I received special education services and had an IEP/504 Plan in high school. How are these services different in college?
The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) covers grades K-12. Under IDEA, curriculum modifications are used to ensure success. The provision of services is determined by a child study or IEP team and every child is covered.
The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) prohibits discrimination on the basis of disability. Under ADA, academic accommodations at the college level are used to ensure access. Students must self-identify and provide instructors with accommodation letters. Only students who are “otherwise qualified” are covered.
Students are responsible for submitting appropriate substantiating documentation of their disability in order to be eligible for accommodations.
In some circumstances, the differences in the laws pertaining at the college level may result in past accommodations, such as a modified curriculum, not being a part of college level accommodations.
Are there resource rooms or special classes for students with disabilities at Centenary?
No. All students with disabilities are held to the same standards as the general student population. Accommodations are confidential and are designed to “level the playing field”. At Centenary, STEP Ahead and Project ABLE are offered through the Disability Services Office to help bridge the gap between high school and college.
How do I apply for STEP Ahead and Project ABLE?
An applicant may apply for services by completing the Application for Intensive Support and submitting substantiating documentation (Documentation Guidelines). Your file will then be reviewed by the Disability Services Office for consideration. Consideration by DSO includes a full assessment of the standard application materials, as well as an in-depth analysis of learning strengths and weaknesses contained in the substantiating documentation.
How are my professors notified that I have a disability?
The accommodation letter/plan provides an explanation of the accommodations a student is entitled to at Centenary University. Students are responsible for delivery of the letter and are also encouraged to discuss their individual learning styles with their professors.
If I request an accommodation for one class, do I have to use it for all classes or risk losing it?
No. Students are entitled to request accommodations or academic adjustments during the course of the semester or at any time during their tenure at Centenary University. Students may choose to utilize certain accommodations for certain classes.
What role does my parent play in my college education?
The Family Educational Rights Privacy Act (FERPA) gives parents certain rights to their children’s education records. These rights transfer to the student at the age of 18 or when they attend a school beyond the high school level. University personnel cannot share information with anyone about the student unless a “FERPA release” is signed. However, students are encouraged to have an open dialogue with their parents, as they are an important support as students transition to college.