To receive accommodations, students must document their disabilities and meet with a disabilities services provider (DSP). Currently the person to contact is Virginia DeMers, Director of the Academic Resource Center.
- Conversation can begin before a student comes to campus, through email, phone conversations or meetings between a DSP students and parents / legal guardians. To obtain accommodations, new students must meet with the DSP to determine appropriate accommodations for the current semester and complete the necessary paperwork.
- Requests for housing accommodation (also called special consideration) should be submitted with the housing contract. Students requesting special housing considerations should check the appropriate option on the contract. They will need to submit information and documentation of the reasons for special requests. Housing is assigned based on the date of receipt of the contract, so early application is strongly encouraged. Questions about housing options and restrictions should be directed to the Office of Residence Life. The DSP is always happy to answer questions in these regards as well. Requests for emotional support animals should be addressed to the DSP no later than 60 days prior to the start of classes.
- Students themselves are the first and most important source of information. However, documentation about diagnosis and past services provides valuable—and sometimes essential–guidance to the disabilities office as they determine the right accommodations. So please do submit the documentation you have.
- Students should contact the DSP before or during the first weeks of the semester to arrange accommodations. New students must meet in person with the DSP. Returning students (see below for more details) may make requests for renewed accommodations online. Accommodations for a given semester usually cannot be completed more than a month before classes begin.
- Accommodations are NOT retroactive. Students may request accommodations at any time in the academic year / semester, but the services will apply only going forward. For example, if a student requests testing accommodations after the first exam, the grade received on that exam—whether impacted by the disability or not—will stand.
- When the student and DSP agree to specific accommodations, students will sign an agreement about the services to be received and a release of information to inform appropriate members of the Ringling community (mostly faculty members), so accommodations can be implemented. What information to provide and to whom will be part of the conversation. All information is confidential and the student must give permission for all communication about a disability or the limits it poses. The agreement will remain in place while the student is a student or until it is updated with new requests—at an in person meeting.
- Students will receive a copy of the agreement, an authorized release form specific to Disabilities Services and a copy of the letter of agreement itself.
- The DSP will email the letter file to all the student’s present instructors so that teachers are aware of students’ needs and students can discuss their concerns.
- For testing accommodations, field trips and special events, for example, students will notify DSP and instructors of the event and the accommodations needed in a timely way so that plans can be made for the accommodations.
- Students must request accommodations each semester when they will need services. Accommodations agreements are for one semester only because accommodations and instructors vary from semester to semester. The new online database allows returning students to renew easily, without a meeting, if the accommodations remain the same for the new semester. Any new or modified accommodation must be discussed in person with a DSP.
- Difficulties and concerns about accommodations should be reported to the DSP at the ARC as soon as possible.
- Students dissatisfied with the accommodations assigned or with the delivery of accommodations may submit an appeal. Every effort will be made to resolve such issues in a timely way. Students may submit a complaint at any time to appropriate government agencies responsible for oversight of disability services, such as the Office for Civil Rights or Department of Justice.
Accommodations processes and policies are different in college from high school. Copies of policies at Ringling College are available on request from the DSP at the ARC.
For further information, please contact Virginia DeMers.
941 359 7627