Private Schools: ADA IN PRIVATE SCHOOLS

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Neal:  What types of accommodations under the ADA are private schools legally obligated to follow for students with ADD/ADHD? My daughter has ADHD, and the private school (which does not fall under IDEA or 504 auspices because they receive no federal funding) she goes to will not document any of the accommodations/ recommendations listed on the psychoeducational report for the teacher to follow to meet her educational/ behavioral needs. The only accommodations they will provide are preferential seating and extra time on tests.

  1. Am I supposed to wander around the community like a ghost for 2.5 hours, while waiting for my next class? There is a lunchroom only, but it is loud and people are eating and chatting, and no privacy or computer. I’m not allowed to use small devices such as phone or ipad, due to doctor’s orders–my eyes were ruined by small devices last year and I’m currently being medicated and seeing specialists to help me.

  2. I’m a teacher at a private school that just took away our reasonable and normal workroom. I now have 2.5 hours at school with no quiet room to prep my lessons, and no place to go that is a quiet place. I have an ADA accommodation for needing an indoor computer with a blue block screen (Eye disability) but they moved a teacher into my prep room who is actively teaching loud kids, while I’m expected to prep. I can’t, because I have a focus disorder. What should I do?
    Am I protected by law, in a private school, to have a reasonably quiet room to prep in? It has caused me medical issues as of last week…I’m not sure what to do.

  3. Does a private high school has the right to obtain the specific medical diagnosis of the minor from the doctor in order to grant these accomodations?

  4. My daughter has severe and sudden onset of OCD from a bacterial
    Infection at age 15, her school (independent) will
    Not grant extra time despite letters from a psychiatrist, psychologist and Yale dr treating Pans

    • If you have not done so, you can request in writing that she be evaluated for services under special ed or Section 504.

  5. What accommodations do Title III school, i..e. independent schools need to make for students as it relates with mental health needs. I.e. students who have been diagnosed as having depression, anxiety, suicidal behaviors

  6. Neal, the idea that private schools don’t have to comply with the ADA is not correct. Private schools cannot decide which accommodations they will provide.

    Title III of the ADA prohibits discrimination in public accommodations. “Public accommodations” includes private schools. Private schools must make reasonable modifications in policies, practices, and procedures.

    Private schools must also furnish auxiliary aids – interpreters, notetakers, or readers – when necessary to ensure effective communication, unless this would result in an undue burden.

    Download, read, and re-read “ADA: Testing Accommodations” from the Dept of Justice. https://www.ada.gov/regs2014/testing_accommodations.html
    You need to develop expertise on this subject.to represent your child’s interests.

    • My son’s independent high school requires three years of a foreign language for graduation. He is dyslexic and has completed two years, with extreme effort and negative effect on all of his other classes. On the advice of his neuropsychologist, we requested a waiver or substitution of the third year of Spanish. Would this ever be a reasonable accommodation that doesn’t fundamentally alter a school program or result in an undue burden? They are trying to push him to go to another school for Spanish.

      • See the link below: It seems that his independent school does not think outside the box or offer a level of of support needed for him to succeed and would prefer to not deal with his issues. Some independent schools, that are more forward thinking, substitute independent learning for foreign language (especially for LD students) and allow for an experiential approach to learning a foreign language. There are many ways to deal with this without putting an undue burden on the student. What is your son’s input into this? Would he prefer to attend an independent school that is more supportive?

        http://dyslexiahelp.umich.edu/professionals/dyslexia-school/foreign-language

      • You can check what your state rules are. In some states the law allows a student to substitute other courses for foreign languages.

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