ESTABLISHING SERVICES WITH THE ADA OFFICE
Your first step in requesting services will be to arrange an appointment with the Director of Special Populations. It is advisable to make an initial appointment before the semester begins. Call the Director of Special Populations at 256.352.8052. If accommodations are needed to take the placement test, the student must schedule the appointment at least one week prior to the date of the placement test. Documentation should be brought to this interview if it has not already been received.
Students who are seeking accommodations and services on the basis of a disability are required to submit documentation to verify their eligibility for services. Typically, a licensed psychologist, physician, or other appropriate professional provides the evaluation, diagnosis, and recommended accommodations in a detailed report. The ADA Office is not responsible for determining the nature of an individual’s disability. The ADA Office maintains the right to reject documentation that does not verify a student’s disability or delineate reasonable accommodations. Documentation should not be over three years old.
Documentation accepted by the ADA Office is valid as long as a student is continuously enrolled at the College. However, if there is a break in the student’s enrollment, he/she may need to present updated documentation to receive services. Disability-related information received to support requests for accommodations are treated as confidential and shared only on a need-to-know basis. The information may not be released to an outside third party without written consent of the individual.
Adherence to the following procedures insures the best possible service the institution can provide.
The Director of Special Populations meets individually with a student to discuss accommodations and assists the student in completing required forms. The Director determines reasonable academic accommodations for a student, taking into consideration recommendations from the physician, psychologist or other professional who diagnosed the student’s disability. Accommodations previously used in educational settings with the student will be taken into consideration. Although some students may have similar diagnoses, each student is treated as an individual because accommodations must be tailored to individual needs.
The ADA Office recommends reasonable accommodations by preparing a letter addressed to the instructor of each class for which the student requests accommodations. An instructor is not obliged to provide accommodations to a student with a disability until he/she receives the ADA Office accommodation letter from the student. In addition, it is the student’s responsibility to discuss scheduling and details of the requested accommodations with his/her instructor(s). If a student delivers an accommodation letter to an instructor within a few days prior to an assignment or exam, the instructor may not be able to provide the optimal accommodation requested. Accommodations are not retroactive.
Responsibility of the Student
Receiving academic accommodations at Wallace State is a 5-step procedure:
- Students must complete an accommodation request form from the ADA Office each semester.
- Students may hand-deliver the letter or have it sent via WSCC intra-mail to each instructor.
- Students must arrange a meeting with their instructor(s) to discuss the proposed accommodations listed in the letter.
- Students must make the first initial contact with the instructor. The student and the instructor discuss the students’ accommodations for the class. Any accommodations needed for testing needs to be decided at that point. (a) It is the students’ responsibility to start the process for individualized proctored exams. A copy of the procedure is in the handbook. Students must complete request form, have their instructor complete his/her section of request form and, then, submit the form to the ADA Office.
- Students report any concerns about accommodations to the ADA Office as soon as possible.
Students with disabilities must maintain the same responsibility for their education as students who do not have disabilities. This includes maintaining the same academic levels, maintaining appropriate behavior and giving timely notification of any special needs. Utilize accommodations available to you; asking for assistance is not a sign of weakness or dependence. It is our goal to help you achieve your educational pursuits.
Questions and concerns regarding accommodations and services for students who have a disability should be directed initially to the ADA Office.
At the beginning of each semester, students should ensure a copy of the accommodation letter has been sent to the instructor of each class where accommodations need to be made. Students and instructors will discuss the requested accommodations. If there is disagreement, the student or instructor should contact the Director of Special Populations.
Steps in Conflict Resolution
- The Director of Special Populations meets with the Department Chair. If an agreement is not reached with the student, he or she may submit an appeal, in writing, to the Vice President for Students within three (3) working days of the decision of the Department Chair.
- The Vice President for Students will review the student’s information, may conduct further investigation as needed, and will issue a written decision to the student within five (5) working days of receipt of the appeal. If the student disagrees with the decision, the student may submit an appeal, in writing to the President.
The College will make every reasonable effort to address a student’s concerns promptly to minimize the effect on course participation.
During the conflict resolution process, the student is entitled to receive all accommodations recommended by the Director of Special Populations. It is important that concerns are addressed promptly so that the student’s participation in courses is not affected.
For Wallace State’s Service and Support Animal Policy, see p. 68.