1. What are the Federal Laws regarding people with disabilities?
Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973: “No otherwise qualified person with a disability in the United States…shall, solely by reason of …disability, be denied the benefits of, be excluded from participation in, or be subjected to discrimination under any program or activity receiving federal financial assistance.”
The ADA Amendments Act of 2008 (ADA-AA) provides protection from discrimination for individuals on the basis of disability and amends both the ADA of 1990 and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act.
- Amendments significantly expand the protections for those diagnosed with an impairment.
- Has resulted in colleges working with a larger number of students covered by federal disability laws.
2. How do I refer a student to the Center for Accessibility Resources & Services/DHHS?
Sample language in response to a disclosure might be:
“Thank you for coming to me if you know or think you may have a disability. The Center for Accessibility Resources & Services is located in the Beharkis Student Services Center, in room SC111. You may be eligible for “accommodations” in your course(s). Would you like information regarding this office?”
3. What if I suspect a student has a disability but has not disclosed it to me?
If the student has not disclosed and you suspect a disability or suspect a student has hearing loss, a general announcement periodically regarding various college services may be a good reminder. Also, brochures from our office can be obtained and made available to students in your class.
4. When is it appropriate to accommodate a student?
The Center for Accessibility Resources & Services/DHHS will determine eligibility and the student will give you a “Faculty Letter” containing specific accommodation information. Online Accommodation Plans are emailed to instructors. If you have not received a “Faculty Letter” please refer the student to our office before accommodating.
5. Do accommodations give students an unfair advantage?
Reasonable accommodations provide equal access to an education; they do not provide an unfair advantage or lower academic standards. If the accommodation interferes with the technical standards, please do not hesitate to call the Center for Accessibility Resources & Services or Deaf and Hard of Hearing Services.
Center for Accessibility Resources & Services: Student Services Center SC111 978-556-3654 firstname.lastname@example.org
Deaf and Hard of Hearing Services: Student Services Center SC110 978-241-7045 DIRECT LINE (VP/Voice)
“Partnering with students with disabilities and the college community to provide access, services and awareness”