Student DVD Helps Disabled Kids

February 28, 2007 (PRLEAP.COM) Education News
The parent of a child who attends P.S. 10 in Brooklyn, NY is a Video Production instructor at The Art Institute of New York City. P.S. 10 has a large population of students with various disabilities. The playground is in disrepair, and not suitable for many of the children. As a class project, the instructor, Susi Graf and her students, visited the school and created a very moving video about the school’s need for a barrier-free playground. Scenes of children looking longingly at equipment not in good repair, and not usable by them, are heart-wrenching.

After showing the video, school officials received a commitment for $250,000 via the CEC (Community Educational Council) from the New York City Department of Education School Construction Authority to fund a new playground. In addition, the video was shown to the staff at the office of the Brooklyn Borough President, Marty Markowitz. He is considering the request for a matching grant, subject to budgetary considerations by the New York City Council.

“The video played a substantial part in our quest for funding. Everyone was so moved by it. They saw students on the sidelines, and heard their voices. It was emotional and powerful and really got to everyone in the meeting,” said Laura Scott, Assistant Principal at P.S. 10. “Visitors and people from other schools and our central Department of Education offices are often so moved when they see it, they walk out with tears in their eyes, and a very positive feeling about our school.”

Funding processes move slowly. The new playground will be built, but the initial commitment will only begin to address the needs of these children.

Midge Elias
Director of Public Relations
The Art Institute of New York City
75 Varick Street 16th Floor
New York, NY 10013