Page images
PDF
EPUB

Under $ 104.36, a recipient must establish a system of due process procedures to be afforded to parents or guardians before the recipient takes any action regarding the identification, evaluation, or educational placement of a person who, because of handicap, needs or is believed to need special education or related services. This section has been revised. Because the due process procedures of the EHA, incorporated by reference in the proposed section 504 regu. lation, are inappropriate for some recipients not subject to that Act, the section now specifies minimum necessary procedures: notice, a right to inspect records, an impartial hearing with a right to representation by counsel, and a review procedure. The EHA procedures remain one means of meeting the regulation's due process requirements, however, and are recommended to recipients as a model.

26. Nonacademic services. Section 104.37 requires a recipient to provide nonacademic and extracurricular services and activities in such manner as is necessary to afford handicapped students an equal opportunity for participation. Because these services and activities are part of a recipient's education program, they must, in accordance with the provisions of $ 104.34, be provided in the most integrated setting appropriate.

Revised paragraph (c)(2) does permit separation or differentiation with respect to the provision of physical education and athletics activities, but only if qualified handicapped students are also allowed the opportunity to compete for regular teams or participate in regular activities. Most handicapped students are able to participate in one or more regular physical education and athletics activities. For example, a student in a wheelchair can participate in regular archery course, as can a deaf student in a wrestling course.

Finally, the one-year transition period pro led in a proposed section was deleted in response to the almost unanimous objection of commenters to that provision.

27. Preschool and adult education. Section 104.38 prohibits discrimination on the basis of handicap in preschool and adult education programs. Former paragraph (b), which emphasized that compensatory programs for disadvantaged children are subject to section 504, has been deleted as unnecessary, since it is comprehended by paragraph (a).

28. Private education. Section 104.39 sets forth the requirements applicable to recipients that operate private education programs and activities. The obligations of these recipients have been changed in two significant respects: first, private schools are subject to the evaluation and due process provisions of the subpart only if they operate special education programs; second, under $ 104.39(b), they may charge more for

providing services to handicapped students than to nonhandicapped students to the extent that additional charges can be justified by increased costs.

Paragraph (a) of $ 104.39 is intended to make clear that recipients that operate private education programs and activities are not required to provide an appropriate education to handicapped students with special educational needs if the recipient does not offer programs designed to meet those needs. Thus, a private school that has no program for mentally retarded persons is neither required to admit such a person into its program nor to arrange or pay for the provision of the person's education in another program. A private recipient without a special program for blind students, however, would not be permitted to exclude, on the basis of blindness, a blind applicant who is able to participate in the regular program with minor adjustments in the manner in which the program is normally offered.

SUBPART E-POSTSECONDARY EDUCATION Subpart E prescribes requirements for nondiscrimination in recruitment, admission, and treatment of students in postsecondary education programs and activities, including vocational education.

29. Admission and recruitment. In addition to a general prohibition of discrimination on the basis of handicap in § 104.42(a), the regulation delineates, in g 104.42(b), specific prohibitions concerning the establishment of limitations on admission of handicapped students, the use of tests or selection criteria, and preadmission inquiry. Several changes have been made in this provision.

Section 104.42(b) provides that postsecondary educational institutions may not use any test or criterion for admission that has a disproportionate, adverse effect on handicapped persons unless it has been validated as a predictor of academic success and alternate tests or criteria with a less disproportionate, adverse effect are shown by the Department to be available. There are two sig. nificant changes in this approach from the July 16 proposed regulation.

First, many commenters expressed concern that $ 104.42(b)(2)(ii) could be interpreted to require a "global search" for alternate tests that do not have a disproportionate, adverse impact on handicapped persons. This was not the intent of the provision and, therefore, it has been amended to place the burden on the Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights, rather than on the recipient, to identify alternate tests.

Second, a new paragraph (d), concerning validity studies, has been added. Under the proposed regulation, overall success in an education program, not just first-year grades, was the criterion against which admissions tests were to be validated. This approach has been changed to reflect the comment of professional testing services that use of first year grades would be less disruptive of present practice and that periodic validity studies against overall success in the education program

would be sufficient check on the reliability of first-year grades.

Section 104.42(b)(3) also requires a recipient to assure itself that admissions tests are selected and administered to applicants with impaired sensory, manual, or speaking skills in such manner as is necessary to avoid unfair distortion of test results. Methods have been developed for testing the apti. tude and achievement of persons who are not able to take written tests or even to make the marks required for mechanically scored objective tests; in addition, methods for testing persons with visual or hearing impairments are available. A recipient, under this paragraph, must assure itself that such methods are used with respect to the selection and administration of any admissions tests that it uses.

Section 104.42(b)(3)(iii) has been amended to require that admissions tests be administered in facilities that, on the whole, are accessible. In this context, “on the whole" means that not all of the facilities need be accessibile so long as a sufficient number of facilities are available to handicapped persons.

Revised $ 104.42(b)(4) generally prohibits preadmission inquiries as to whether an applicant has a handicap. The considerations that led to this revision are similar to those underlying the comparable revision of § 104.14 on preemployment inquiries. The regulation does, however, allow inquiries to be made, after admission but before enrollment, as to handicaps that may require accommodation.

New paragraph (c) parallels the section on preemployment inquiries and allows postsecondary institutions to inquire about applicants' handicaps before admission, subject to certain safeguards, if the purpose of the inquiry is to take remedial action to correct past discrimination or to take voluntary action to overcome the limited participation of handicapped persons in postsecondary educational institutions.

Proposed § 104.42(c), which would have allowed different admissions criteria in certain cases for handicapped persons, was widely misinterpreted in comments from both handicapped persons and recipients. We have concluded that the section is unnecessary, and it has been deleted.

30. Treatment of students. Section 104.43 contains general provisions prohibiting the discriminatory treatment of qualified handicapped applicants. Paragraph (b) requires recipients to ensure that equal opportunities are provided to its handicapped students in education programs and activities that are not operated by the recipient. The

recipient must be satisfied that the outside education program or activity as a whole is nondiscriminatory. For example, a college must ensure that discrimination on the basis of handicap does not occur in connection with teaching assignments of student teachers in elementary or secondary schools not operated by the college. Under the "as a whole" wording, the college could continue to use elementary or secondary school systems that discriminate if, and only if, the college's student teaching program, when viewed in its entirety, offered handicapped student teachers the same range and quality of choice in student teaching assignments afforded nonhandicapped students.

Paragraph (c) of this section prohibits a recipient from excluding qualified handicapped students from any course, course of study, or other part of its education program or activity. This paragraph is designed to eliminate the practice of excluding handicapped persons from specific courses and from areas of concentration because of factors such as ambulatory difficulties of the student or assumptions by the recipient that no job would be available in the area in question for a person with that handicap.

New paragraph (d) requires postsecondary institutions to operate their programs and activities so that handicapped students are provided services in the most integrated setting appropriate. Thus, if a college had several elementary physics classes and had moved one such class to the first floor of the science building to accommodate students in wheelchairs, it would be a violation of this paragraph for the college to concentrate handicapped students with no mobility impairments in the same class.

31. Academic adjustments. Paragraph (a) of $ 104.44 requires that a recipient make certain adjustments to academic requirements and practices that discriminate or have the effect of discriminating on the basis of handicap. This requirement, like its predecessor in the proposed regulation, does not obligate an institution to waive course or other academic requirements. But such institutions must accommodate those requirements to the needs of individual handicapped students. For example, an institution might permit an otherwise qualified handicapped student who is deaf to substitute an art appreciation or music history course for a required course in music appreciation or could modify the manner in which the music appreciation course is conducted for the deaf student. It shoud be stressed that academic requirements that can be demonstrated by the recipient to be essential to its program of instruction or to particular degrees need not be changed.

Paragraph (b) provides that postsecondary institutions may not impose rules that have the effect of limiting the participation of handicapped students in the education program. Such rules include prohibition of tape recorders or braillers in classrooms and dog guides in campus buildings. Several recipients expressed concern about allowing students to tape record lectures because the professor may later want to copyright the lectures. This problem may be solved by requiring students to sign agreements that they will not release the tape recording or transcription or otherwise hinder the professor's ability to obtain a copyright.

Paragraph (c) of this section, concerning the administration of course examinations to students with impaired sensory, manual, or speaking skills, parallels the regulation's provisions on admissions testing (§ 104.42(b)) and will be similarly interpreted.

Under $ 104.44(d), a recipient must ensure that no handicapped student is subject to discrimination in the recipient's program because of the absence of necessary auxiliary educational aids. Colleges and universities expressed concern about the costs of compliance with this provision.

The Department emphasizes that recipients can usually meet this obligation by assisting students in using existing resources for auxiliary aids such as state vocational rehabilitation agencies and private charitable organizations. Indeed, the Department anticipates that the bulk of auxiliary aids will be paid for by state and private agencies, not by colleges or universities. In those circumstances where the recipient institution must provide the educational auxiliary. aid, the institution has flexibility in choosing the methods by which the aids will be supplied. For example, some universities have used students to work with the institution's handicapped students. Other institutions have used existing private agencies that tape texts for handicapped students free of charge in order to reduce the number of readers needed for visually impaired students.

As long as no handicapped person is excluded from a program because of the lack of an appropriate aid, the recipient need not have all such aids on hand at all times. Thus, readers need not be available in the recipient's library at all times so long as the schedule of times when a reader is available is established, is adhered to, and is sufficient. Of course, recipients are not required to maintain a complete braille library.

32. Housing. Section 104.45(a) requires postsecondary institutions to provide housing to handicapped students at the same cost as they provide it to other students and in a convenient, accessible, and comparable manner. Commenters, particularly blind persons pointed out that some handicapped persons can live in any college housing and need not wait to the end of the transition period in subpart C to be offered the same

variety and scope of housing accommodations given to nonhandicapped persons. The Department concurs with this position and will interpret this section accordingly.

A number of colleges and universities reacted negatively to paragraph (b) of this section. It provides that, if a recipient assists in making off-campus housing available to its students, it should develop and implement procedures to assure itself that offcampus housing, as a whole, is available to handicapped students. Since postsecondary institutions are presently required to assure themselves that off-campus housing is provided in a manner that does not discrimi. nate on the basis of sex (8 106.32 of the title IX regulation), they may use the procedures developed under title IX in order to comply with $ 104.45(b). It should be emphasized that not every off-campus living accommodation need be made accessible to handicapped persons.

33. Health and insurance. A proposed section, providing that recipients may not discriminate on the basis of handicap in the provision of health related services, has been deleted as duplicative of the general provisions of $ 104.43. This deletion represents no change in the obligation of recipients to provide nondiscriminatory health and insurance plans. The Department will continue to require that nondiscriminatory health services be provided to handicapped students. Recipients are not required, however, to provide specialized services and aids to handicapped persons in health programs. If, for example, a college infirmary treats only simple disorders such as cuts, bruises, and colds, its obligation to handicapped persons is to treat such disorders for them. 34.

Financial assistance. Section 104.46(a), prohibiting discrimination in providing financial assistance, remains substantively the same. It provides that recipients may not provide less assistance to or limit the eligibility of qualified handicapped persons for such assistance, whether the assistance is provided directly by the recipient or by another entity through the recipient's sponsorship. Awards that are made under wills, trusts, or similar legal instruments in a discriminatory manner are permissible, but only if the overall effect of the recipi. ent's provision of financial assistance is not discriminatory on the basis of handicap.

It will not be considered discriminatory to deny, on the basis of handicap, an athletic scholarship to a handicapped person if the handicap renders the person unable to qualify for the award. For example, a student who has a neurological disorder might be denied a varsity football scholarship on the basis of his inability to play football, but a deaf person could not, on the basis of handicap, be denied a scholarship for the school's diving team. The deaf person could, however, be denied a scholarship on the basis of comparative diving ability.

Commenters on § 104.46(b), which applies to assistance in obtaining outside employ. ment for students, expressed similar concerns to those raised under $ 104.43(b), concerning cooperative programs. This paragraph has been changed in the same manner as $ 104.43(b) to include the "as a whole" concept and will be interpreted in the same manner as $ 104.43(b).

35. Nonacademic services. Section 104.47 establishes nondiscrimination standards for physical education and athletics counseling and placement services, and social organizations. This section sets the same standards as does $ 104.38 of subpart D, discussed above, and will be interpreted in a similar fashion.

SUBPART F-HEALTH, WELFARE, AND SOCIAL

SERVICES Subpart F applies to recipients that operate health, welfare, and social service programs. The Department received fewer comments on this subpart than on others.

Although many commented that subpart F lacked specificity, these commenters provided neither concrete suggestions nor addi. tions. Nevertheless, some changes have been made, pursuant to comment, to clarify the obligations of recipients in specific areas. In addition, in an effort to reduce duplication in the regulation, the section governing recipients providing health services has been consolidated with the section regulating providers of welfare and social services. Since the separate provisions that appeared in the proposed regulation were almost identical, no substantive change should be inferred from their consolidation.

Several commenters asked whether subpart F applies to vocational rehabilitation agencies whose purpose is to assist in the rehabilitation of handicapped persons. To the extent that such agencies receive financial assistance from the Department, they are covered by subpart F and all other relevant subparts of the regulation. Nothing in this regulation, however, precludes such agencies from servicing only handicapped persons. Indeed, § 104.4(c) permits recipients to offer services or benefits that are limited by federal law to handicapped persons or class. es of handicapped persons.

Many comments suggested requiring state social service agencies to take an active role in the enforcement of section 504 with regard to local social service providers. The Department believes that the possibility for federal-state cooperation in the administration and enforcement of section 504 warrants further consideration.

A number of comments also discussed whether section 504 should be read to require payment of compensation to institu. tionalized handicapped patients who per

form services for the institution in which they reside. The Department of Labor has recently issued a proposed regulation under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) that covers the question of compensation for institutionalized persons. 42 FR 15224 (March 18, 1977). This Department will seek information and comment from the Department of Labor concerning that agency's experience administering the FLSA regulation.

36. Health, welfare, and other social service providers. Section 104.52(a) has been expanded in several respects. The addition of new paragraph (a)(2) is intended to make clear the basic requirement of equal opportunity to receive benefits or services in the health, welfare, and social service areas. The paragraph parallels $ $ 104.4(b)(ii) and 104.43(b). New paragaph (a)(3) requires the provision of effective benefits or services, as defined in g 104.4(b)(2) (i.e., benefits or services which "afford handicapped persons equal opportunity to obtain the same result (or) to gain the same benefit * • *").

Section 104.52(a) also includes provisions concerning the limitation of benefits or services to handicapped persons and the subjection of handicapped persons to different eligibility standards. One common misconception about the regulation is that it would require specialized hospitals and other health care providers to treat all handicapped persons. The regulation makes no such requirement. Thus, a burn treatment center need not provide other types of medical treatment to handicapped persons unless it provides such medical services to nonhandicapped persons. It could not, however, refuse to treat the burns of a deaf person because of his or her deafness.

Commenters had raised the question of whether the prohibition against different standards of eligibility might preclude recipients from providing special services to handicapped persons or classes of handicapped persons. The regulation will not be so interpreted, and the specific section in question has been eliminated. Section 104.4(c) makes clear that special programs for handicapped persons are permitted.

A new paragraph (a)(5) concerning the provision of different or separate services or benefits has been added. This provision prohibits such treatment unless necessary to provide qualified handicapped persons with benefits and services that are as effective as those provided to others.

Section 104.52(b) has been amended to cover written material concerning waivers of rights or consent to treatment as well as general notices concerning health benefits or services. The section requires the recipi. ent to ensure that qualified handicapped persons are not. denied effective notice be. cause of their handicap. For example, recipients could use several different types of APPENDIX B TO PART 104-GUIDELINES

FOR ELIMINATING DISCRIMINATION
AND DENIAL OF SERVICES ON THE
BASIS OF RACE, COLOR, NATIONAL
ORIGIN, SEX, AND HANDICAP IN VO-
CATIONAL CDUCATION PROGRAMS

EDITORIAL NOTE: For the text of these guidelines, see 34 CFR part 100, Appendix B.

PART 105-ENFORCEMENT OF NON

DISCRIMINATION ON THE BASIS
OF HANDICAP IN PROGRAMS OR
ACTIVITIES CONDUCTED BY THE
DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION

notice in order to reach persons with impaired vision or hearing, such as brailled messages, radio spots, and tacticle devices on cards or envelopes to inform blind persons of the need to call the recipient for further information.

Section 104.52(c) is a new section requiring recipient hospitals to establish a procedure for effective communication with persons with impaired hearing for the purpose of providing emergency health care. Although it would be appropriate for a hospi. tal to fulfill its responsibilities under this section by having a full-time interpreter for the deaf on staff, there may be other means of accomplishing the desired result of assuring that some means of communication is immediately available for deaf persons needing emergency treatment.

Section 104.52(c), also a new provision, requires recipients with fifteen or more employees to provide appropriate auxiliary aids for persons with impaired sensory, manual, or speaking skills. Further, the Assistant Secretary may require a small provider to furnish auxiliary aids where the provision of aids would not adversely affect the ability of the recipient to provide its health benefits or service.

37. Treatment of Drug Addicts and Alcoholics. Section 104.53 is a new section that prohibits discrimination in the treatment and admission of drug and alcohol addicts to hospitals and outpatient facilities. Section 104.53 prohibits discrimination against drug abusers by operators of outpatient facilities, despite the fact that section 407 pertains only to hospitals, because of the broader application of section 504. This provision does not mean that all hospitals and outpatient facilities must treat drug addiction and alcoholism. It simply means, for example, that a cancer clinic may not refuse to treat cancer patients simply because they are also alcoholics.

38. Education of institutionalized persons. The regulation retains $ 104.54 of the proposed regulation that requires that an appropriate education be provided to qualified handicapped persons who are confined to residential institutions or day care centers.

SUBPART G-PROCEDURES In $ 104.61, the Secretary has adopted the title VI complaint and enforcement procedures for use in implementing section 504 until such time as they are superseded by the issuance of a consolidated procedureal regulation applicable to all of the civil rights statutes and executive orders administered by the Department. (45 FR 30936, May 9, 1980, as amended at 55 FR 52141, Dec. 19, 1990)

Sec. 105.1 Purpose. 105.2 Application. 105.3 Definitions. 105.4–105.9 (Reserved) 105.10 Self-evaluation. 105.11 Notice. 105.12-105.19 (Reserved) 105.20 General prohibitions against dis

crimination. 105.21–105.29 (Reserved) 105.30 Employment. 105.31 Program accessibility: Discrimina

tion prohibited. 105.32 Program accessibility: Existing fa

cilities. 105.33 Program accessibility: New con

struction and alterations. 105.34–105.39 (Reserved) 105.40 Communications. 105.41 Compliance procedures. 105.42 Effective date.

AUTHORITY: 29 U.S.C. 794, unless otherwise noted.

SOURCE: 55 FR 37168, Sept. 7, 1990, unless otherwise noted.

8 105.1 Purpose.

The purpose of this part is to effectuate section 119 of the Rehabilitation, Comprehensive Services, and Developmental Disabilities Amendments of 1978, which amended section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 to prohibit discrimination on the basis of handicap in programs or activities conducted by Executive agencies or the United States Postal Service.

§ 105.2 Application.

This part applies to all programs or activities conducted by the Depart

« PreviousContinue »