Students New to Disability Services
New Student Forms
- Step 1: Ready to get started? Please fill out a New Student Information Form.
- Step 2: Know what to expect. Please review the New Student Packet (PDF).
- Step 3: Take our introductory survey upon arrival for the appointment.
Transition from K-12 to College
There are four main differences between high school and college disability services.
More independence from the student is expected.
The student is regarded as the primary agent in their education process. All communication flows through the student when it concerns their decisions. The student may choose to include an advocate as they navigate their education planning process, but the advocate will not be used to substitute the student's involvement. Any communication about the student should include the student. This helps prepare the individual with a disability to advocate for themselves. Additionally, the student gets to learn what will be expected of them later in life, as they develop their independence.
Services are not automatic.
When the student joins college, records of accommodations are not automatically transferred from previous schools, whether that be a previous K-12 school or a previous college. The student must initiate the process to set up disability accommodations by contacting the Services for Students with Disabilities office. In addition, disability accommodations are not automatically configured each quarter. The student must authorize that each class receive notice of their accommodations, as new classes are selected each quarter. Disability accommodations are the student's choice to use or not, each quarter, depending on which classes they deem warrant this service.
We respect the privacy of sensitive student information. Therefore, additional parties are not automatically granted access to the student's disability information. Students are given the option to authorize additional parties if necessary, but this remains the student's choice alone. In this way, we also allow the student with a disability to exercise leadership over their decision-making process. Parents are encouraged to communicate with the student and college inclusively, rather than excluding the student from partaking in the college planning process.
- Tools for Access.
College accommodations do not generally alter the requirements of a course or assignment. Learning outcomes remain the same for all students, with and without disabilities. Behavior expectations apply universally, as well. There is no category of college-level classes equivalent to "Special Ed". Instead, we can provide tools to assist with gaining access to the information, and demonstrating one's knowledge, in college courses. Our accommodations often assist with capturing information conveyed through lectures, providing technology to assist with reading/writing, and carefully planning to address the time needed for completing tests and assignments on-schedule.
More Resources for Parents
Here is a helpful guide of what you can expect for students with disabilities during high school and college, from accreditedschoolsonline.org (external link).