Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA) and Section 504Reasonable Accommodations
What is Section 504 ?Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 isa national law that protects qualifiedindividuals from discrimination based on theirdisability.Section 504 forbids organizations andemployers from excluding or denyingindividuals with disabilities an equalopportunity to receive program benefits andservices. It defines the rights of individualswith disabilities to participate in, and haveaccess to, program benefits and services.
How does the ADA affect postsecondary schools ?Title II of the ADA covers state funded schoolssuch as universities, community colleges andvocational schools. Title III of the ADA coversprivate colleges and vocational schools. If a schoolreceives federal dollars regardless of whether it isprivate or public it is also covered by theregulations of Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Actrequiring schools to make their programsaccessible to qualified students with disabilities.
As students and theirfamilies prepare for thetransition fromsecondary school topostsecondary optionsthey often find they areless familiar with theprotections provided bythe Americans withDisabilities Act (ADA)and Section 504 of theRehabilitation Act.
Although protections exist in higher education, students have considerablymore responsibility to request and design their ownaccommodations and this responsibility is ongoing.
At the time of admission, please do notpromise students specific accommodations.The student MUST first meet with theDisability Services Coordinator to discussapplication criteria and accommodations.
Who is Protected by ADA ?To be protected by the ADA, onemust have a disability or have arelationship or association with anindividual with a disability.
How is “Disability” Defined?• A person who has a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities• A person who has a history or record of such an impairment• A person who is perceived by others as having such an impairment.
When Are Students Protected by ADA and 504?• Students must meet admission or other standards determined by the school; and,• Students must have a disability• SWD must demonstrate all academic and technical skills required to perform essential functions.
What happens when Students WithDisabilities (SWD) no longer meet academic requirements?Postsecondary schools are not obligedto accept or retain persons with adisability because they are disabled.
What is required of the SWD?• SWD must demonstrate all academic and technical skills required to perform essential functions.• SWD must demonstrate they are qualified for admissions to a particular program or institution before there is consideration of the role of accommodations in reducing the impact of their disabilities.
SWD are held to identical technicaland academic standards and must demonstrate essential functions SWD should NEVER assume requirements (such as math or foreign language) are waived because of their disability
What are academic & technical standards and essential functions?Technical Standards – Non academic requirements for admission or participation in a program. Examples include…• Health and strength requirements• Personal traits• Compliance with the student code of conduct
academic & technical standards and essential functions, cont.Academic Standards – include all academic requirements for participation in a program. Examples include…• Passing all required courses• Completing all requirements within classes• Participating in internships and other service learning experiences• Meeting GPA requirements
academic & technical standards and essential functions, cont.• Attending class• Adhering to deadlines for degree completion• Remaining academically qualified from admission to graduation even though standards progressively increase.
academic & technical standards and essential functions, cont.Essential Functions – Elements considered fundamental to performance of a job or academic requirement. Examples include…• Learning• Demonstration of skills and personal strategies• Participation in the classroom environment• Laboratory activities and fieldwork
academic & technical standards and essential functions, cont.• Basic skills required for practice and professional certification or licensure.• SWD who do not meet essential functions are not otherwise “qualified” and are not accommodated under the law.
Must students disclose the existence of their disabilities?• To obtain services, SWD must disclose their disabilities to the appropriate personnel• SWD must provide all documentation required by the institution• If a person obviously uses a wheelchair or is blind or deaf, no further documentation may be necessary• SWD must specifically request academic accommodations
What is the disclosure procedure forBaker SWD?• SWD complete the BAKER COLLEGE Disability Services REQUEST FORM and submit it to the Disability Services Coordinator• SWD requesting services will be contacted by the Disability Services Coordinator, if needed, to review the students’ needs and possible accommodations
Disclosure procedure for Baker SWD, cont.• SWD must provide formal documentation (such as diagnosis by a medical doctor, psychologist, psychiatrist, school psychologist) of their disability• If no documentation is available, it is the responsibility of the student to have new documentation prepared. This can mean paying to have an appropriate professional conduct a new evaluation• Students who choose to disclose to their instructors that they have accommodations will present an Accommodations Letter listing the
ConfidentialityInstructors• Information regarding students’ disabilities will NOT be disclosed to instructors• Information regarding specific approved accommodations WILL be disclosed to instructors at the discretion of students approved for services
Confidentiality, cont.Parents• No longer permitted to register their children for disability service• No longer permitted to receive reports about their children’s academic progress or use of accommodations• No longer permitted to demand new or additional services
Baker College of Flint Volunteer Note Taker Instructions for InstructorsDateInstructor’s Name Class SectionStudent Requiring a Note Taker:Dear Instructor,You have received this letter because you will have a student (see above) with a disability requiring a note takerin your class. Please recruit a volunteer note taker at the beginning of class. Volunteer note takers will receive agift at the end of the Quarter. Volunteer hours are beneficial for use on scholarship applications, resumes, andpublic service requirements. Note takers should have very good attendance in class.When you ask your class for a volunteer, please remember the identity of the student receiving notes isconfidential. The note taker must sign the note taker agreement (in the packet) and deliver it to the AcademicOffice. You will also be given a packet of carbon note taker paper to give to the note taker. Let the note takerknow for whom s/he is note taking by showing him/her the student’s picture from your attendance roster.If you are unable to get a note taker or do not need a note taker for your class, please check the appropriate boxbelow and return this form to the Academic Office.I have recruited , UIN: to be the note taker.□ I was unable to get a volunteer to take notes.□ I will give the student a copy of my lecture notes.□ This student is not in my class.□ Other:If you have any questions, please call or email Terry Love (810 766-4113 firstname.lastname@example.org), or LoriCrawford-Milbrot (810 766-4126 email@example.com).Please return this completed form to the Disability Services Coordinator, Academic Office.
What kinds of accommodations may SWD receive?Academic• Course substitutions that meet the goals of the requirement• Modifications to methods of instruction• Increased time to complete course• Extended examination time• Alternative testing formats• Alternative testing arrangements
What kinds of accommodations may SWD receive?Technical• Note taker• Writer for Exams – dyslexia, physical impairments• Interpreter• Videos (Math, Medical, & Accounting)• Tape recorder• Magnifying Screen• Assistive listening systems – FM Receiver• Textbooks on Tape• TTY
What kinds of accommodations maySWD receive in the Learning Support Center? Software • PLATO • Math Tutorials • Chemistry • Jaws • Kurzweil Reader
What kinds of accommodations maySWD receive in the Learning Support Center?• Extra tutoring time• Academic Skills Workshops• Testing Accommodations• In-class orientations and workshops on LSS services
What is NOT an accommodationPostsecondaryinstitutions are notobligated to provideaccommodations of apersonal nature or thoseneeded for personalstudy or to enhancepersonal competency
What is NOT an accommodationExamples include:• Psychological Evaluation• Care attendants and coaches• Personal computers and software• Wheelchairs• Readers for personal pleasure or study
What is NOT an accommodation, cont.• Monitoring academic progress or personal conduct• Personal counseling• Remediation• Tutoring• Typing papers• Wake-up Calls
Conclusion• There is no guarantee under the ADA and 504 that SWD will succeed in higher education, even with accommodations• Postsecondary accommodations are outcome neutral – leveling the playing field “sink or swim”• In higher education, accommodations and services are described as effective when they achieve their nondiscriminatory goal & provide access to programs and activities to qualified SWD
Conclusion• Services must be provided unless doing so would result in a fundamental alteration of the program or would result in undue financial or administrative burdens• Institutions of higher education have the right to protect their programs and services from lowered or substantially altered standards
Questions?If you have questions regarding Disability Servicesat Baker College of Flint you may contact:Nancy Daily, Disability Services Coordinatorat (810) 766-4137 or firstname.lastname@example.org orLori Crawford-Milbrot, Career AssessmentCoordinator at: (810) 766-4126 email@example.com
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