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Student Grievance Procedure
The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) prohibits the exclusion of people from jobs, services, activities, or benefits based on disabilities. In addition, Section 504 states that no otherwise qualified individual with a disability shall, solely by reason of his or her disability, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any program or activity receiving federal financial assistance from the U.S. Department of Education. Further, it specifically ensures that no qualified individual with a disability shall, on the basis of disability, be subjected to discrimination under any program or activity that receives federal financial assistance.
Consistent with its nondiscrimination policy, Gallaudet has made many accommodations and implemented technological advancements to facilitate a fully accessible, barrier-free environment. Gallaudet will, upon disclosure, attempt to make other reasonable accommodations if appropriate. Please refer to Gallaudet University Administration and Operation Manual (A & O) policy 1.10 Reasonable Accommodations.
Students who believe they have been discriminated against, in violation of the Acts, should follow the procedures described below.
Any University student who believes that he or she has been subjected to discrimination on the basis of disability or has been denied access or accommodations required by law shall have the right to invoke this Grievance Procedure. In general, this Grievance Procedure is designed to address the following types of concerns:
This Grievance Procedure, however, is not intended and shall not supersede other University policies and procedures which may exist for addressing issues of concern unrelated to disabilities for which separate University policies and procedures exist, including, for example, grade appeals. For these types of alleged violations, students should use the Student Grievance Policy procedures.
All disability-related grievances covered by these procedures must be filed within 45 days of the alleged compliance violation. The University may extend this time frame when a delay is due to circumstances beyond the students control, e.g., illness or incapacity. As an initial matter, all grievances shall be reviewed to determine whether they are submitted within a timely manner and/or whether they contain all required information. The University shall not review a grievance that is untimely or fails to contain all required information, including a clear statement of all grounds for the grievance. To facilitate a clear and prompt resolution, once initiated, a grievance shall not be expanded beyond the issues presented in the student’s initial complaint. The University reserves the right to redirect a grievance to the proper grievance procedure or to any other appropriate review procedure.
The written complaint shall include the following:
Formal Grievance Procedures
If no satisfactory resolution is reached after the above informal attempts to resolve the complaint are made, or if the student chooses to bypass the above informal complaint process, students should submit a written complaint. If a student attempts to resolve the matter informally and that attempt has failed, or the student decides to end the informal process for any other reason, the student will have an additional 10 days to file a formal complaint. A listing of all meetings and/or written attempts to resolve the issue should be included with the formal complaint.
Specified time limitations refer to the academic year, September through May. If a student presents a grievance in June or the alleged incident allegedly occurred during the summer months, the time calculation may be suspended between the end of the academic year and the opening of the following academic year in September. In such a situation, the 45-day time-frame would begin on the first day of the academic year. In addition, time limitations do not include official University holidays or other closures during the regular academic year. The term “days” refers to days when the University is open for business.
Although students are encouraged to attempt to resolve complaints pertaining to disabilities by using this grievance procedure, they have the right to file a complaint directly with the U.S. Department of Education, Office for Civil Rights (OCR):
U.S. Department of Education
Office for Civil Rights
D.C. Enforcement Office
400 Maryland Avenue, SW
Washington, D.C. 20202-1475
Telephone: 1-202-245-8300 FAX: 202-245-8301 TDD: 877-521-2172
The University prohibits retaliation against any student for filing a grievance under this process or against any other individual participating in the investigation of a grievance. Any such retaliation is against state and federal laws and Gallaudet University Policy. Retaliation may be subject to disciplinary action up to and including termination. Students or any individual who has participated in the grievance process in support of the student may file a grievance under these procedures with the University’s EEO Office if they feel they have been retaliated against.
The student’s confidentiality shall be maintained by each person involved in the informal or formal investigation or resolution of a student grievance under this policy. Any disclosures regarding the student or the investigation shall be limited to the minimum necessary to accomplish the investigation or address the student’s grievance.
Gallaudet University, chartered in 1864, is a private university for deaf and hard of hearing students.
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