Frequently Asked Questions - Disabled Students Programs and Services

Q. What is DSPS?

The Ohlone College Disabled Students Programs and Services (DSPS) is designed to open the doors to educational and occupational opportunities for students with disabilities.

Our primary purpose is to provide an opportunity for all individuals to gain maximum benefit from their educational experience. Ohlone College encourages students with disabilities to participate within the limits of their disability in the same activities and courses as other students.

To receive DSPS services, students must follow the Eligibility process and must have an open file in DSPS and also be currently enrolled in classes at Ohlone College.

Q. How do I know if I am Eligible for DSPS?

Title 5, Section 56006 currently outlines the following provisions for the determination of eligibility for DSPS services: (a) In order to be eligible for academic adjustments, auxiliary aids, services and/or instruction authorized under this chapter, a student must have a disability which is verified pursuant to subdivision (b) which results in an educational limitation identified pursuant to subdivision (c) of this section.

(b) The existence of a disability may be verified, using procedures prescribed by the Chancellor, by one of the following means:

  1. observation by certificated DSPS staff;
  2. assessment by certificated DSPS staff; or
  3. review of documentation by certificated staff provided by appropriate agencies or certified or licensed professionals outside of DSPS.

(c) The student's educational limitations must be identified by certificated staff and described in the Academic Accommodation Plan (AAP) required pursuant to Section 56022. Eligibility for each service provided must be directly related to an educational limitation consistent with Section 56000(b) and Section 56001.

Q. What are the responsibilities of students with disabilities?

  • Proved DSPS with the necessary documentation to verify a disability.
  • Students will request accommodations, alternate media, testing accommodation appointments according to DSPS guidelines and timelines.
  • Notify DSPS in advance of any absences from class or appointments if you are using interpreters, real-time captioners and/or support service providers.  Failure to notify DSPS may result in the loss of service)
  • Return any equipment on loan from DSPS at the end of each semester (if the equipment is not returned, students will be held responsible and a hold will be put on their academic records)
  • Students must maintain behavior appropriate in an educational setting.
  • Students must possess the ability to negotiate the campus facilities either independently or with assistance of an attendant provided by the student.
  • Students must possess the ability to take care of personal needs unassisted or to provide an attendant for such purposes.
  • Students must possess a stable level of health in order to benefit from a full semester/term of class participation.
  • Students are to assume personal responsibility of taking any medication.

Q. I am graduating from high school and will be attending Ohlone College. In high school, I was in Special Education classes. Does Ohlone College have Special Education classes?

Ohlone College does not have Special Education classes. You will be enrolled in the same college classes as all students. DSPS will work with eligible students to determine the accommodations you may need to assist you in being a successful college student.

Q. Will I get the same accommodations that I get with my high school IEP or 504 Plan?

A high school plan, whether IEP or 504, governs the high school setting. When you become eligible for DSPS, a DSPS counselor will meet with you to discuss your educational limitations and through an interactive process, determine the accommodations you are eligible to receive. You may or may not have similar accommodations as you did in high school.

Q. Does DSPS offer personal attendant care or Aides in the classroom?

No. Ohlone College makes every reasonable effort to accommodate individuals with disabilities according to applicable federal and state mandates. The college is not required to provide Personal Service Attendants or Aides in the classroom. However, the college does support the provision of such attendants or aides by other community agencies and entities only if the proper procedure is followed. The student will need to initiate a request and provide evidence from a qualified professional verifying how current functional limitations of the disability relate to the need for a Personal Service Attendant or Aide as a reasonable accommodation in a college setting. A Personal Service Attendant or Aide is not considered a student, and the Personal Service Attendant or Aide’s participation in class is limited to assisting the student’s accessibility needs.

Please note that a Personal Service Attendant or Aide is not allowed in the classroom unless they have registered with the DSPS office and filled out the Personal Service Attendant or Aide agreement Forms.

For more information and the Personal Service Attendant or Aide Agreement Forms, please contact the DSPS Director.

Q. I have a disability that forces me to do things that might be disruptive to my instructors and fellow students. What will happen?

Unfortunately, any disruptive behavior cannot be tolerated in college. If students are disruptive in class, even if it is something they cannot help, the instructor has the right to ask you to leave the classroom. All students must follow the student code of conduct. The Student Code of Conduct (PDF) is available online. Questions can be directed to the DSPS Director and/or the Vice President of Student Services.

Q. Will my disability information be kept confidential?

Yes. The only time we share the information about a student's disability or the services provided is when we get a court order, or when the student gives us written permission.

Q. Will my transcripts show that I was a part of DSPS?

Definitely not. No record of participation in the DSPS will appear on any permanent record from Ohlone College including transcripts.

Q. Must I stay in DSPS my whole time at Ohlone College?

No. Participation in DSPS is totally voluntary. Students may leave the program whenever they wish and rejoin it if necessary.

Q. Do I have the right to choose my counselor?

Yes. DSPS has three counselors. Students may choose which counselor to see or students can see a counselor from the General Counseling Office.

Q. I need to see a counselor immediately. What do I do?

Students can come into the DSPS Office and see a counselor. If none are available, they can see a counselor in the General Counseling Office.

Q. Do I still need to pay the student parking fees even if I have a valid DMV placard?

Yes. All students are required to pay the campus parking fee. A current and valid DMV placard only allows students to park in the designated blue parking areas.

Q. I have visual or mobility impairment. Can I get help finding my classrooms at the beginning of each semester?

Yes. We recommend that students make an appointment and come in the week before school starts.

Q. What is an accommodation?

Accommodations are support services which allow a student to have equal access to the educational process without altering fundamental requirements or without endangering the health and safety of other individuals.

Accommodations (also referred to as academic adjustments and auxiliary aids) are provided if you have a limitation in the educational setting as a result of your disability. Only qualified DSPS staff determines what accommodations will assist you.

Q. Will I get priority registration?

This is an accommodation for eligible DSPS students only during the priority registration period (which typically happens a week before general students are able to register).

Q. I tried to register online, but had a problem. What do I do?

If you are experiencing problems with registering, please call the DSPS office 510-659-6079 for assistance.

Q. What are some examples of requests that are not possible accommodations?

Some examples of requests for accommodations that will not be permitted include, but are not limited to, personal attendant care, off-campus transportation, altering the requirements of any class to make the class easier, and different grading standards for students with disabilities.

Q. How do I get my accommodations?

Each semester, after you have registered for classes, you need to complete an Accommodations Request Form. The completed Accommodations Request Form must be turned into the DSPS office by the due date, indicating what accommodations are needed for your classes. If you do not turn in your Accommodations Request Form, DSPS has no way of know what accommodations are needed, resulting in no accommodations for your classes until an Accommodations Request Form has been turn in.

Q. Who decides what accommodations I may receive?

During the intake appointment, you will have an interactive discussion with a DSPS counselor to determine what accommodations you will be eligible to receive.

Q. Can a college refuse to provide an accommodation?

Yes. All accommodations must be related to the student's disability and the related educational limitations. If a request for an accommodation is not related to the student's educational limitation, it can be denied. In this case, it may be necessary for the student to provide additional and/or different verification to substantiate the need for a new/different accommodation. It is the student's responsibility to provide this verification.

Q. Does everyone receive the same accommodations?

No. Not all students receive the same accommodations nor do all students with the same disability receive the same accommodations.

Q. Can DSPS suspend services to students with a disability?

Yes. Students utilizing academic adjustments, auxiliary aids and services have a responsibility to use the services in a responsible manner. These services may be suspended or terminated if the student misuses services or doesn’t follow established procedures.

According to Title 5 California Code of Regulations (CCR), Section 56010, “Student Responsibilities,” DSPS may suspend or terminate support services under the following conditions:

  1. Failure to adhere to DSPS written policies and procedures.
  2. Failure to adhere to the District's Standards of Conduct (Board Policy 5500).
  3. Failure to make measurable progress towards the goals established in the student's Academic Accommodation Plan (AAP) and/or failure to meet Ohlone College's academic regulations established by the college.

Students must notify the DSPS office of his/her absence prior to the time of their counseling appointment or accommodation/support service(s) scheduled to be provided. Three (3) failures to do so may result in suspension of the service for the current semester.

Appointments and accommodation/support services include the following:

  • Appointments with a DSPS counselor
  • Appointments with the Alternate Media Lab Access Specialist
  • Appointments for test proctoring
  • Sign Language Interpreter or Real-Time Captioner service

Prior to the suspension of services, the student will be notified in writing identifying the reason(s) that services will be suspended or terminated for the current semester. The letter will inform the student that he/she must meet with the DSPS Counselor within five (5) working days from the date of the letter if they want to continue services.

If the student does not schedule the meeting or fails to attend, services will be suspended for the current semester.

If the Director determines services should be continued, a signed “Contract for Continuation of Services” to reinstate services for the current semester will be given to the student.

Q. Are there any costs related to DSPS services?

No. All DSPS services are free to eligible students in the DSPS program.

Q. What do I do if I am failing a class?

See a DSPS counselor. The counselor will explain options, make suggestions and/or recommend study techniques. Never just stop going to class!!!!!! You should also discuss your concerns with you instructor(s). They are a great resource. If you feel that you cannot keep up with the class and want to drop the class. It is your responsibility to officially drop the class.

Q. I just got an email saying I am on academic probation. Now what?

Stop by or call the DSPS office 510-659-6079 to make an appointment to meet with a DSPS Counselor right away. Students who are on academic probation will not be able to register for classes until they have been cleared. Meeting with a DSPS counselor will is the first step of the process to be cleared from academic probation.

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