DISABILITIES SERVICES POLICIES - Concordia University

concordia.edu

DISABILITIES SERVICES POLICIES - Concordia University

Concordia University Texas

DISABILITIES SERVICES POLICIES

Draft Proposed: July 2009

Changes Proposed: June 14, 2012

I. Introduction

Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 states that: “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.”

Concordia University Texas supports the integration of all qualified individuals into the programs of the

university and is committed to full compliance with all laws regarding equal opportunity for all students

with a disability. To that end, Concordia University Texas makes every effort to provide reasonable

accommodations for otherwise qualified students with disabilities according to federal guidelines.

II.

Policies

a. Eligibility for Accommodations

Accommodations are determined on a case-by-case basis, taking into account the need

of the student, the course standards and essential requirements, and the educational

environment. Specifically, accommodations are determined by the Student Success

Center director in consultation with the student, using the intake form, student

interview, professional judgment and third party documentation, with input from

faculty and staff, as needed.

b. Documenting a disability –Students who request disability accommodations are asked

to describe their disability, their past use of accommodations and the disability’s likely

impact on the educational experience by filling out an Intake form (add hyperlink).

Types of helpful documentation supportive of such requests include medical records,

psycho-educational testing, and school records. Students without documentation are

welcome to meet with the Director of the Student Success Center to discuss ways to

demonstrate a connection between their condition and any academic barriers they

anticipate.

Documentation can provide a valuable tool for assisting the Disabilities Services office to

understand how courses, systems and facilities may present barriers, and for planning

strategies, including reasonable accommodations, which facilitate access. External

documentation will be used to augment conversations with students and to support

requests for accommodations.


c. Confidentiality

The University recognizes that student disability records contain confidential information

and are to be treated as such. Therefore, documentation of a student’s disability is

maintained in a confidential file in the Student Success Center and is considered part of the

student’s education record. Information related to a disability may be disclosed only with

the permission of the student or as permitted by the university’s student records policy and

federal law. At the same time, however, students' right to privacy must still be balanced

against the university's need to know the information in order to provide requested and

recommended services and accommodations. Therefore, in the interest of serving the

needs of the student, the provision of services may involve staff disclosing disability

information provided by the student to appropriate university personnel participating in the

accommodation process. Information may also be disclosed to appropriate parties in a

health or safety emergency if knowledge of the information is necessary to protect the

health or safety of the student or other individuals. This is limited to a specific situation that

presents imminent danger to a student, other students, or other members of the school

community. Any release must be narrowly tailored considering the immediacy, magnitude,

and specificity of information concerning the emergency. The amount of information that

may be released is determined on a case-by-case basis.

d. Denial of accommodations

The university reserves the right to deny services or accommodations in the event that the

student has not established a reasonable connection between his/her disability and the

need for an accommodation. If the documentation provided by a student does not support

the existence of a disability or the need for an accommodation, the student will be so

advised. Students will be given the opportunity to supplement the initial documentation

with further information from a specialist in their disability.

The university is not required to provide an accommodation that compromises the essential

requirements of a course or program, imposes an undue administrative or financial burden

based on the university’s overall institutional budget or that poses a direct threat to the

health or safety of the student or others.

e. Student Appeal Policy –Concordia University is committed to providing reasonable

accommodations to qualified individuals with disabilities and to protecting students

with disabilities from discrimination or retaliation. The Director of the Student Success

Center works with students and faculty to set up appropriate accommodations and to

resolve any complaints about accommodations that may arise. A student who

disagrees with a determination of eligibility or accommodation is encouraged to meet

first with the Director of the Student Success Center (SSC) to resolve the matter

informally. Students who believe that the university has discriminated against them on


the basis of disability are referred to the Grievance Procedures for Disability Complaints

procedure. These procedures may also be invoked by a student who disputes a

determination by the Director of the SSC or faculty member regarding the existence of a

disability or an accommodation.

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