Student Accessibility and Support Services Parents Frequently Asked Questions
Frequently asked questions and answers for parents
Frequently asked questions for parents
- HOW WILL MY STUDENT'S ACCOMMODATIONS BE DIFFERENT AT ESU THAN IN K-12 EDUCATION?
Students in high school are covered under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA). IDEA is a federally funded mandate that provides all K-12 students the right to a free and appropriate education. This includes regular or special education and related aides and services necessary to meet the needs of the student. This would include modifications to curriculum and class requirements in order to show the student is progressing satisfactorily. IDEA does not apply to post-secondary education. Students with disabilities are covered under the Americans with Disabilities Act Amendment Act (ADAAA) and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act. The ADAAA and Section 504 are civil rights legislation. This legislation provides students at the post-secondary level the right to equal access to programs and services through nondiscrimination and accommodations.
- IN HIGH SCHOOL, MY STUDENT RECEIVED SERVICES THROUGH AN IEP OR 504 PLAN? WILL THAT CONTINUE AT ESU?
It depends. In K-12 education, accommodations are often course modifications (i.e., reducing the number of assignments in a class, changing test format, etc.). Course modifications are not provided at the college level. Accommodations are provided to ensure equal access to the course content and are tailored to each individual’s disability.
- WILL I HAVE THE SAME ACCESS TO MY STUDENT’S ACCOMMODATION PROCESS AS I DID WHEN THEY WERE IN HIGH SCHOOL?
No. Once your student is admitted to ESU, or turns 18, they are protected under the Federal Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA). Under FERPA students must give parents’ permission to access their educational information. This includes communication with SASS. If your student chooses to give SASS permission to share information with you, they may complete the Student Release of Information Form. This gives SASS permission to share information with parents or others not affiliated with ESU.
- IF MY STUDENT GIVES PERMISSION FOR SASS TO SHARE INFORMATION, DOES THAT ALSO GIVE ME ACCESS TO THEIR OTHER EDUCATIONAL RECORDS AT ESU?
No. However, your student may choose to give you permission to their other educational records by completing the ESU Financial Aid, Scholarships, and Veterans Services Information Release form.
- HOW CAN I SUPPORT MY STUDENT THROUGH THE TRANSITION TO ESU?
- Encourage your student to contact SASS and register early in the process, especially if housing accommodations are requested.
- Review documentation together so your student is comfortable articulating both the diagnosis/disability and its impact on their access to post-secondary education.
- Discuss the process for requesting accommodations and the difference between accommodations and modifications with your student.
- Support them during their college career, but allow them the opportunity to take charge of their education.