Clarify the Meaning of Fundamental Alteration When Providing Academic Accommodations

Fall
2019
Resolution Number: 
09.07
Assigned to : 
Category: 
Curriculum
Status: 
Assigned

Whereas, Title 5 §56000(e) states that academic accommodations for students with disabilities may “not include any change to curriculum or course of study that is so significant that it alters the required objectives or content of the curriculum in the approved course outline, thereby causing a fundamental alteration,” and Title 5 §56001(b) defines a fundamental alteration as “any change to a course curriculum or course of study that is so significant that it alters the required objectives or content of the curriculum in the approved course outline of the course;”

Whereas, While the California Community Colleges Chancellor’s Office guidance document Implementing Guidelines for Title 5 Regulations (v. 3.0, April 11, 2019) [1] suggests that fundamental alterations include changes to program requirements, the Title 5 definition of fundamental alterations focuses on course outlines of record, and the scenarios provided in the guidance document focus on course requirements;

Whereas, Course substitutions for degree or certificate requirements may be so significant that they also result in fundamental alterations of curriculum that adversely affect students with disabilities in their efforts to seek transfer and/or employment; and

Whereas, Many programs, such as allied health, child care, and apprenticeship programs in the construction trades, are governed by statutory and regulatory requirements that require the completion of specific coursework in order to obtain the licenses required in those fields, thus making certain course substitutions infeasible;

Resolved, That the Academic Senate for California Community Colleges clarify that the definition of fundamental alterations encompasses both course and program requirements;

Resolved, That the Academic Senate for California Community Colleges work with the California Community Colleges Chancellor’s Office, the California Association for Postsecondary Education and Disability, and other system partners to review, clarify, and revise as needed the regulatory language on “fundamental alterations” as found in Title 5 sec. 56000 et sequitur; and

Resolved, That the Academic Senate for California Community Colleges work with the California Community Colleges Chancellor’s Office (CCCCO), the California Association for Postsecondary Education and Disability, and other system partners to update the CCCCO publication “Implementation Guidelines for Title 5 Disabled Students Program & Services Regulations” (version 3.0, April 11, 2019).

MSU


[1] These guidelines are available on the DSPS Solutions website at http://www.dspssolutions.org/sites/default/files/files/Implementing_Guid...