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3.05.001.006 Services for Students with Disabilities

Category: ACADEMIC SERVICES
Section: STANDARDS OF ACADEMIC PROGRESS
Policy: Academic Progress Standards
Approved: 3/31/2016
Approved By: President's Staff

Mission

As an open door admission institution, the Community College of Beaver County is committed to the success of ALL students. The College makes every effort to provide accessible facilities and programs for individuals with disabilities as mandated by Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the Americans with Disabilities Amendment Act of 2008.  The Disability Support Services Office enhances this mission by providing reasonable accommodations to students with disabilities. The office works closely with faculty and staff in order to develop reasonable accommodations that allow students with disabilities to fully participate in all programs offered on campus. All reasonable accommodations are individualized and confidential based on the nature of the disability and the academic environment.  The procedure for requesting accommodations is as follows: 

A.      Disclosure

Once a student has completed a college admissions application and been admitted to the college, she/he must identify herself/himself and request accommodations in the Disability Support Services Office.  Students are encouraged to request services at least three weeks in advance of the semester (six weeks when requesting sign language interpreter), as some accommodations require planning in advance of the semester. 

B.      Documentation for Services

A student requesting accommodations must provide appropriate documentation from a licensed professional to certify the nature of the disability and recommended academic adjustments specific to the individual student. Appropriate documentation must be five years old or less, and may include a letter from a physician (on letterhead – prescription pad note will not be accepted); psychological assessment; evaluation reports from Blindness and Visual Services (BVS); audiologist reports; or another agency that has documented the disability. (A high school IEP is sufficient for documentation if the request is for extended testing time only). The college does not provide nor pay for such diagnostic testing.    

C.       Initial Assessment

At an intake interview in the Disability Support Services Office, the student and staff will discuss the student’s needs and possible accommodations. They will also review the college’s applicable accommodation procedures. The request for accommodations will be documented on a “Student Request for Services” form and will be forwarded, along with the appropriate documentation, to the Director of Student Support Services. 

D.      Authorization of Services

The Director of Student Support Services will authorize reasonable and appropriate requests. However, accommodations that fundamentally alter or change program or course standards and requirements will not be approved.    

E.       Notification of Services

Upon authorization of services, The Disability Support Services Office will send written notification of the authorized services to the student and will arrange the appropriate services and accommodations.  They will also distribute “Instructor Notification” forms which notify appropriate instructors of the student’s approved accommodations.    

F.       ESL Services

In order to receive appropriate educational assistance, students who speak English as their second language may also identify themselves and request services through the Disability Support Services Office. An Accommodation Specialist will assist the student with an individualized academic plan. 

G.     Confidentiality and Release of Information

The Disability Support Services Office is committed to ensuring all information regarding a student remains confidential as required or permitted by law. Only authorized staff has immediate access to student files, and any information regarding a disability gained from medical or psychological evaluations shall be considered confidential and shall be shared with others from within the institution on a need-to-know-basis only.  A student may sign a written consent form giving our office permission to discuss the disability with faculty and staff, parents, coaches, and/or advisors who require further information in order to promote collegiate success. 

H.     Grievance Process

The Community College of Beaver County does not discriminate on the basis of disability status in admissions, or access to its programs or activities. The Vice President for Student Services and Enrollment, located in Learning Resource Center, Library Room 205, 724-480-3423, has been designated to coordinate compliance with the nondiscrimination requirements contained in Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Americans with Disabilities Amendment Act of 2008, and applicable regulations. 

Any student, who believes that reasonable accommodations have not been met, or that he/she has been discriminated against on the basis of disability status, may file a complaint as follows:

1.      The complaint must be in writing to the Vice President for Student Services and Enrollment and include the name, address, and CCBC ID number of the person filing it.

2.      The complaint should briefly describe the alleged incident.

3.      The complaint should be filed within five working days of the alleged incident.

4.      An investigation will be conducted by the Vice President for Student Services and Enrollment and/or Affirmative Action Officer.

5.      Following the investigation, a written determination as to the validity of the complaint and description of the next steps, if any, will be issued to the complainant and respondent within five working days. 

I.        Appeals Process

1.       Any respondent or complainant shall have the right to appeal the result of a discrimination investigation or formal hearing. Appeals must be made, in writing, to the Vice President for Student Services and Enrollment (the Section 504 Coordinator for the College), Learning Resources center, room 205, ext. 3423 or the Affirmative Action Officer, Administrative Services Center, room 5106, ext. 3379, within five calendar days after notification of decision for the hearing.

2.   The Appeals Board will be appointed by the College President and consist of two students, two members of the faculty, and one administrator.

3.   An appeal shall be limited to a review of the verbatim record of the initial hearing and supporting documents for one or more of the following criteria, except as required to explain the basis of new evidence:

            a. New evidence comes to light which was not addressed at the hearing;

            b. Due process was not provided in accordance with College guidelines;

            c. Proof of false testimony at the hearing exists;

            d. An unreasonable or arbitrary sanction was given; or

            e. Other substantial irregularities occurred which played a role in the outcome of the hearing.

4.    Of primary importance to the Appeals Board is the written statement.  The written statement should be as complete as possible in setting forth the basis for appeal as listed above. Clear and convincing reasons are necessary for a successful appeal.

5.    The Appeals Committee shall make its recommendation to the College President within 10  calendar days after an appeal has been referred to it.

All questions in regards to this policy, questions about disabilities, and how to request reasonable accommodations should be directed to:

Section 504 Coordinator
1 Campus Drive
Learning Resources Center
Monaca, PA 15061          
Phone:  724-480-3423                

J.        Services Available

A variety of services and auxiliary aids are provided for eligible students. Those services include, but are not limited to, the following: 

                Escorting

In some instances, students with specific physical needs may need assistance with opening doors and/or carrying books to classrooms.  If this occurs, an escort will be provided. Personal care devices and/or attendants, however, are not provided.  

Note-taking Assistance

Students with various disabilities may be eligible for note- taking assistance.  An in-class note-taker, who is typically a classmate who shares his/her notes with a student who has a disability, may be arranged.  The note-taker will be provided with special paper so that copies of notes will be available immediately after class. 

Testing Accommodations

Extended time, a quiet environment, test enlargement, scribe, use of text reader software, or other modifications to classroom testing may be provided for eligible students. 

Sign-Language Interpreters

Students who require interpreting services must contact the Disability Support Services Office at least six weeks prior to the start of the semester to allow for appropriate arrangements to be made.

C-Print Captioning

Deaf/hard-of-hearing students who prefer the printed text of lectures over sign-language interpreting must request the C-Print Captioning service at least six weeks prior to the start of the semester. 

Audio Textbooks – Learning Ally

The college is a member of Learning Ally and can order audio textbooks when available for qualifying students. Students who wish to utilize this service should contact the Disability Support Services Office as soon as possible.  Text-to-speech software is available for use in the event that textbooks are not available from Learning Ally. 

Parking Permits

Handicapped parking spaces are available in all lots on campus. A valid state-issued handicapped license plate or placard is required in order to use the spaces.  PADOT application forms are available in the Disability Support Services Office. For students with temporary disabilities, temporary parking permits may be issued by the office for one semester only. 

Equipment

Use of Learning Ally Audio Books (Formerly RFBD)

Voice Activated/Text Reader Software

Language Translation Software

Reading Machine

Talking/Large Digit Calculators

Amigo Magnifier/Desk Projector Magnification/Hand Held Magnifiers

Echo Pen/Tape Recorders/Digital Recorders

Tactile Image Enhancer

TTY Phone

AlphaSmart Portable Keyboards

Mylar Color Overlays

Adjustable Desks

Adaptive Computer Workstations

Book Carts

Electronic Spellcheckers/Dictionaries

Intel Reader

Adaptive Software (see staff for latest listing) 

K.      Services Not Provided 

Personal care attendants (i.e. assistance with toileting needs, meals, pushing wheelchairs, or assistance with homework), and personal devices (i.e. crutches, wheelchairs), do not come under the heading of accommodations.  These are considered personal needs and are the exclusive responsibility of the student. 

L.      Accommodations for Students with Disabilities in a Dual Enrollment Course

When taking a college level course, high school students with documented disabilities are eligible to receive accommodations. Accommodations at the college level may differ from those at the high school level. The college will not provide modifications to change the course content or performance expectations that would substantially alter the essential elements of the courses.