The University of Vermont's Center on Disability & Community Inclusion, in collaboration with the UVM Libraries Center for Digital Initiatives, announces the availability of a new digital resource: Absurdities and Realities of Special Education. Beginning in 1998, UVM professor of Special Education Michael F. Giangreco created the images and text to over 300 cartoons depicting issues and research findings about special education, schooling, and disability-related issues. These original sketches were redrawn (because they needed to be) by Michael's friend and collaborator, artist Kevin Ruelle of Ruelle Design and Illustration, Burlington, Vermont.
Between 1998 and 2007 the cartoons were distributed by Peytral Publications in form of four books and a searchable CD. In 2007 the distribution rights were transferred to Corwin Press. In 2019 Corwin Press allowed all of the cartoon books and CD to go out of print. While the copyright to all of the cartoons always had been (and still are) held by Michael Giangreco, now the distribution rights reverted exclusively to him.
The distribution of these cartoons through UVM Libraries Center for Digital Initiatives makes access to all 333 color cartoons free for educational and not-for-profit purposes (for example, in presentations, class materials, professional development sessions, non-profit organization's newsletters or websites) without the necessity to seek any additional permission from the copyright holder. Those who have an interest in using the cartoons for commercial purposes, such as reprinting in a commercially distributed book or on a commercial web site, may still contact Michael Giangreco to request permission.
The UVM Libraries Center for Digital Initiatives is pleased to help provide access to this set of cartoons and hopes that viewers will find creative ways to use them to advance inclusive access, supports, and education for individuals with disabilities.