All higher education institutions will be legally obligated to make reasonable accommodations to individuals with disabilities. This requirement impacts schools ranging from any community college or vocational program to Harvard. Some schools are certainly more equipped to address the needs of disabled students than others; Galludett University staff know a thing or two about working with deaf individuals. But not all deaf persons attend Galludett, and not all students with special needs attend community college or vocational programs, though many do.
Any recommendation may or may not be successful, depending on the circumstances. The key questions to ask would include: 1) what is the disability, 2) to what extent would the disability adversely impact one's performance in a higher education setting, 3) what are the family goals as they save for this child, and 4) what can they afford to save.
You say a UTMA/UGMA trust fund "may" be a disaster. Where I could see it would be a disaster would be if this child had a severe disability (e.g., mental retardation) and it would be realistic to suspect the need for public assistance after the child leaves the K-12 public education system, as a 21-year old. I would not consider a 529 Plan in this circumstance, either; the plan should solely be based on the identified needs of the child.
Public schools are generally expected to work with students with disabilities until they reach 21 years of age, and social services often do not kick in until use of the public school programs have ended. If this were the circumstance, I would definately not complete a UTMA/UGMA plan. Any money in the child's name, when becoming an adult and requesting access to services, will adversely impact the availability to those services (e.g., medicaid, food coupons, living expenses.) The circumstances specific to this child should dictate what should be done.
Michael W. Kirlin