ADA and Section 504 & Accommodations Policies and Procedures
The 504 Services Coordinator in partnership with The Center for Student Success (“The Hundred”) assists St. Louis Christian College (SLCC) in fulfilling its commitment to educate and serve students. It is the policy and practice of SLCC to comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and its Amendments (ADAA), Section 504 (§504) of the Rehabilitation Act, and state and local laws regarding students with disabilities. The Center for Student Success provides reasonable testing accommodations to students with disabilities and a variety of academic and support services to all students to help optimize their learning experience, while encouraging them to develop and maintain independence. The goal of the Center for Student Success is to provide counsel concerning academic issues including academic tutoring for students seeking help and academic support for students with documented disabilities.
The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) defines a person with a disability as any person who has a physical or mental impairment which substantially limits one or more major life activities (walking, seeing, hearing, speaking, breathing, learning, and working), has a record of such an impairment, or is regarded as having such an impairment. The 504 Services Coordinator is responsible for arranging a variety of academic and support services based on the individual needs of each student. The goal is to seek to create an accessible academic, social, and physical environment for students with disabilities at SLCC. To accomplish this goal requires balancing a number of factors, such as the degree and nature of the disability, the interests of the student, the resources of the College, and the right of the College to maintain academic standards and essential course or program requirements.
Adherence to Equal Opportunity
St. Louis Christian College subscribes to the principles and laws of the State of Missouri and the Federal Government pertaining to civil rights and equal opportunity, including Title IX of the 1972 Education Amendments.
Applicants for admission or employment, students, parents of students, and employees of St.Louis Christian College are hereby notified that no person shall be denied admission as a student or denied appointment as an employee on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, age or disability.
General Accommodations & Services
Based on documentation and recommendations provided by a qualified professional, accommodations/services provided may include, but are not limited to:
- Preferential seating.
- Providing handouts in large print.
- Helping with getting taped textbooks.
- Assisting in finding qualified note-takers or access to class notes.
- Allowing students to record lectures.
- Modifying assignment length and requirements.
- Modifying grading procedures and weight.
- Allowing extended time on tests, quizzes, and exams.
- Allowing testing in low distraction rooms.
- Allowing students to write on exams rather than answer sheets.
- Providing a test reader.
- Providing a test scribe.
- Providing large print test.
- Allowing use of computer for essays.
- Providing tutoring service at published times.
Eligibility for Accommodations
Eligibility for accommodations at SLCC is dependent upon the nature of the particular disability and its impact on the student’s learning. The particular accommodations are determined on a case-by-case basis by the 504 Services Coordinator in consultation with the Disability Services Committee based on current documentation provided by a qualified professional (developmental pediatrician, neurologist, psychiatrist, licensed clinical or educational psychologist, family physicians, etc.). The documentation legitimizes a student’s request for accommodation and, in general, should include:
- Diagnosis and prognosis of the disability.
- Results of standardized testing services.
- Specific limitation to learning in the academic environment.
- Description of the current course of treatment.
- Specific recommendations for reasonable accommodations.
The required documentation must be no more than three years old. SLCC may request current documentation of a disability. If a person obviously uses a wheelchair or is blind or deaf, no further documentation may be necessary. For those with hidden disabilities, however, such as learning disabilities, psychiatric disabilities, or a chronic health impairment, it is reasonable and appropriate for SLCC to request documentation to establish the validity of the request for accommodations, and to help identify what accommodations are required. The classifications or diagnosis of the condition is not as important as the functional limitation caused by the individual’s condition.
Generally, an Individualized Education Plan (IEP), §504 Plan, or General Educational Initiative from a secondary school does not provide thorough information for the documentation of a disability and needed accommodations, but can be used as part of a more comprehensive accommodation plan. The 504 Services Coordinator will bear primary responsibility for reviewing and maintaining the documentation of each student’s disability and for recommending the appropriate accommodation(s) in consideration of the student’s needs based upon the documentation provided and collaboration with the student. The cost of obtaining appropriate documentation is the responsibility of the student.
If the student’s disability is expected to be short-term (less than three (3) weeks duration), the student should attempt to directly work out appropriate classroom accommodations with individual professors. The 504 Services Coordinator is able to recommend accommodations specific to the temporary disability of the student if requested. If the duration of the impairment is expected to have long-term (more than three (3) weeks duration) or permanent effects, the student should schedule an appointment with the 504 Services Coordinator to determine what classroom accommodations are appropriate and how to obtain them.
Procedure for Receiving Accommodations
The student has the following responsibilities, including but not limited to:
- Declare a disability by completing and returning a Voluntary Disclosure of Disability Form. Form is to be returned to the 504 Services Coordinator.
- Provide appropriate documentation of the disability in order to establish the validity of the request for academic accommodations, to provide information about the accommodations required, and to assist in developing an educational plan for the student.
- Meet with the 504 Services Coordinator to discuss accommodations.
- Meet with professors to discuss 504 Classroom Accommodation Form.
- Be a self-advocate in an attempt to informally resolve issues concerning accommodations with professors.
- Contact the 504 Services Coordinator at the beginning of each semester to discuss any necessary changes in accommodations.
- Contact the 504 Services Coordinator immediately if any difficulty or other concern regarding an accommodation is encountered.
The 504 Services Coordinator has the following responsibilities, including but not limited to:
- Meet with students once they have declared a disability.
- Review the student’s documentation and meet with the student as necessary to determine eligibility for receiving accommodations.
- Approve accommodations as appropriate for each student.
- Meet with the student to discuss the approved accommodations and the procedures necessary to obtain them.
- Prepare letters and §504 forms to the professors as necessary to facilitate receipt of appropriate accommodations for which the student is approved.
- Assist the student with the accommodations process.
- Assist the student in resolving problems that may occur during the testing accommodations process.
- Interact with SLCC’s faculty and staff on the student’s behalf as appropriate.
- Maintain records of interactions with the student related to the administration of accommodations.
To accommodate certain kinds of disabilities, students may need to take tests in a room free of distractions, or they may need extended time. When this arrangement is needed, the student may take the exam in The Center for Student Success or an alternative setting arranged via The Center for Student Success.
The student has the following responsibilities:
- Meet with each professor to discuss testing and the accommodations required.
- Remind the professor a few days before the test to send the test to the Center for Student Success.
- Show up on time at the Center for Student Success prepared to take the test.
- Bring and use only the materials approved by the professor. (Do not bring any unauthorized materials including notes, laptop, or cell phone.)
- Advise the test proctor of any personal or medical needs that may arise during testing prior to the beginning of the test.
- Should any difficulty or other concern be encountered during the test, the student is to inform the proctor immediately.
The Center for Student Success has the following responsibilities:
- Prepare 504 Test Proctor Forms and make available to professors.
- Arrange with the student in advance a time to schedule his or her test. (This assures on behalf of the student that a test proctor and an appropriate room are available for the student, prior arrangements for the exam are imperative.)
- Organize and facilitate proctoring and returning of exams to professor(s).
- Provide a proctor for the exam.
- Maintain records of the test accommodation process.
Guidelines & Policies for Testing Accommodations
- The student should arrive on time for the test. Students who arrive more than twenty minutes late for a scheduled test are considered a “no-show.” That student will be advised to speak with the professor about rescheduling the exam; and the decision of whether or not an exam can be rescheduled is left solely to the judgment of the professor. Professors will be notified of “no-shows” and late arrivals.
- Students are not permitted to study for the exam during examination appointments. They are expected to come prepared to take the exam.
- Breaks may be allowed (no longer than ten minutes) during tests. When taking a break, a student must hand the test to the proctor and obtain it again upon return. No extra time is allotted for these breaks. The student may not leave the building, access email, or use a cell phone during the break or the exam.
- The standard extended time accommodation is “time and a half” for quizzes and exams, unless a student’s documentation specifically recommends and supports the need for a time allotment exceeding the time and a half provision.
- In the interest of academic integrity, tests should be delivered to the Center for Student Success by the professor or an appropriate representative from the department or emailed to the Director of Student Success prior to the exam time.
- After the student has completed the exam, one of our staff members will return the exam to the appropriate professor as noted on the test proctor sheet. Students should not be expected to bring exams to the Center for Student Success or to handle them after they are finished.
Student tutors are available in the Center for Student Success during published times. These tutors are selected on the basis of academic excellence and trained to assist students in specific courses and general skills such as research, study helps, time management, writing skills, and MLA formatting. Their services are free of charge to all SLCC students.
St. Louis Christian College is committed to ensuring all information regarding a student is maintained confidentially in compliance with the Family Education Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA). For this reason, only the 504 Services Coordinator and designated staff members from the Center for Student Success have immediate access to student disability files. Documents in disability files will not be released to an outside third party without the written consent of the student.
A student may review the contents of his or her file with the 504 Services Coordinator or an approved Center for Student Success staff member.
Neither a disability nor the use of accommodations is noted on a student’s transcripts or diploma. This confidentiality policy remains in effect after the student is no longer enrolled at the college.
Guidelines for Faculty
The fundamental principles of accommodation and nondiscrimination in academic programs are set forth in § 504 of the Federal Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and in the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) of 1990. “No qualified disabled person shall, on the basis of disability, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or otherwise be subjected to discrimination under any post-secondary education program or activity.”
St. Louis Christian College is responsible for ensuring that programs and activities are accessible to persons with disabilities. In keeping with the intent and purpose of governmental regulations relating to students with disabilities, the College will not:
- Limit the number of students with disabilities admitted.
- Limit access or exclude students with disabilities who are “otherwise qualified” from any course of study solely on the basis of their disabilities.
- Refuse to modify academic requirements that would afford qualified students with disabilities an opportunity for nondiscriminatory educational participation.
Course materials should be available in alternative formats (e.g. large type, audio-taped, etc.). All printed material must contain the statement: “Available in alternative format upon request.”
Professors, in accordance with government regulations and to comply with college policy, may not contest the existence of disabilities that have been properly documented or refuse to provide accommodations authorized through the procedure described in this policy. Should a faculty member have any questions about the accommodation or concerns that they alter an essential element in the course, he or she should immediately contact the 504 Services Coordinator to resolve the issue.
Remember, an accommodation is reasonable if it does not compromise essential requirements for a course or program. Actions to avoid discrimination should not “fundamentally alter” the essential components or pedagogical purposes of a course or program. This does not mean that assignments, projects or tests cannot be modified. The goal is to ensure that students’ legal rights are met and that the college’s academic standards are maintained.
If a professor believes that an accommodation compromises the course, provides the student with an unfair advantage, or imposes an undue burden to implement, he or she should contact the 504 Services Coordinator. The 504 Services Coordinator is not aware of all individual course standards and requirements, but is willing to discuss them in relation to the specific disability of the student. Alternative accommodations may be possible.
If a professor suspects that a student who has not presented documentation may have a disability, he or she should talk with the 504 Services Coordinator. The 504 Services Coordinator can advise the student on how to be screened for the presence of a disability and to assist in making arrangements for a diagnostic assessment at the student’s expense. If the student does not appear to have a disability, the 504 Services Coordinator would assist him or her in identifying the possible reasons for the learning difficulty and in exploring effective strategies for overcoming it.
In the interest of academic integrity, professors are asked to deliver their exams to the Center for Student Success two days prior to the exam time. Easy-to-use Exam Proctoring Checklists are available through the Center for Student Success. These checklists and two-day lead time ensure that the test will be scheduled and monitored according to the professor’s wishes.
When The Center for Student Success is informed of the testing procedures a professor requires, the proctor will ensure that these guidelines are followed. The Center for Student Success and proctor will need to know, for example, whether students are permitted to use a textbook, notes, or a calculator. The Checklists provide an easy means of informing. Unless a professor specifies in writing via the test proctor form or the student’s 504 Accommodations Form has stated accommodations that course materials may be used during the exam, the student will not be allowed books or notes to be present during the exam.
Faculty, staff and students who have questions regarding §504 policies, procedures and accommodations should contact:
504 Services Coordinator
Office of Disability Services
St. Louis Christian College
1360 Grandview Drive
Florissant, Missouri 63033
Faculty, staff and students who have questions regarding The Center for Student Success should contact:
Accredited Schools Online: Helping Students with Hearing Impairments
Accredited Schools Online
PO Box 77041
San Francisco, CA 94107
American Alliance for Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance
1900 Association Drive
Reston, Va. 22091
American Association for the Advancement of Science Project on Sciences Technology and Disability
1333 H St. N.W.
Washington , D.C. 20005
(202) 326-6400 (Voice/TTY)
American Association of Collegiate Registrars and Admissions Officers
1 Dupont Circle N.W., Suite 330
Washington, D.C. 20036
American Council on Education
Higher Education and the Handicapped (HEATH)
HEATH Resource Center
1 Dupont Circle N.W., Suite 800
Washington , D.C. 20036
(202) 939-9300, ext. 320
Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA)
U.S. Department of Justice
950 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW
Civil Rights Division
Disability Rights Section – NYA
Washington, D.C. 20530
Association on Higher Education and Disability (AHEAD)
P.O. Box 21192
Columbus , Ohio 43221
(614) 488-4972 (voice/TDD)
Association of Physical Plant Administrators (APPA)
1446 Duke St.
Alexandria , Va. 22314
College and University Personnel Association (CUPA)
1233 20th St. N.W., Suite 301
Washington , D.C. 20036
National Association of College and University Business Officers (NACUBO)
1 Dupont Circle N.W., Suite 500
Washington, D.C. 20036
Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (§504)
U.S. Department of Education
400 Maryland Avenue, SW
Washington, D.C. 20202