Published in WNYC News - Costs Soar to Send Students with Disabilities to Private Schools

New York Times Editorial
January 12, 2014

"The treatment of disabled students should be a source of national shame. They represent 12 percent of students in the country, but they make up 25 percent of students receiving multiple out-of-school suspensions and 23 percent of students subjected to a school-related arrest."

In 2010 at the annual YAI Network's 31st Annual International Conference Decade of Decisions: Moving Forward in Developmental and Learning Disabilities, George Zelma presented and discussed the documentary film Faces of Autism –  filmed in Long Island, New York and Budapest Hungary.  Faces of Autism (Educating the Maintstream)  is a documentary film shot both in the U.S. and abroad that follows individuals on the spectrum. The film is intended to teach mainstream students and teachers about the problems faced by students with Autism/Aspergers and other spectrum disorders to make a successful transition into mainstream and self-sufficiency as the law intends.   

Mr. Zelma has also produced other award winning films, including "Section 504 — Equalizer for the Disabled" and "Access to Emergency Treatment."  He has directed a documentary "Deaf You?" for the New York State Bar Association and the Governor's Committee on Quality Care. 

A common denominator in these film projects is to see the world as the student or adult with a disability does.  Grasping the point of view of the student with a disability gives the viewer a better understanding of the obstacles that can and must be addressed to “level the playing field” and increase opportunities for success, independence and self-sufficiency as IDEA, 504 and ADA provide.

Films from George Zelma can be seen on YouTube:

The Faces of Autism - Teaching the Mainstream

Access to Emergency Treatment Deaf / Hearing Impaired

Section 504 Equalizer for the Disabled  

Disability and the Law with Mario Cuomo  (Director, George Zelma)