Who Cares About Kelsey?


This project was transferred to the Westchester Institute for Human Development in July 2021

Kelsey Carroll has one goal--to graduate from high school. But there are plenty of reasons why she shouldn’t. She attends a school with one of the highest dropout rates in New Hampshire and has dealt with homelessness, abuse, self-mutilation, and ADHD. As a freshman, she didn't earn a single academic credit, but she did get suspended for dealing drugs. Who Cares About Kelsey? is the story of Kelsey's transformation from a defiant “problem student” to a motivated, self-confident young woman. Along the way, critical figures in her life play important roles in an education revolution that’s about empowering—not overpowering—students with emotional/behavioral disabilities.

Watch the Trailer

Visit the who cares about kelsey? website

Film Goals

The overriding goal of the project is to create and disseminate an essential teaching tool that will be engaging to multiple audiences--university faculty, grade level and preschool educators and specialists, disability and mental health advocates, youth-serving organizations, public policy decision makers, community leaders, young people, families, and the general public.

This film and the accompanying educational and outreach materials spotlight research-based, best-practice approaches enabling schools, organizations, and individuals to:

  • Increase understanding of the challenges and benefits of including children with emotional/behavioral challenges in regular classrooms and centers;
  • Train students, self-advocates, families and professionals through coursework, seminars, workshops and conferences;
  • View examples of potential approaches to program-wide systems of discipline, support, and engagement;
  • Provide technical assistance to organizations and individuals to improve their capacity to support youth with emotional/behavioral challenges in school and community;
  • Serve as a resource for information to policymakers and government officials;
  • Disseminate information to families, consumers, community members, and professionals via the website, toolkits, educational guides, online discussions and videos, newsletters, press coverage, and social media;
  • Engage in collaborative activities and joint projects with organizations that share common goals;
  • Foster a broader dialogue about the benefits of including ALL young people in our schools and communities.

Supporters & Advisors

Lead Funders

Major Funders

Additional Funders

Advisory Board Members

  • Douglas Biklen, Syracuse University
  • Ted Bogosian, Documentary Filmmaker
  • Lucille Eber, Illinois PBIS Network
  • Michael Giangreco, University of Vermont
  • Thomas Hehir, Harvard University
  • Mary Beth Klotz, National Association of School Psychologists
  • Paula Kluth, Inclusive Education Consultant
  • Norman Kunc and Emma Van der Klift, Broadreach Training & Resources
  • Patti Ralabate, Center for Applied Special Technology
  • Jeff Sell, Parent Advocate
  • George Sugai, University of Connecticut
  • Barbara Trader, TASH

Resources & Links