into a wheelchair and test their skills. Five different groups of students were able to play against the UW-Whitewater team while the other students watched and cheered. The thrilling assembly ended with five teachers being called up to play against the UW-Whitewater team.
Many SJV students are involved in sports, so this seemed like a great way to teach them about acceptance and how everyone has challenges that must be overcome. One UW-Whitewater student-athlete in particular spoke about how he played football for ten years – all the way through high school – and then lost his left leg while serving our country in Iraq. His very touching message was to recognize that there may be tragedies in life you just can’t change, but that doesn’t mean they have to change you.
The UW-Whitewater men’s wheelchair basketball team has eight national championships and many of the players have played in the wheelchair Olympics. The women's team is in it's third year. For more information about the program you can visit the Cornerstones website: http://www.uww.edu/recsports/wcathletics/cornerstones/index.html. There are also some incredible videos about the team and the players on YouTube if you search UW Whitewater wheelchair basketball.