Nondiscriminatory and Access to Equal Educational Opportunity

 

Pursuant to Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and its implementing regulations ("Section 504"), no otherwise qualified individual with a disability shall, solely by reason of his/her disability, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance. The University does not discriminate in admission or access to, participation in, or employment in, its programs or activities.

 

Designation of Section 504 Compliance Officer:

The President has designated the Director of Accreditation and Assessment as the University's Section 504 Compliance Officer (hereinafter "Compliance Officer"), whose responsibility it shall be to coordinate the University's efforts to comply with applicable Federal and State laws and regulations, including the University's duty to address any inquiries or complaints regarding discrimination or denial of equal access. The Compliance Officer has been trained in the requirements of Section 504 and the ADA and is responsible for providing proper notice of nondiscrimination for Title II, Title IX of the Education Amendment Act of 1972, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, and the Americans with Disabilities Act to students, faculty, staff members, and the general public. The Compliance Officer may be reached at:

 

Ohio Christian University

Attn: David Pennington

504 Compliance Officer/Title IX Coordinator 

1476 Lancaster Pike

Circleville, OH 43113

Phone Number: 740-420-5906

Fax Number: 866-510-2708
complianceofficer@ohiochristian.edu

 

Applicable Definitions:

As used in this policy, "an individual with a disability" means a person who has had a record of, or is regarded as having, a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities. Major life activities include, but are not limited to, functions such as caring for one's self, performing manual tasks, walking, seeing, eating, sleeping, standing, lifting, bending, reading, concentrating, thinking, communicating, hearing, speaking, breathing, learning and working. Major life activities also include the operation of a major bodily function, including but not limited to functions of the immune system, normal cell growth, digestive, bowel, bladder, neurological, brain, respiratory, circulatory, endocrine, and reproductive functions. 

With respect to the University's education programs or activities, only students who have an actual disability are entitled to accommodation, although all students who met the definition of a disability (e.g., being regarded as disabled or having a record of a disability), are protected from discrimination.  Also as used within this policy, a qualified person with a disability means a student with a diagnosed disability who meets the academic and technical standards requisite for admission to or participation in the University's education program or activity. 

As used in this policy, "accommodations" include academic adjustments, auxiliary aids and services, or other reasonable accommodations.

 

Application for Accommodation:

It is the responsibility of the student with a disability to identify him/herself to the Director of Accreditation and Assessment, who may be contacted at the following location:

 

1476 Lancaster Pike

Circleville, OH 43113

Phone Number: 740-420-5906

Fax Number:  866-510-2708

complianceofficer@ohiochristian.edu

 

Alternatively, a student may identify him/herself to the Research Assistant to the Director of Accreditation and Assessment, who may be contacted at the following location:

 

1476 Lancaster Pike

Circleville, OH 43113

Phone Number:  740-477-7803

Fax Number:  866-510-2708

complianceofficer@ohiochristian.edu                                  

 

It is the responsibility of the student with a disability to provide person identified above the required documentation in order to request and, if appropriate, receive any accommodation. Given the specific nature of each student's disability, the appropriate accommodation shall be determined on an individual basis.

Students who wish to request an accommodation are required to submit a written request for accommodation to the University's Section 504 Compliance Officer. Students must use the University approved "Request for Accommodation" form that may be obtained from the Compliance Officer or via http://www.ohiochristian.edu/about/nondiscriminatory-policy.

Students requesting an accommodation are also required to provide documentation that supports the existence of a current disability to the University.  Generally, such documentation will need to include information from a qualified healthcare professional that: (1) provides a current diagnosis of the disability, (2) indicates information about the severity and longevity of the disability, and (3) may offer suggestions and/or recommendations for necessary and appropriate accommodation(s).  For the purposes of this policy, “current” typically means within this last three years, although this timeframe is a guideline which may be modified, depending on the circumstances, on a case by case basis.  A “qualified healthcare professional” includes a licensed school psychologist, licensed psychologist, licensed rehabilitation counselor, speech and language pathologist, physician, or other appropriate medical/healthcare professional.

In order to facilitate the University’s efforts to provide a requested academic accommodation students who request an accommodation may be required to complete the University approved "Verification of Disability" form that may be obtained from the Compliance Officer or via http://www.ohiochristian.edu/about/nondiscriminatory-policy.  This form includes a limited release to be signed by the student which will permit University officials to consult with the student's healthcare professional, for the purpose of clarifying a request for appropriate accommodation(s) in the academic setting.  When requested, completed "Verification of Disability" forms must be returned to the University's Compliance Officer.

Once the completed "Request for Accommodation" form  (and when requested, the "Verification of Disability" form) is returned to the University Compliance Officer, it/they will be reviewed to ensure that: (1) the student is a qualified individual with a disability under Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973; and (2) they provides complete documentation. If necessary, the Compliance Officer will obtain knowledge about the disability or disabilities in question.

Students will generally be contacted by the University's Compliance Officer within seven (7) school days about their eligibility determination status. Alternatively, the student may be requested to provide to the Compliance Officer supplemental information from his/her healthcare professional.

If a student is determined to be a qualified student with a disability, he/she will meet with the University's Compliance Officer to discuss and determine the appropriate and reasonable academic adjustment(s), auxiliary aid(s) or service(s), or other reasonable accommodation(s). When an accommodation is approved, the Compliance Officer shall issue the student an "Accommodation Approval Letter." Thereafter, the student is responsible for informing his/her professor of the approved accommodation(s). The University cannot provide information about a student's disability to anyone without the student's consent and shall not be responsible for informing professors about a student's request and/or need for an accommodation. Students who intend to seek an academic accommodation are encouraged to notify their professors of such intent during their first week of classes in order to provide the faculty member ample notification to make arrangements for a proctor, separate room for testing, or other special accommodation. Unless circumstances make such notice unreasonable or not feasible, students are generally asked to provide a faculty member with at least seven (7) days’ notice prior to the need for the accommodation.  The University will make reasonable efforts to provide the accommodation in as timely a manner as possible. 

The University and its faculty and/or staff are not required to make any academic adjustment or accommodation that alters the integrity or essential components or technical standards of a course or program. If a faculty member believes that one or more of the requested accommodations will fundamentally alter the nature of the course or program, he/she should discuss the concern with the University's Section 504 Compliance Officer, who will determine if the expressed concern is valid. In such cases, the decision of the Compliance Officer is final, except that the student may avail themselves of the grievance procedure referenced below.

 

Resolution of Disagreements:

In accordance with 34 C.F.R. 104.7, the University has adopted grievance procedures to provide for the resolution of student, faculty, and staff complaints/grievances alleging violations of Section 504/ADA. A copy of the grievance procedures (Faculty, Staff, & VisitorStudent) may be obtained from the Compliance Officer or via http://www.ohiochristian.edu/about/nondiscriminatory-policy.  Please refer to these procedures for further information.

The Compliance Officer, or his/her designee, shall be responsible for the investigation of any complaints of discrimination based on disability, or any grievance, which may be filed pursuant to the University's adopted grievance procedures, and will attempt to resolve such complaints and/or grievances.

 

Publication:

Notice of the University's policy on nondiscrimination and access to equal educational opportunities shall be posted on the University's website and published in the University's general information handbooks.

 

Forms:

All forms and grievance policies can be obtained through the University 504 Compliance Officer or through the following links:

 

Forms & Procedures:

Faculty, Staff, & Visitor Grievance Procedures

Student Grievance Procedures

Request for Accommodation

Verification of Disability