Differences Between High School and College for Students with Disabilities


Roles of Students and Parents

Student is identified by the school, and accommodations are arranged by a team of parents, teachers, and the student. Student must self-identify to the Disability Services Office (DSO) and follow protocol to arrange accommodations with faculty.
Teachers approach student in need of help. Students approach professors to ask for help.
Special Education team schedules meetings to check on student progress and plan future goals. Student schedules a meeting at the beginning of each semester and works with advisors, career services, and DSO for post-college planning.
Special Education team informs teachers of student strengths and challenges through distributing the I.E.P. Student chooses which faculty and staff receives letters of accommodation—a diagnosis is not shared.
Parent has access to student records and participates in the accommodation process. Parent does not have access to student records without student’s written consent.

 Course Requirements and Testing

Teachers may modify curriculum and alter pace of assignments. All students must meet the same course requirements without modifications.
I.E.P or 504 Plan may include modifications to test formats and/or grading. All students use the same test format and are graded the same way.  Accommodations for test environment and extended time are available if approved by DSO.
Tutoring and study support may be a service provided as part of an I.E.P or 504Plan. Tutoring is not provided by DSO.  Students must seek out tutoring resources as they are available to all students.
Personal services for medical/physical disability are provided and paid for by the school. Personal services, (i.e. wheelchairs, hygiene assistance, transportation) must be sought out and paid for by the student.

 Laws and Documentation

I.D.E.A (Individuals with Disabilities Act focuses on student success. A.D.A. (Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990) provides equal access.
School provides testing/evaluation at no cost to the student’s family. If needed, testing/evaluation is arranged and paid for by the student.
Documentation focuses on determining whether the student is eligible for services based on specific disability categories in I.D.E.A. resulting in the creation of an I.E.P or 504 Plan. Documentation must provide information regarding the specific functional limitations and demonstrate the need for specific accommodations resulting in an accommodation plan.