Student Rights

Disability Services
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What is Considered a Disability Under the Law
A disability is defined by the Americans with Disabilities Act (as amended in 2008) as a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities, such as caring for one’s self, performing manual tasks, walking, seeing, hearing, speaking, breathing, learning, or working. A student must be otherwise qualified to participate in any academic program at Parkland College; therefore, a student with a disability must be able to meet or exceed any technical, essential, academic, behavioral, and professional standards as set forth by the College or by his/her program of choice.
Examples of physical or mental impairments may include, but are not limited to:
  • AIDS
  • Attention deficit disorder
  • Bipolar disorder
  • Cancer
  • Cerebral palsy
  • Chronic fatigue syndrome
  • Depression
  • Diabetes
  • Epilepsy
  • Hearing loss/deafness
  • Learning disabilities
  • Multiple sclerosis
  • Muscular dystrophy
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder
  • Traumatic brain injury
  • Ulcerative colitis
  • Visual impairments/blindness

Conditions NOT considered a disability:
  • Temporary impairments such as broken limbs, sprains, or infections (but see additional information)
  • Obesity (except in unusual instances when it is the result of a medical condition)
  • Impairments that do not substantially limit a major life activity
  • Pregnancy
  • English as a Second Language
  • Advanced age (although severe hearing loss and arthritis could be considered a disability).

Grievance Procedure
Students with disabilities who experience a situation or a conflict in which they perceive that their rights have not been fully recognized or have been compromised in some manner may resolve the conflict by following the College’s process for the resolution of grievances as set forth in the Parkland College Student Policy and Procedures Manual.

The sequence of contacts for the internal process is:
1) Director, Office of Disability Services
2) Dean of Students
3) Vice President for Student Services/Section 504/ADA Compliance Officer

Grievances may be resolved on an informal basis or on a formal basis. Every attempt will be made to resolve all grievances internally at the point of origin in a timely manner. Although students with disabilities are encouraged to attempt to resolve a grievance within the campus process, they have the right to file any grievance directly with the Office for Civil Rights, Chicago.Visit the Office for Civil Rights website for more information.

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