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Letter:
Dear Students, Faculty, Administrators and Staff:

California State University, Bakersfield is strongly committed to maintaining an environment that provides full access to educational programs, activities and facilities for all students. In order to achieve this goal, the university has a program to serve students with disabilities that is consistent with the existing and emerging legislation and regulations. (Section 504 of the Federal Rehabilitation Act of 1973, Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, and Policy for provision of Services to Students with Disabilities, CSU Office of the Chancellor. Code: AA 2002-35)

All students, including those with disabilities, have the right to be evaluated in a manner that accurately assesses the students' knowledge and skills. In the spirit of providing equal access to education, faculty may have to modify instruction methods and academic evaluation/grading practices to ensure that identified students with disabilities are not the unintended victims of discriminatory practices. Course examinations and other procedures used in evaluating the academic achievement of students with impaired sensory, perceptual, manual, or verbal skills must be administered in an equitable manner. The objective is to evaluate the student's achievement in the course rather than reflect the student's impairment. This should not be seen as changing the academic standards by which a student is judged, nor a modification of the essential elements of the course, but as an effort to provide all students equal access to a university education.

President Mitchell has delegated the authority to certify disabilities and to determine specific accommodations for students with documented disabilities to the Office of Services for Students with Disabilities. The office is staffed with trained professionals ready to assist the university in meeting the needs of students with disabilities. The university's success in safeguarding the right of equal access to academic programs, however, depends on the cooperative effort of all members of the campus community. Through joint efforts, California State University, Bakersfield can ensure that all of the disabled population are given the opportunity to receive "accommodations to facilitate or create access to full participation in higher education and in the broader community."

Sincerely,

Signature of Janice Clausen, Coordinator of Services for Students with Disabilities
Janice Clausen, Director
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