This handbook provides students with information on Indian Hills Community College’s policies regarding students with disabilities, the process for requesting and receiving accommodations. This handbook also outlines the rights and responsibilities of students receiving accommodations and those of Indian Hills Community College, as well as other valuable information concerning students with disabilities attending IHCC.
Student Disabilities Services (SDS) coordinates services for students with disabilities and acts as a gateway for disability related information and guidance.
IHCC Student Disability Services
Pothoven Academic Success Center, 101C
525 Grandview Ave
Ottumwa, IA 52501
Student Disability Services Coordinator
Student Disability Services Coordinator
Dean, Centerville Campus and Learning Services
Disability and the Law
Two primary pieces of legislation were enacted to protect the rights of individuals with disabilities. Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 as amended states that no otherwise qualified individual with a disability may be discriminated against or denied access to the benefits or services of any program or activity receiving federal financial assistance. The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), which became effective January 26, 1992, and the Americans with Disabilities Act Amendments Act (ADAAA) of 2008, prohibits colleges and universities from discriminating against qualified students with disabilities.
The ADA does not require the college or university to lower academic standards or fundamentally alter the nature of the programs provided. The ADA does state that public colleges and universities must provide communications to persons with disabilities which are equally effective as those provided to individuals without disabilities.
Indian Hills Community College is committed to complying with these laws by providing reasonable accommodations to qualified individuals with disabilities.
Definitions and Details
An individual with a disability is defined as someone who has, had, or is treated as having, an impairment that substantially limits a major life activity.
An otherwise qualified individual with a disability is a person who, with or without reasonable accommodations, can meet the essential program or course requirements.
A reasonable accommodation includes any auxiliary aids and services that do not fundamentally alter the nature of a program or course and do not create an undue burden upon the college.
The ADAAA continues to define a disability as a ―physical or mental impairment that substantially limits a major life activity of an individual; however, the legislation provides a non-exhaustive list of major life activities including, but not limited to, ―caring for oneself, performing manual tasks, seeing, hearing, eating, sleeping, walking, standing, lifting, bending, speaking, breathing, learning, reading, concentrating, thinking, communicating, and working. Major life activities also include the operation of major bodily functions, including, but not limited to, functions of the immune system, normal cell growth, digestive, bowel, bladder, neurological, brain, respiratory, circulatory, endocrine, and reproductive functions.
To view the full Non-Discrimination Statement, please visit the College Catalog & Student Handbook or the college website.
Individuals with disabilities who require accommodations or special services should contact IHCC Disability Services for assistance. Services are available to students who need classroom accommodations, interpreters, and/or specialized equipment. Students enrolling in credit programs should make their requests for accommodations at the time they are applying for admission and preferably, no later than six weeks prior to the beginning of each academic term. All student requests are dealt with in a confidential manner. Students should contact the Ottumwa Disabilities Center by calling 641-683-5749. Centerville students should contact Noel Gorden at 641-683-5118 or email [email protected].
Determination of Disability
To be eligible for accommodations students must provide written documentation from a qualified professional. We are best able to provide an equal educational opportunity when the documentation is thorough, complete and current. It is an individual’s choice whether to self-identify, as well as if and when to use services. Services provided would not lower any course standards or change any requirements of a particular degree.
Students with temporary disabling conditions should also contact IHCC Student Disability Services to initiate services. Appropriate accommodation for the temporary condition would be determined and related to the appropriate instructors.
Disability determinations are made on an individualized basis. Not all impairments rise to the level of being a disability.
All requests for accommodations should be made through IHCC Student Disability Services and as much in advance as possible, preferably no later than six weeks prior to the beginning of each academic term. All student requests are dealt with in a confidential manner. To submit requests or receive additional information contact:
IHCC Student Disability Services
Pothoven Academic Success Center, 101C
525 Grandview Ave
Ottumwa, IA 52501
Form: Request for Services – Application for Accommodations
Disability Services in College
Indian Hills Community College (IHCC) is committed to providing reasonable accommodations to qualified students with disabilities. These accommodations are provided to assist students with disabilities in accessing education at IHCC. Working in partnership with the student, the Disability Services Coordinator will develop an individual plan for services that will include accommodations in testing and instruction.
Advocate for yourself. In college, you are responsible for getting the help you need. You must be able to advocate for yourself. Advocates are persons who know what they want and will stand up for their rights. The following steps will help you to be a good self-advocate and a successful student.
- Know Yourself and Your Disability
- Know Your Rights and Responsibilities
- Know Where to Go for Help
- Take Action
- Manage Your Time Wisely
The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) does not apply to colleges and universities. You will now be requesting and receiving accommodations under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and Section 504 of the 1973 Rehabilitation Act. The differences between the IDEA and the ADA and 504 are significant.
||Secondary Education (High School)
||Post-Secondary Education (College)
|Laws Governing the Entity
- Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA)
- Iowa Administrative Rules of Special Education
- Section 504 of the Vocational Rehabilitation Act
- Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)
|Mission of the Law
||To provide a free, appropriate public education (FAPE) in the least restrictive environment (LRE) for individuals identified as entitled to special education services.
||To provide qualified persons with disabilities, to the maximum extent possible, the opportunity to be integrated fully into mainstream life through accessibility and reasonable accommodations.
|Scope of the Law
||Applies to public school.
||Applies to public or private entity regardless of federal funding.
||Covers individuals ages 3 - 21 or until regular high school diploma requirements are met.
||Covers students with disabilities regardless of age; school may not discriminate in recruitment, admission, or after admission, solely on the basis of a disability.
- To full and equal access to the same educational experience as students without disabilities.
- To accommodation requests reviewed and authorized quickly and fairly by instructors.
- To disability documentation held confidential and released to designated individuals only with the student’s written request or permission.
- To self-identify his or her disability and provide professional documentation of the disability.
- To consult with IHCC Student Disability Services (SDS) to discuss appropriate accommodations.
- To consult with instructors at the beginning of each term to discuss accommodation needs and sign accommodation request forms.
- To adequately meet requirements of chosen program/course of study.
- To arrange exam accommodations in advance of exam dates.
- To notify IHCC Student Disability Services and/or course instructor if accommodations are not being provided or are not effective.
- To abide by the IHCC code of conduct regarding matters such as academic honesty and disruptive behaviors.
- The institution is not required to lower academic standards or fundamentally alter the nature of the programs provided for students with disabilities.
- To not discriminate in any of its programs’ offerings, activities, and services.
- To provide reasonable accommodations to the student’s known disability in order to afford him or her an equal opportunity to participate in the institution’s programs, activities and services. Equal opportunity is not the same thing as equal treatment.
- To provide reasonable accommodations in the form of academic adjustments for eligible students, auxiliary aids, and services such as interpreters, notetakers, and readers to those students whose disabilities require such services
Office of Student Disability Services Rights
- To require professional documentation of a student’s disability.
- To obtain clarification of diagnosis of disability, limitations, and accommodation needs if necessary.
- When there is a question of the appropriateness or feasibility of an accommodation request, to discuss the issue with the faculty and the student to determine recommendations.
Office of Student Disability Services Responsibilities
- To assess, on a case-by-case basis, the effect of a student’s disability on his/her ability to access programs, services, and activities based on appropriate documentation.
- To identify, through documentation and discussion with the student, requests for reasonable accommodations.
- To answer faculty and student questions regarding accommodation needs and requests.
- To facilitate equal access to IHCC’s programs and services for all students with disabilities.
- To maintain all professional disability documentation in confidential files and release to designated individuals only with the student’s written request or permission.
- To require that students with disabilities provide a completed Request for Accommodation form provided by IHCC Student Disability Services.
- To require students with disabilities to meet all program/course requirements and standards.
- To consult with the student and/or IHCC Student Disability Services if s/he feels that requested accommodations are not appropriate for a particular course or situation.
- To provide input on how authorized accommodations will be provided in a particular course.
- To require that students engage in appropriate, non-disruptive behavior in the classroom and to take action to remove a student who is disruptive.
- To require that students follow IHCC Department policies and procedures.
- To provide students with disabilities full and equal access to participate in IHCC’s programs and activities.
- To make sure students with disabilities who are requesting accommodations are aware of services available from IHCC Student Disability Services.
- To cooperate with the qualified student and IHCC Student Disability Services in providing authorized accommodations in a fair and timely manner.
- To provide authorized accommodations as long as the accommodation does not alter the fundamental nature of the course or program.
- To contact the student or IHCC Student Disability Services with questions or problems regarding requested accommodations.
- To be informed of the academic and programmatic standards established by the department and to make these available in written and alternative format.
- To provide department and course materials in alternate format (large print, electronic format, Braille, captioned) when requested.
In accordance with the ADA, faculty do not have the right to question whether a disability exists or examine a student’s disability documentation when the disability has been adequately documented and is on file with INDIAN HILLS COMMUNITY COLLEGE Student Disability Services. The signature of INDIAN HILLS COMMUNITY COLLEGE Student Disability Services personnel on the accommodation request form will act as assurance that the student has provided adequate documentation of the disability and requested accommodations.
If a student discloses to an instructor that s/he has a disability, the student should be referred to:
IHCC Student Disability Services
Pothoven Academic Success Center, 101C
525 Grandview Ave
Ottumwa, IA 52501
Confidentiality and Release of Information
IHCC is committed to ensuring that all information and communication pertaining to a student’s disability is maintained as confidential as required or permitted by law. Student information will be kept in a secured file in the Student Disability Services office (Ottumwa campus). Information regarding a student’s disability will be kept confidential and will only be disclosed as necessary to determine whether or not the student meets the “disability” definition, and to implement reasonable accommodations.
Only information regarding granted accommodations will be shared with the student’s instructor(s) and campus educational counselors. All other information in the student’s file, especially disability documentation, will be held in confidence and will not be released without the student’s informed and written consent as per the Family Education Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA).
When students meet with or correspond with faculty members regarding these issues, the student should begin the dialogue in a confidential manner unless the student wants to voluntarily further disclose a disability.
- No one will have immediate access to student files in IHCC Student Disability Services. Any information regarding a disability is considered confidential and will be shared only with others within the college who have a legitimate educational interest.
- This information is protected by the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA).
- Sensitive information in IHCC Student Disability Services student files will not be released except in accordance with federal and state laws.
- A student’s file may be released pursuant to a court order or subpoena.
- If a student wishes to have information about his/her disability shared with others outside the college, the student must provide written authorization to the Coordinator for IHCC Student Disability Services to release the information. Before giving such authorization, the student should understand the purpose of the release and to whom the information is being released. The student should also understand that there may be occasions when the Coordinator for IHCC Student Disability Services will share information regarding a student’s disability at his/her discretion if circumstances necessitate the sharing of information and the Coordinator has determined that there is an appropriate legitimate education interest involved.
- A student has the right to review his/her own IHCC Student Disability Services file with reasonable notification.
Form: Student Disability Services - Release of Confidential Information
Initiating Services and Accommodations
Students start the process of requesting accommodations by completing the Application for Accommodations and then submitting both the application and disability documentation to the Student Disability Services Coordinator. If you need assistance with completing the application, such as an alternate format, contact a Disability Services Coordinator in IHCC Student Disability Services.
Although you may request an accommodation at any time, you should request it as early as possible. Some accommodations may take more time to provide than others. Requesting accommodations early will help to ensure that the IHCC Student Disability Services Coordinator has enough time to review your request and provide appropriate accommodations.
Types of supportive documentation may include, but are not limited to:
- A recent IEP or 504 Plan
- A Support for Accommodation Request Form (SAR)
- A psycho-educational or neuro-psychological evaluation
- Relevant medical records
- A letter from a current physician or psychologist
Accommodations begin after the checklist below has been completed. Accommodations are not retroactive. Once you apply, you will not need to reapply unless you have additional documentation for an additional disability. If you leave IHCC for one or more terms and then return, you should contact IHCC Student Disability Services to reactivate your file.
- Complete Application for Accommodations Form
- Complete STUDENT DISABILITY SERVICES Release of Confidential Information Form
- Provide Documentation of the Disability from appropriate source (Disability Services Coordinator can offer suggestions)
- Interview with Disability Services Coordinator to complete an intake Conversation
Distribution of completed accommodation forms to appropriate instructors will follow.
Exam accommodations may give a student the chance to better demonstrate their understanding of course content. Commonly used exam accommodations include extended time, separate testing location, alternative test format, or use of a reader, dictionary, computer or scribe.
Not all students with disabilities require exam accommodations. At times, exam format and class material will be the determining factors as to whether a student will require an exam adjustment. Timed exams may be given at 1 ½ times or double the allotted time, depending on the nature of the disability.
Students are expected to take their exams at the same time as the class unless approved by the instructor. Students are expected to arrive on time for their exams. Permission of the faculty to proceed with the exam may be necessary if a student is late for an exam.
The student must discuss test accommodation arrangements with faculty. The student should remind faculty of needed testing accommodations and verify the testing arrangement.
Instructor policies regarding make-up exams, grading, and other such items apply. You are responsible for coordinating the make-up of any missed exam with your instructor.
Exam Accommodation Options:
- Take exam with the class
- Take exam with appropriate accommodations arranged by the instructor
- Take exam in the IHCC Testing Center if testing accommodation is for extended time and/or a separate testing location. Follow all IHCC Testing Center policies for exams taken at this location.
- Take exam in the Student Disability Services office if testing accommodations require more than extended time and/or a separate testing location. Exams should be scheduled with Student Disability Services by dropping by the office, sending an email ([email protected]) or calling 641-683-5749.
Students may require note-taking assistance due to a disability. Students with a variety of disabilities, including learning disabilities, mobility impairments, and hearing and visual impairments, may benefit from this service. Those who desire note-taking services should meet with their Student Disability Services Coordinator to determine eligibility.
Once eligibility is established, the student would meet the instructor to discuss the note-taker request and the desired procedures for obtaining completed notes. At IHCC we rely on volunteers within the class to perform this task.
The instructor typically has three options:
- To aid the student in finding a volunteer note-taker by making an announcement in class. This announcement should not directly reference the student with the disability. An example announcement would be “Due to a disability, a student in this class needs to receive a copy of someone’s notes. If you think you are a good note-taker, please see me after class.”
- To ask a student whom s/he believes is a good note-taker to perform this task.
- To provide a copy of the instructor’s class notes.
A supply of carbonless paper is available in the Student Disability Services office. Students are responsible to discuss with the instructor the desired procedures for obtaining the completed notes. Contact Student Disability Services if no one volunteers or if you are dissatisfied with your note-taker.
The student with a disability is still required to attend class, participate actively, and if physically possible, take some notes on his or her own. Unless an absence is related to the documented disability, and prior arrangements are made with the course instructor, notes will only be provided for the classes attended by the student. Students are not allowed to copy or distribute any of the materials supplied.
Alternate Format Texts & Other Printed Material
Students with reading or visual disabilities may request texts and other printed materials in alternative formats. Examples of alternative formats:
- MP3 Format
- Paper Enlargements
- .rtf /.doc Format
Meet with your Student Disability Service Coordinator to determine eligibility for alternative format materials. Once eligibility is determined, provide title, author, edition number and ISBN for any textbooks. In some cases, you will need to provide proof of purchase for your copy of the print textbook. Advanced notice is helpful to meet deadlines.
Check your email for notification that materials are ready. Examine to ensure that the materials are working and are in the correct format within 24 hours of receipt. If they are not correct, please report this to Student Disability Services immediately.
You must agree to the terms of a copyright agreement. You cannot make copies or share with another individual, copy, or distribute the alternate format media. You do not need to return the materials at the end of the term.
Sign Language Interpreting
Students requesting a sign language interpreter must meet with Student Disability Services staff to determine eligibility and identify their preferences and needs for the term. It is suggested this meeting occur as far in advance as possible to allow Student Disability Services sufficient time to process the request.
Students are responsible for providing at least 24 hours’ notice to both Student Disability Services and the interpreter if s/he will not attend a scheduled event or class. IHCC reserves the right to modify the manner in which services or accommodations are provided to students who fail to comply with proper notifications
Class Scheduling Guidelines
Consider your disability-related needs and issues when scheduling. Some factors to consider might be:
- What time of day do the classes meet?
- How often do classes meet?
- Can you handle back-to-back classes or do you need breaks?
- Is your course work balanced, so that you avoid an overload?
- Is there a type of work that is affected by your disability? (e.g. if you have a learning disability in reading, can you handle three classes that involve a considerable amount of reading)?
- If you have energy or mobility limitations, are you able to get to your next class on time.
Parking and Accessible Routes
Any student or visitor with a permanent or temporary mobility impairment who has a disability parking placard is eligible to use our accessible parking spaces.
If you do not currently hold a State of Iowa Disability placard, you must obtain one before parking in IHCC’s accessible parking spaces. These placards are available from the Iowa Department of Transportation, Motor Vehicle Division.
It is advised you contact IHCC Student Disability Services if you’re concerned about the conditions of any accessible route on our campus. IHCC works to ensure accessible routes are clear of snow and debris. If you find there’s a problem with any accessible route, notify the Student Disability Services Coordinator or IHCC Security immediately.
In compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), public institutions are required to allow the use of service animals on college campuses in order to achieve access to programs, activities and services. Under this policy, Indian Hills Community College does allow service animals in all buildings, classrooms, residence halls, meetings, dining areas, recreational facilities, activities and events when the animal is accompanied on campus by individuals with a disability or who indicate the service animal provides a specific service to them.
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. Miniature horses may be considered service animals in some cases. Other species of animals, whether wild or domestic, trained or untrained, are not service animals. The work or tasks performed by a service animal must be directly related to the handler’s disability.
It is recommended that students who need the assistance of a service animal in the classroom setting voluntarily register with IHCC Student Disability Services. By doing so, students will be able to:
- Document the need for an appropriate classroom accommodation
- Receive an accommodation form for their instructors at the beginning of each term
- Access additional resources and services available to students with a disability
Form: Voluntary Reporting of Service Animal on Campus
Emotional Support Animals
Indian Hills Community College, in compliance with the Fair Housing Act (FHA) may allow Emotional Support Animals (ESA) as a reasonable accommodation in residence hall rooms of students with documented disabilities. While Emotional Support Animals are permitted in college residence hall rooms, they are prohibited from public areas such as dining centers, classrooms, computer labs, or other college property.
Students with Emotional Support Animals will be responsible for the ownership of the animal, including maintaining and controlling the animal at all times. Students may be responsible for any cost associated with damages the animal causes to campus property.
It is important that you, as the student requesting an Emotional Support Animal, complete this form to the best of your ability. Return this Request for Services form to IHCC Student Disability Services along with documentation from a physician or licensed mental health professional supporting your need for this particular accommodation. The supportive documentation:
- Verifies that you meet FHA’s definition of a person with a disability.
- Describes how that animal will assist you.
- Shows the relationship between your disability and the need for assistance.
Additionally, Emotional Support Animals must have a valid license and current vaccinations on file with IHCC Student Disability Services.
Please note that eligibility for accommodations will not be determined until a completed Request for Services form and relevant documentation are on file at IHCC Student Disability Services.
Form: Emotional Support Animal in Residence
Students with disabilities needing special accommodations for the on-campus food service options should first contact the IHCC Student Disability Services office. A meeting will be established with the on-campus food service provider to discuss the necessary accommodations.
IHCC will make every effort to accommodate reasonable housing requests related to disabilities and special health needs. Students with a disability needing special housing consideration should first contact Student Disability Services to ensure the reasonableness of the requested accommodation. It is important to begin this process as much in advance as possible to ensure the availability of requested accommodations.
Student Code of Conduct
Indian Hills Community College is an academic community built on the principles of mutual respect, integrity, and honesty. The college strives to provide a community wherein individuals have the right to express their opinions and ideas, to assemble peacefully, and to associate freely in a manner that does not interfere with the rights of others and is in the confines of intellectual honesty. In order to thrive as an educational institution, the college has adopted a Student Conduct Code to promote and preserve its educational mission for the benefit of all who are invited to be a part of the community.
To view the full Student Code of Conduct, please visit the College Catalog & Student Handbook or the college website.
Grievance Policy and Procedures
Indian Hills Community College complies with all applicable federal and state regulations that prohibit discrimination on the basis of disability. These regulations affirm that any qualified person receive reasonable accommodations to ensure equal access to educational opportunities, services, programs and activities at the college.
To view the full Grievance Policy and Procedures Statement, please visit the College Catalog & Student Handbook.
Emergency Procedures for Students with Disabilities
As a student with a disability, it is important to take responsibility for your own safety. To ensure your safety, develop an emergency plan or strategy in advance.
How you respond to an emergency depends on:
- The type of emergency
- Your specific disability
- The location of your classes
For any emergency, the first step is to contact 911, making sure to indicate your specific needs.
An emergency messaging system is available at IHCC. Make sure you’ve registered to receive emergency alerts on your cell phone and through your IHCC email. Cell phones can be an effective tool for contacting emergency personnel. www.indianhills.edu/alert
Depending upon the facility and type of disability, the following evacuation information may be helpful when developing a plan with your instructor and others.
- Leave the building through any exit door. Make sure you’ve identified accessible door locations ahead of time.
- Elevators are never to be used in the event of a fire without explicit authorization by fire or police personnel.
- Evacuation may not be necessary or advisable in all situations. Many stairwells are designed to provide temporary protection from fire or other danger.
- If immediate evacuation is necessary, be aware of the following considerations:
- Wheelchairs have moveable parts; some are not designed to withstand stress or lifting.
- Wheelchairs should not be used to descend stairwells, if at all possible.
- Always consult with the person in the chair regarding how best to assist him/her.
- Only offer assistance that is consistent with your capabilities and comfort level, do not attempt to exceed your capabilities.
- Some people have conditions that can be aggravated or triggered if they are moved incorrectly.
- Stairway evacuations of individuals who use wheelchairs may be hazardous to the wheelchair user, rescuers, and others attempting to evacuate and should not be attempted by untrained personnel unless there’s no other alternative.
- A stairway must be large enough for you to sit without obstructing the flow of traffic as people exit the building via the stairway.
- If using a stairway for an area of rescue is not feasible, locate a room that is in close proximity to the stairway. If you may have difficulty opening the door, ask for assistance.
- If you’re an instructor who has a student who’s unable to use the stairs during an evacuation,
- Help the student to the top of the stairwell
- Call 911 to let them know your location
- Wait with the student until help arrives
- The dispatcher will alert the fire department to your location so they can immediately assist the student in evacuation.
It is important to let others know of your plan. In most instances, this should be the instructors of your classes, your resident advisor and housing director (if living on campus), and other IHCC faculty and staff who you may work with during a given term. Let them know the location you have selected to await rescue personnel in the case of an emergency.
In Case of Emergency
Ottumwa & North Campus:
Contact Campus Security:
Phone: (641) 683-5300
Contact Local Police:
Phone: (641) 437-7100
Retention of Disability Documents
It is highly recommended that students who supply documentation to support accommodation requests, save a copy of that documentation in a personal file. Often documents such as IEPs are destroyed after a set number of years. You may have a future need to refer to those papers.
Student Disability Services at IHCC maintains a record of student accommodations past the date of the student’s departure. Since the disability information is held in a location separate from a student’s transcript, it is advised that there may come a time that long held records may be purged do to storage issues. Maintaining a personal file of your disability information is a good practice.