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Office of Accessible Education Services

 

            The Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (the ADA) and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (the Rehabilitation Act) prohibit the University from excluding a person from participation in University programs or activities, denying a person the benefits of such programs or activities, and from discriminating against such person based on the person’s disability. 

FOR STUDENTS:

LMU is committed to providing accessible educational support services that enable students with disabilities to participate in, and benefit from, all University programs and activities.  Every effort is made to reasonably accommodate the needs of a student with a disability. As buildings on the LMU campuses are remodeled, care is taken to assure that persons with disabilities have sufficient access to those buildings.  
            It is important for students to understand that it is their responsibility to request services at a post-secondary institution, and timely requests for services are imperative for the best possible outcomes in seeking and receiving reasonable accommodations. Our mission is to work with you as a team to remove barriers that may hinder your ability to fully participate in the academic experience at Lincoln Memorial University. 

            Accessible educational support services are administered by the Office of Accessible Education Services.  Any issued related to accessibility, the Americans with Disabilities Act (“ADA”), or Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (“Section 504”) should be directed to:


Dr. Daniel Graves
Lincoln Memorial University
6965 Cumberland Gap Parkway
Harrogate, TN  37752

Office Location: Duke Hall, Suite 202
Phone:  423.869.6531
daniel.graves@LMUnet.edu

To Request an Accommodation:

            The following procedure must be followed in order for any student with a disability to receive accommodations through Lincoln Memorial University: 

 

  1. For each semester an accommodation is requested, the student must submit a Student Request for Accommodations form and the required documentation to the Office of Accessible Education Services;
  2. The ADA Director will contact the student concerning arrangements for reasonable accommodations, and the student should be prepared to discuss specific accommodation needs;
  3. If accommodations are approved, a Student Accessibility Form will be prepared by the ADA Director listing the accommodations. The student will take the form to the student’s faculty for review and signature, then the student will return the completed form to the Office of Accessible Education Services for signature. The student will be provided a signed copy via LMU email and should provide his/her faculty members with a signed copy.
  4. If accommodations are denied, the student may appeal the decision by following the grievance procedure listed below.

            Accommodations remain in effect only for the academic semester in which the accommodations are granted.  Students must request accommodations for each semester by following the procedure discussed above.   

 

Documentation Guidelines

            Students requesting accommodations or services from LMU because of a disability are required to submit documentation to determine eligibility for those accommodations or services in accordance with Section 504 and the ADA. To establish that a student is covered under Section 504 and the ADA, the documentation must indicate that the disability substantially limits a major life activity, including learning. 

            A diagnosis of a disability does not necessarily qualify a student for academic accommodations under the law. The following guidelines are provided in the interest of assuring that documentation of a disability is complete and supports the student’s request for accommodations. LMU will determine eligibility and appropriate services on a case by case basis based on the quality and completeness of the documentation submitted. The following requirements provide students, schools, and professional diagnosticians with a common understanding of the components of documentation that are necessary to validate the existence of a disability, the impact on the individual’s educational performance, and the need for academic accommodations for the purpose of the ADA and Section 504. Students are encouraged to provide these documentation guidelines to the medical professional rendering a disability opinion to assure that all requirements are met. 

 

A Qualified Professional Must Conduct the Evaluation - The assessment must be administered by a trained and qualified (i.e., certified and/or licensed) professional (e.g., psychologist, school psychologist, neurophysiologist, education diagnostician) who has had direct experience with adolescents and adults with disabilities.  Students with documented medical conditions must be seen by their medical doctor and include the physician’s full name, license number, and facility at which they practice medicine.

 

Documentation Must be Current - Reasonable accommodations are based on the current impact of the disability on academic performance. In most cases this means that a diagnostic evaluation should be age appropriate and relevant to the student’s learning environment, and show the student’s current level of functioning. If documentation does not address the student’s current level of functioning, a re-evaluation may be required. 

 

Documentation Must Include a Specific Diagnosis - The report must include a clear and direct statement that a disability does or does not exist. Terms such as “learning difficulty,” “appears,” “suggests,” or “probable” do not support a conclusive diagnosis.

 

Documentation Must be Comprehensive - The documentation must include a summary containing relevant historical information, instructional interventions, related services, and age of initial diagnosis. The documentation must also include objective data regarding aptitude, achievement, and information processing. Test scores (standard scores, percentiles, and grade equivalents) must also be included in the documentation.

 

Recommendations for Accommodations - A diagnostic report may include specific recommendations for accommodation(s). A prior history of an accommodation, without a demonstration of a current need, does not in and of itself warrant the provision of that accommodation. Each accommodation recommended by an evaluator should include a rationale. The evaluation should support the recommendations with specific test results or clinical observations. If an accommodation is not clearly identified in the diagnostic report, LMU has the right to seek clarification and/or additional information either from the student’s evaluator or from another trained professional chosen by LMU. LMU will make the final determination as to whether appropriate and reasonable accommodations are warranted and can be provided. LMU reserves the right to request reassessment of the student’s disability when questions arise regarding previous assessment, provision of services or accommodations, or when the student requests additional services or accommodations above and beyond what has been previously provided to the student.

 

Temporary Accommodations

            In the event that a student has a temporary disabling condition, the student may request temporary accommodations.  The process and documentation guidelines set forth above also apply to a request for temporary accommodations.  Temporary accommodations remain in effect until the student’s medical professional has indicated the accommodation is no longer necessary or the end of the academic semester, whichever comes first.  If the temporary disabling condition persists into the following semester, the student must again request accommodations following the procedure discussed above. 

            If a student requires a temporary parking pass because of a temporary disabling condition, the student can request a temporary parking pass through Lincoln Memorial University’s Campus Police and Security.  This application can be accessed by accessing the Administration web portal under Security Parking Applications.  All students requesting a temporary parking pass must complete the application for a temporary pass through the State of Tennessee.

 

Emotional Support Animals

            Residential Students who are in need of an Emotional Support Animal must submit documentation to and be approved for an emotional support animal by the Office of Accessible Education Services.  Students should review the Emotional Support Animal Policy and Procedure for additional information on requesting an emotional support animal. 

 

ADA/Section 504 Grievance Procedure

            The following procedure must be followed for all grievances concerning disability-related matters including, but not limited to, a request for accommodation, the provision of accommodations, or access to facilities. Students may make a complaint about:

  • A determination regarding a requested service or accommodation;
  • Administration of a requested service or accommodation;
  • Inaccessibility of a university program, activity, service, or facility;
  • Harassment on the basis of disability in violation of university policy; or
  • Any other alleged university violation of the ADA or the Rehabilitation Act.

            The university encourages individuals to utilize this procedure before pursuing remedies outside the university.  Students have the right to file a complaint directly with the Office of Civil Rights of the United States Department of Education. 

 

  1. Informal Grievance: Individuals who believe they have been denied access or denied a requested accommodation, or who otherwise disagree with an approved accommodation are encouraged, but not required, to first discuss their concern with the Director of Accessible Education Services before filing a formal grievance. A conversation with the Director may resolve the concern quickly.

 

  1. Formal Grievance: All student grievances concerning the ADA or Section 504 should be filed with the Assistant Vice President for Academic Support (AVPAS) within fifteen (15) business days of the decision or occurrence which is the subject of the grievance. Grievances filed outside the fifteen day timeframe will be considered only upon a showing of extenuating circumstances relating to the individual’s inability to file the grievance within the required timeframe. The grievance may be filed using the ADA/504 Student Grievance Form or by contacting the AVPAS either through written or verbal communication. The AVPAS shall conduct a formal investigation of the student’s Formal Grievance. This thorough and objective review will involve meeting with the aggrieved student, and may also involve meeting with the Office of Accessible Education Services and Assistant Vice President for Academic Services staff, faculty members, and/or other concerned staff members within the university. The AVPAS shall allow all involved parties an opportunity to make statements, present witnesses, and submit evidence regarding the subject of the grievance. Within thirty (30) business days of receipt of the grievance, the AVPAS shall render a written decision utilizing a preponderance of the evidence standard. The decision will be emailed to each party at the party’s university email address or to the last known mailing address if a party no longer has a university email address.

 

  1. Appealing a Formal Grievance decision: Individuals may request to appeal a Formal Grievance decision by filing a Formal Grievance Appeal Request with the ADA Appeals Committee within fifteen (15) business days of the date of the Formal Grievance decision. The Chair of the Committee shall review the request and make a determination to grant or deny the request. Requests will only be granted for the following reasons:
    1. New evidence is now available which was not available at the time of the original decision and that evidence, if available at the time of the original decision, would likely have changed the original decision; and/or
    2. A procedural error was made in the formal grievance process.

The Chair shall notify the aggrieved party in writing if the Request to Appeal is denied.  If a Request to Appeal is granted, the ADA Appeals Committee shall meet to review the Formal Grievance Appeal Request and all of the evidence submitted at the formal grievance stage.  The Committee shall issue a written decision within fifteen (15) business days of the filing of the Appeal.  The decision will be emailed to each party at the party’s university email address or to the last known mailing address if the aggrieved party is a third-party or where a party no longer has a university email address.  The decision of the Appeals Committee is final.

 

FOR EMPLOYEES AND THIRD PARTIES:

To Request an Accommodation (For employees only):

The Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA) prohibits discrimination and ensures equal opportunity for persons with disabilities in employment. In accordance with the ADA and LMU’s nondiscrimination policy, LMU provides reasonable accommodation to employees who are disabled, or who become disabled, and require assistance to perform the essential functions of their position. If you have a disability and require accommodation, please contact the Office of Human Resources.  The Office of Human Resources, in consultation with the Director of Accessible Education Services, will review the request and determine if the requested accommodation is reasonable. All protected health information will be maintained confidentially.   

ADA/Section 504 Grievance Procedure (For employees and third-parties)

            The following procedure must be followed for all grievances concerning disability-related matters including, but not limited to, a request for accommodation, the provision of accommodations, or access to facilities. Employees and third parties may make a complaint about:

  • A determination regarding a requested service or accommodation;
  • Administration of a requested service or accommodation;
  • Inaccessibility of a university program, activity, service, or facility;
  • Harassment on the basis of disability in violation of university policy; or
  • Any other alleged university violation of the ADA or the Rehabilitation Act.

            The university encourages individuals to utilize this procedure before pursuing remedies outside the university.  Employees have the right to file a complaint directly with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.

 

  1. Informal Grievance: Individuals who believe they have been denied access or denied a requested accommodation, or who otherwise disagree with an approved    accommodation are encouraged, but not required, to first discuss their concern with          the Director of Accessible Education Services before filing a formal grievance. A       conversation with the Director may resolve the concern quickly.

 

  1. Formal Grievance: All employee and third-party grievances concerning the ADA or Section 504 should be filed with the Institutional Compliance Office (ICO) within   fifteen (15) business days of the decision or occurrence which is the subject of the           grievance. Grievances filed outside the fifteen day timeframe will be considered only           upon a showing of extenuating circumstances relating to the individual’s inability to     file the grievance within the required timeframe. The grievance may be filed using the    ADA/504 Employee Grievance Form or by contacting the Institutional Compliance       Officer either through written or verbal communication. The ICO shall conduct a formal investigation of the employee’s Formal Grievance. This thorough and objective        review will involve meeting with the aggrieved party, and may also involve meeting         with the Office of Accessible Education Services, the Office of Human Resources, the         employee’s supervisor, other concerned staff members within the university, and/or other members with knowledge of the subject of the grievance. The ICO shall allow       all involved parties an opportunity to make statements, present witnesses, and submit        evidence regarding the subject of the grievance. Within thirty (30) business days of        receipt of the grievance, the ICO shall render a written decision utilizing a     preponderance of the evidence standard. The decision will be emailed to each party   at the party’s university email address, or to the last known mailing address if the       aggrieved party is a third-party or where a party no longer has a university email   address.

 

  1. Appealing a Formal Grievance decision: Individuals may request to appeal a Formal Grievance decision by filing a Formal Grievance Appeal Request with the ADA   Appeals Committee within fifteen (15) business days of the date of the Formal        Grievance decision. The Chair of the Committee shall review the request and make a      determination to grant or deny the request.  Requests will only be granted for the        following reasons:
  2. New evidence is now available which was not available at the time of the original decision and that evidence, if available at the time of the original decision, would likely have changed the original decision; and/or
  3. A procedural error was made in the formal grievance process.

The Chair shall notify the aggrieved party in writing if the Request to Appeal is denied.  If a Request to Appeal is granted, the ADA Appeals Committee shall meet to review the Formal Grievance Appeal Request and all of the evidence submitted at the formal grievance stage.  The Committee shall issue a written decision within fifteen (15) business days of the filing of the Appeal.  The decision will be emailed to each party at the party’s university email address or to the last known mailing address if the aggrieved party is a third-party or where a party no longer has a university email address.  The decision of the Appeals Committee is final.

 

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423.869.3611 | 800.325.0900
6965 Cumberland Gap Parkway
Harrogate, TN 37752