Academic and Other Accommodations Policy/Procedure
Anna Maria Student Handbook
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Anna Maria College, in compliance with Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the Americans with Disabilities Act, accepts students with documented disabilities who can successfully pursue the College’s academic program. Anna Maria recognizes its responsibility to provide individuals with documented disabilities equal access while maintaining the standards that are essential to the academic program.
This policy applies to all Anna Maria College students.
The Director of the Student Success Center, Dennis Vanasse, is Anna Maria College’s academic accommodation coordinator. Dennis Vanasse may be found in Trinity East, first floor, (508) 849-3372, .
The Director of Health and Counseling Services, Linda Aronson, will review meal and housing plan accommodation documentation, in consultation with Jessica Eckstrom, the Director of Residence Life. Linda Aronson may be found in the Health Services Center, (508) 849-3458, . Jessica Eckstrom may be found in the Bishop Flanagan Campus Center, (508) 849-3271, .
Admission to Anna Maria College is based on the requirements in the catalog. Anna Maria does not discriminate on the basis of disability in the admission process. If an applicant believes his or her disability has had a negative impact on high school grades and test scores, and that the scores do not reflect the ability to do college work, the student may choose to disclose and explain that to the admissions officer.
Students with documented disabilities may request accommodations in the structure of a course or courses either prior to or after their admission to the College. The responsibility for initiating such requests always rests with the student. Students with disabilities who wish to begin the semester with course-based accommodations must submit appropriate documentation of the disability to the Director of the Student Success Center one week prior to the beginning of the semester. The Director will review the documentation, confer with the appropriate Academic Dean or Director when necessary, and will then inform the student which accommodations and support services are appropriate and reasonable.
Reasonable accommodations are those that do not fundamentally alter the essential nature of the course, curriculum or program and do not result in an undue administrative or financial burden for the institution.
Steps for Receiving Academic Accommodations:
1) Present appropriate disability documentation to Director of the Student Success Center. Example: a recent psychological evaluation.
2) The Director of the Student Success Center will have one week to review the documentation to determine if the student has a disability that would allow for reasonable accommodations.
3) The student must schedule a follow-up meeting with the Director of the Student Success Center one week after submitting the documentation.
4) The student will review and discuss reasonable accommodations with Director of the Student Success Center.
5) During the meeting, the Director of the Student Success Center will sign and present the student with the accommodation form(s).
6) The student will sign the accommodation form(s) in the presence of the Director.
7) The student will present accommodation form(s) for faculty signature(s). The Director does not notify the faculty of accommodation requests, decisions or the nature of the student’s disability.
8) Once the Director of the Student Success Center, student, and faculty member have signed the accommodation form, the student must bring the signed accommodation form(s) back to the Director of the Student Success Center. A copy will be kept in a confidential file for verification purposes.
9) The student will work directly with the faculty member to arrange for accommodations (for instance, if a student receives extended time in a distraction-free environment for testing, the student and faculty member will determine when the test will be available in the Success Center.)
The above process must be followed each semester for the student to receive accommodations in a course. It is the responsibility of the student to request accommodations.
The Student Success Center will also arrange need-based academic support services outside the classroom. All specific course-based accommodations should be established at the beginning of each academic term. It is the responsibility of the student to contact the professor to arrange for the necessary accommodations. Accommodations set at the beginning of the term may be adjusted on an as-needed basis.
The common types of academic accommodations available to students in specific courses and outside the classroom may include, but are not limited to, the following:
Modifications in Academic Requirements
Students with documented disabilities may request modifications in academic requirements as are necessary to ensure that such requirements do not discriminate against students with disabilities, or have the effect of excluding students solely on the basis of disability. Modifications may include changes in the length of time permitted for completion of degree requirements, reduced course loads, substitution of specific courses for degree requirements, waivers of specific requirements, and/or utilization of the pass (P) grade, with a passing grade consisting of a D or higher, in courses where a disability has a discriminating effect.
Students requesting modifications in academic requirements must submit a written request to the Vice President for Academic Affairs complete with the appropriate documentation of the disability. The College’s guidelines for reviewing all requests for modifications are as follows:
Academic Accommodation and Requirement Appeals Process
Any student dissatisfied with the decisions made relating to accommodations has a right to appeal. The appeals process for academic accommodation and requirements on campus is as follows: A written statement of the dispute will be sent by the student through Anna Maria College email to the Vice President for Academic Affairs within seven (7) business days of notification of the decision. This statement should include all relevant information and should request clear remedial action. Based on this statement, the Vice President for Academic Affairs will, within five (5) business days, reach a decision either to reactivate the individual planning process or determine that the plan as developed is appropriate. If the appeal is rejected, the student may exercise his/her right to appeal to the President of the College. This appeal must be submitted by the student in writing through AMC email within seven (7) business days of notification of the decision on the appeal. The President’s decision shall be final.
Students with documented disabilities who wish to live in campus housing are encouraged to contact the Director of Health and Counseling Services, Linda Aronson, early in the housing or admission process to discuss their housing and/or meal plan needs.
Requests for housing and meal plan accommodations must be provided each academic year. In most cases, previously submitted documentation of the disability will be sufficient.
Steps for Receiving Housing and Meal Plan Accommodations:
Housing accommodations made for a student with a documented disability shall not be at a cost more than housing for students without documented disability.
Deadlines for housing accommodation applications are as follows:
Incoming students: Fall Housing, May 1st, spring housing, January 1st.
Returning students: academic year housing, April 1st
Late applications will be considered on a case by case basis and accommodations will be considered is space is available.
Meal plan accommodation requests may be made at any time. The College’s policy on refund will be followed if the granted accommodation results in the student’s total removal from the meal plan. Students with relevant documented disability requesting to be exempt from the meal plan entirely must apply for this accommodation by August 1st for the fall semester and December 1st for the spring semester to ensure maximum meal plan credit.
Housing and/or Meal Plan Accommodation Appeal Process
Any student dissatisfied with the decisions made relating to accommodations has a right to appeal. The appeals process for campus housing and/or meal plan accommodations are as follows: A written statement of the dispute will be sent through Anna Maria College email by the student to the Vice President for Student Affairs, Andrew Klein, , within seven (7) business days of notification of the decision. This statement should include all relevant information and should request clear remedial action. Based on this statement, the Vice President for Student Affairs will, within five (5) business days, make a decision on the appeal. If the appeal is rejected, the student may exercise his/her right to appeal to the President of the College. This appeal must be submitted by the student in writing through Anna Maria College email with in seven (7) business days of notification of the decision on the appeal. The President’s decision shall be final.
In compliance with relevant law, including Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (“Section 504”), and the Fair Housing Act (“FHA”), individuals with disabilities who require the use of service or assistance animals as a reasonable accommodation for their disability may be permitted to bring such animals on campus as long as they comply with Anna Maria College’s (the “College”) policies, procedures and rules regarding such animals as stated in this Policy Concerning Service Animals and Assistance Animals in Campus Residence Halls Policy (the “Policy”).
I. Service Animals (Dogs)
A service animal is defined as any dog that is individually trained to do work or perform tasks for the benefit of an individual with a disability. The task must be directly related to the person’s disability.
Students who wish to request a service dog must meet with the Director of Health and Counseling Services to show that the dog is required because of a disability and to confirm what work or tasks the dog has been trained to perform. There is no requirement to provide training certification and there is no requirement to provide a demonstration of services.
While a student need not identify the specific nature of his/her disability, if the need for a service animal is not readily apparent, the College may request additional documentation in support of the request for the purpose of determining whether an animal qualifies as a service animal, namely: (i) that the service animal is required due to the functional limitations of the requesting individual’s disability; and (ii) what work or tasks the service animal has been trained to perform for the benefit of the student.
Upon approval of the request for a resident (on-campus) student, the Director of Health and Counseling will notify the Director of Residence Life. The Director of Residence Life will make a housing assignment in a suitable residence in a hall designated as “animal compatible.” There will be “animal compatible” housing in each style of housing available on campus (freshman housing, suite style housing, upper-class corridor housing), although not necessarily in each residence hall or every floor. There will also be “animal-free” housing wings/floors in each style of housing available on campus.
II. Assistance Animals under the Fair Housing Act & Section 504
The Fair Housing Act (FHA) regulations define assistance animals as an animal that: (i) works, provides assistance, or performs tasks for the benefit of a person with a disability, or (ii) provides emotional support that alleviates one or more identified symptoms or effects of a person’s disability.
A student requesting to have an assistance animal in College housing must meet with the Director of Health and Counseling and provide a written request that includes (i) medical documentation of a qualifying disability (physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more life activities) (ii) documentation that the animal requested provides emotional support that alleviates one or more of the identified symptoms or effects of the existing disability and (iii) a statement on how the need for the assistance animal relates to the ability of the student to use and gain benefit from College housing. Please note that all of these requirements must be met for a request to be granted by the College.
A request may be denied if:
Upon approval of the request, the Director of Health and Counseling will notify the Director of Residence Life. The Director of Residence Life will make a housing assignment in a suitable residence in a hall designated as “animal compatible.” There will be “animal compatible” housing in each style of housing available on campus (freshman housing, suite style housing, upper-class corridor housing), although not necessarily in each residence hall or every floor. There will also be “animal-free” housing wings/floors in each style of housing available on campus.
III. Rules Governing Service and Assistance Animals on Campus
Where appropriate in the sole discretion of the College, Disability Services staff may provide notice or offer targeted training to members of the College community most likely to come in contact with an assistance animal.
Further Appeal: Office of Civil Rights
If you are dissatisfied with the outcome of the College’s appeal procedures or wish to pursue an alternative to using those procedures, you may file a complaint against the College with Office of Civil Rights or in a court. You may learn more about the OCR complaint process from the brochure “How to File a Discrimination Complaint with the Office for Civil Rights”, which you may obtain by contacting them at the addresses and phone numbers below, or at http://www.ed.gov/ocr/docs/howto.html. Boston Office, Office for Civil Rights, US Department of Education, 8th Floor, 5 Post Office Square, Boston, MA 02109-3921, Telephone: (617) 289-0111, FAX: (617) 289-0150; TDD: (800) 877-8339, Email: or the national office at U.S. Department of Education, Office for Civil Rights,
Lyndon Baines Johnson Department of Education Bldg, 400 Maryland Avenue, SW, Washington, DC 20202-1100, Telephone: (800) 421-3481, FAX: (202) 453-6012; TDD: (800) 877-8339, Email: .
Latex allergy is an immune system reaction to natural rubber latex that is found in most latex gloves and many other medical products. Symptoms of latex allergy can range from mild to severe.
The responsibility of understanding the risks associated with exposure to latex even when reasonable precautions are made lies with the student who has the latex sensitivity.
All students with symptoms of a latex allergy should be evaluated by an allergist for confirmatory testing, treatment and education. If a diagnosis of latex allergy is made, students must take the following steps and understand the following formation:
Although Anna Maria College has made an effort to eliminate as much latex as possible, it is not a latex-free environment; therefore, the risk of exposure to latex cannot be eliminated. Anna Maria College cannot guarantee a latex free environment during clinical rotations. Students must release and hold harmless Anna Maria College and all clinical agencies from the liability of exposure to latex.