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Amherst-Pelham Regional Public Schools

Phone

413-362-1810

Address

170 Chestnut Street,
Amherst MA 01002

Section 504

Home 5 Section 504

Dr. Faye Brady, Director of Student Services
(413) 362-1834BradyF@arps.org

     Section 504

Some students with disabilitieswho do not qualify for special education services may be entitled toservices and other accommodations under Section 504 of theRehabilitation Act of 1973 and the Americans with Disabilities Act. Toqualify as a disabled individual under Section 504, a student must: 1)have a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one ormore major life activities; 2) have a record of such an impairment, or3) be regarded as having such an impairment. In the case ofqualification under #1, the determination of such qualification shall bemade by a team of persons knowledgeable about the disability and/or thestudent. A parent/guardian/teacher, as well as other individuals likethe student’s physician, may refer the student for an evaluation underSection 504. A complete copy of the Parent’s/Guardian’s proceduralrights under Section 504 may be obtained from the principal’s office orfrom the Student Services Office.

SECTION 504/ADA GRIEVANCE PROCEDURES

The Amherst-Pelham Regional SchoolDistrict does not discriminate on the basis of disability with regard toadmission, access to services, treatment, or employment in its programsor activities. Any alleged discriminatory practices within the scope ofSection 504 or the Americans with Disabilities Act should be addressedthrough the grievance procedure which follows: 

Step 1

The person who believes he/she has avalid basis for grievance under Section 504 or the Americans withDisabilities Act shall informally discuss the complaint with thebuilding-based 504/ADA Coordinator. The building-based 504/ADA Coordinatorwill investigate and document the complaint (including dates ofmeetings, disposition and dates of disposition), and give a writtenreply to the complainant within ten (10) school days of meeting with thecomplainant. In the event that the complaint addresses a district-wideissue, then the first step would be handled by the District 504/ADACoordinator.

Step 2

If the complaint is not satisfactorilyresolved through Step 1, the alleged grievance may be filed in writingby the complainant (please see the attached form). To be considered, thewritten complaint must fully set out the circumstances giving rise tothe alleged grievance and must be filed with the District 504/ADACoordinator within ten (10) school days of disposition at Step 1. The District 504/ADA Coordinator willconduct an informal hearing within ten (10) school days of receipt ofthe written complaint. The parent, student, or employee willhave the opportunity to present evidence relevant to the issues raisedunder the grievance. The parent, student, or employee may, at their ownexpense, be assisted or represented by individuals of their choice,including legal counsel. The District 504/ADA Coordinator will presenthis/her written decision to the Superintendent and complainant withinten (10) school days of the conclusion of the hearing.

Step 3

If the complaint is not satisfactorilyresolved through step 2, the complainant may file a written appeal tothe Superintendent. To be considered, the written complaint must fullyset out the circumstances giving rise to the alleged grievance and mustbe filed with the Superintendent’s Office within ten (10) school days ofdisposition at Step 2. The Superintendent will schedule a meeting tohear the appeal within ten (10) school days after receipt of thegrievance. Within ten (10) school days of that meeting, theSuperintendent will issue a written disposition of the allegedgrievance.

Step 4

In the event that the complaint is notresolved through Step 3, the parent, student or employee may file arequest for a due process hearing before an impartial hearing officer.Such a request must be filed no later than ten (10) school days afterthe date of the Superintendent’s decision at Step 3. The impartialhearing officer shall not be an employee of the District and will be anattorney or educator knowledgeable about Section 504 and the ADA. Thehearing officer will provide the complainant and the District with theopportunity to present oral and/or written information on the grievance.The complainant and the District may be represented by counsel of theirchoosing and at their own expense. The hearing officer will render adecision no later than thirty (30) days after the conclusion of thehearing. Rather than utilizing the foregoing procedure for an impartialhearing, parents/guardians have the option of filing a Request forHearing with the Bureau of Special Education Appeals in which case theBureau of Special Education Appeals shall conduct the impartial hearingconsistent with its Hearing Rules.