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2024 Cool School Challenge

Welcome to the Cool School Challenge in illinois, where we bring the fun of the Plunge right to your school’s campus! Across the state, students and faculty participate in the illinois Law Enforcement Torch Run Polar Plunge via the Cool School Challenge to support the athletes of Special Olympics illinois.

18

Cool School Plunges

748

People Registered

Register at Your School

Not a part of the Cool School Challenge? Find out how to get involved.

HOW TO GET INVOLVED

Step 1: Find a Team Captain

Appoint a designated staff member as Team Captain who will serve as the point of contact between the school and Special Olympics Illinois

Step 2: Contact Us!

Contact Jen Kelso, jkelso@soill.org, or your Regional Plunge Director to get your School registered and a fundraising site created. Pick a date for your school to TAKE THE PLUNGE!!

Step 3: Register Students & Staff

Once your school’s fundraising site has been created, register students and staff who are committed to raising a $100 minimum each

Take the cool school challenge

The Cool School Challenge creates whole-school engagement and an exciting way to give back, all while teaching students about the importance of inclusion and making a positive impact. 

How does it work? It’s simple. You work with us to host a Cool School Challenge Polar Plunge on your school’s campus. Specific extracurricular groups or the whole student body (and faculty of course) work together to raise money and support the athletes of Special Olympics Illinois. Click the button below to get started and find out how you can BE COOL and TAKE THE PLUNGE with your school this year. 

Find My SchoolGet More Info

Register at Your School

Find the location where you want to take your ice dip for 2024

Creekside MS - Region B

Fri, Feb 23
Goal:$3,000(299%)

York HS - Region C

Fri, Feb 23
Goal:$31,000(87%)

Andrew HS - Region E

Thu, Feb 29
Goal:$25,000(109%)

TRIAD HS - Region J

Sat, Mar 02
Goal:$10,000(105%)

Lemont HS - Region E

Wed, Mar 06
Goal:$15,000(72%)

Shepard HS- Region E

Thu, Mar 07
Goal:$20,000(66%)

Edwardsville HS - Region J

Fri, Mar 08
Goal:$10,000(27%)

MacArthur MS - Region B

Fri, Mar 08
Goal:$12,500(102%)

Byron HS - Region A

Fri, Mar 15
Goal:$11,000(12%)

Keller Jr. High - Region B

Fri, Mar 15
Goal:$12,500(129%)

Downers Grove South HS - Region C

Wed, Mar 20
Goal:$20,000(7%)

Trico HS - Region K

Wed, Mar 20
Goal:$5,000(28%)

Dixon HS - Region A

Fri, Mar 22
Goal:$10,000(0%)

Central HS - Region J

Fri, Mar 22
Goal:$5,000(27%)

Metea Valley HS - Region C

Fri, Mar 22
Goal:$8,000(0%)

Bradley-Bourbonnais HS - Region E

Fri, Mar 29
Goal:$10,000(0%)

Homewood-Flossmoor HS - Region E

Fri, Apr 05
Goal:$20,000(1%)

Participant Testimonials

I have had the incredible privilege of participating in the Cool School Challenge and I can honestly say it was a life-changing experience! This event seamlessly blends fun and purpose by spreading inclusion throughout our district and community while raising money for Special Olympics Illinois. The Cool School Challenge is not just an event; it's a celebration of unity, compassion, and the boundless power of community. I am grateful to have been a part of this impactful initiative, and I can't wait to continue plunging each year for an even brighter, more inclusive future!

Kayla Magruder, TeacherEdwardsville School District #7

The highlight of the Cool School Challenge is seeing all the diverse clubs within a school (social, academic, and athletic) bond together as one unit, showcasing their school spirit in support of the athletes of Special Olympics Illinois while participating in such an extreme event as the Polar Plunge. I don’t believe you can find another event out there that can bring an entire school together like this! It’s truly amazing!

Sgt. Bill DevineIllinois LETR Director

Last year we made a concerted effort to raise the profile and then donations for our ThunderPlunge. We know how much the Special Olympics Illinois programs mean to our traditional athletes, Unified partners, and our community as a whole. Special Olympics Illinois gives so much to our students that we wanted to find a way to support the organization in a larger capacity. We also know that at Andrew we focus on community and when our community identifies a need they would rally together to help in any way possible. We asked our co-curricular clubs to work together to increase the participation and donations for the event. Boy, did it work! We had more students participate, and then raise more money than we have ever in the past. We are excited about what is ahead of us in terms of community and support for the Special Olympics organization.

Tim Dalton, Assistant PrincipalVictor J. Andrew High School

Earn COOL Incentives

$250

Chill out your new inflatable sofa

$500

Jam out with your new speaker

$1,000

Stay cozy with your new blanket hoodie

Cool School Contests

Regional

 Raise the most money in your region and earn a pizza party for your Plunge team!

Statewide

Be the Cool School that raises the most money in the state, earn a SCHOOL-WIDE pizza party and Cool School Trophy!

Cool School Leaderboards

School

1.Andrew HS - Region E

$27,257Raised(109%)

2.York HS - Region C

$26,859Raised(87%)

3.Keller Jr. High - Region B

$16,090Raised(129%)

4.Shepard HS- Region E

$13,120Raised(66%)

5.MacArthur MS - Region B

$12,783Raised(102%)

6.Lemont HS - Region E

$10,770Raised(72%)

7.TRIAD HS - Region J

$10,494Raised(105%)

8.Creekside MS - Region B

$8,960Raised(299%)

Individual

1.Larry Mueller a.k.a Santa|TLS Plunging Mentors

Raised $250
Raised $100
Raised $500
Raised $1,000
Raised $2,500
Team Captain
1st Time Plunger
Raised $5,000

2.Sarah Huber|Senior Class

1st Time Plunger
Raised $250
Raised $100
Raised $500
Raised $1,000
Raised $2,500
Team Captain
Raised $5,000

3.Nathan Andrews|York Staff

1st Time Plunger
Raised $250
Raised $100
Raised $500
Raised $1,000
Raised $2,500
Team Captain
Raised $5,000

4.Anastasia Kladis

1st Time Plunger
Raised $250
Raised $100
Raised $500
Raised $1,000
Team Captain
Raised $2,500
Raised $5,000

5.Franco Bibbiano|Junior Class

Team Captain
1st Time Plunger
Raised $250
Raised $100
Raised $500
Raised $1,000
Raised $2,500
Raised $5,000

Resources

Downloadable Guide

Read through this information to learn more about the Cool School Challenge and how it will work at your school.

DOWNLOAD PDF

Communication Toolkit

Visit our Polar Plunge Resources page for our social media toolkit and other fundraising resources

VIEW TOOLKIT

Become A unified champion school

The Unified Champion Schools strategy works to further develop inclusive learning and social environments for all students, with and without disabilities. By utilizing any of the three. components - Unified sports, whole-school engagement, and inclusive youth leadership - schools can elevate the inclusion and unification among their students as well as further social emotional learning for all.

Presenting Sponsor

Statewide Sponsors