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Elk Grove USD  |  AR  4032  Personnel

Reasonable Accommodation   

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Except when undue hardship would result to the district, the Superintendent or designee shall provide reasonable accommodation:

1. In the job application process, to any qualified job applicant with a disability

2. To enable any qualified employee with a disability to perform the essential functions of the position he/she holds or desires to hold or to enjoy equal benefits or other terms, conditions, and privileges of employment as other similarly situated employees without disabilities

No employee or job applicant who requests an accommodation for his/her physical or mental disability shall be subjected to discrimination or to any punishment or sanction, regardless of whether the request for accommodation was granted. (Government Code 12940)

The district designates the District's Risk Manager as the coordinator of its efforts to comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and to investigate any and all related complaints.

(cf. 4030 - Nondiscrimination in Employment)

Definitions

Disability, with respect to an individual, is defined as any of the following: (Government Code12926; 20 CFR 1630.2)

1. A physical or mental impairment that limits one or more of the major life activities

2. A record of such an impairment

3. Being regarded as having such an impairment

Limits shall be determined without regard to mitigating measures such as medications, assistive devices, prosthetics or reasonable accommodations, unless the mitigating measure itself limits a major life activity. (Government Code 12926)

Essential functions are the fundamental job duties of the position the individual with a disability holds or desires. The term does not include the marginal functions of the position. (Government Code 12926; 29 CFR 1630.2)

Reasonable accommodation means: (Government Code 12926; 29 CFR 1630.2)

1. For a qualified job applicant with a disability, modifications or adjustments to the job application process that enable him/her to be considered for the position he/she desires

2. For a qualified employee with a disability, modifications or adjustments to the work environment, or to the manner or circumstances under which the position the employee holds or desires is customarily performed, that enable him/her to perform the essential functions of that position or to enjoy equal benefits and privileges of employment as are enjoyed by the district's other similarly situated employees without disabilities

Qualified individual with a disability means a job applicant or employee with a disability who: (29 CFR 1630.15, 1630.2)

1. Satisfies the requisite skill, experience, education, and other job-related requirements of the employment position he/she holds or desires

2. Can perform the essential functions of the position with or without reasonable accommodation

3. Would not pose a significant risk of substantial harm, which cannot be eliminated or reduced by reasonable accommodation, to himself/herself or others in the job he/she holds or desires

Undue hardship is a determination based on an individualized assessment of current circumstances that shows that the provision of a specific accommodation would cause significant difficulty or expense to the district. (29 CFR 1630.2)

Reasonable Accommodation for Pregnancy-Related Disability and Childbirth

The District will provide reasonable accommodations to an employee who is disabled as a result of pregnancy, childbirth or related medical condition when requested by the employee and with the advice of the employee's health care provider.

Request for Reasonable Accommodation

When requesting reasonable accommodation, an employee or his/her representative shall inform the employee's supervisor that he/she needs a change at work for a reason related to a medical condition. The supervisor shall inform the coordinator of the employee's request as soon as practicable.

When requesting reasonable accommodation for the hiring process, a job applicant shall inform the coordinator that he/she will need a reasonable accommodation during the process.

When the disability or the need for accommodation is not obvious, the coordinator may ask the employee to supply reasonable documentation about his/her disability. In requesting this documentation, the coordinator shall specify the types of information that are being sought about the employee's condition, the employee's functional limitations, and the need for reasonable accommodation. The employee may be asked to sign a limited release allowing the coordinator to submit a list of specific questions to his/her health care or vocational professional.

If the documentation submitted by the employee does not indicate the existence of a qualifying disability or explain the need for reasonable accommodation, the coordinator shall request additional documentation that specifies the missing information. If the employee does not submit such additional documentation in a timely manner, the coordinator may require him/her to submit to an examination by a health care professional selected and paid for by the district.

The district may make a medical or psychological inquiry of a job applicant or require him/her to submit to a medical or psychological examination after he/she has been given a conditional offer of employment but before the commencement of his/her job duties, provided the inquiry or examination is job-related, consistent with business necessity, and required for all incoming employees in the same job classification. (Government Code 12940)

The coordinator shall not request any job applicant's or employee's genetic information except as authorized by law. (42 USC 2000ff-1, 2000ff-5)

(cf. 4161.8/4261.8/4361.8 - Family Care and Medical Leave)

In accordance with law, the coordinator shall take steps to ensure the confidentiality of information related to medical conditions or history. As applicable, he/she shall notify the supervisor or manager of the qualified individual of any reasonable accommodation granted the individual and may notify first aid and safety personnel when the disability of the qualified individual may require emergency treatment. (42 USC 12112)

(cf. 4112.6/4212.6/4312.6 - Personnel Records)

Granting Reasonable Accommodation

Upon receiving a request for reasonable accommodation from a qualified individual with a disability, the coordinator shall:

1. Determine the essential functions of the job involved

2. Engage in an informal, interactive process with the individual to review the request for accommodation, identify the precise limitations resulting from the disability, identify potential accommodations, and assess their effectiveness

3. Develop a plan for reasonable accommodation which will enable the individual to perform the essential functions of the job or gain equal access to a benefit or privilege of employment without imposing undue hardship on the district

A determination of undue hardship should be based on several factors, including: (29 CFR 1630.2)

a. The nature and net cost of the accommodation needed, taking into consideration the availability of tax credits and deductions and/or outside funding

b. The overall financial resources of the facility making the accommodation, the number of persons employed at this facility, and the effect on expenses and resources of the facility

c. The overall financial resources, number of employees, and the number, type, and location of facilities of the district

d. The type of operation of the district, including the composition, structure, and functions of the workforce and the geographic separateness and administrative or fiscal relationship of the facility making the accommodation to other district facilities

e. The impact of the accommodation on the operation of the facility, including the impact on the ability of other employees to perform their duties and the impact on the facility's ability to conduct business

The coordinator may confer with the site administrator, any medical advisor chosen by the district, and/or other district staff before making a final decision as to the accommodation.

Use of Assistive Animal as Reasonable Accommodation

Definitions:

Assistive Animals encompasses Service Animals and Therapy or Support Animals

Service Animal includes any dog that has been individually trained to do work or perform specific tasks for the benefit of an individual with a disability.

Therapy or Support Animals (sometimes referred to as comfort or companion animals) are any other animal other than a service animal, the purpose of which is to provide emotional, cognitive or other similar support to an employee with a disability. These animals are not required to be individually trained to perform a specific task.

The District recognizes that individuals with disabilities, including employees, may be accompanied on school premises and on school transportation by specially trained service animals, including guide dogs, signal dogs, or in special circumstances, miniature horses that are individually trained to do work or perform tasks for the benefit of the individual with a disability, subject to the requirements of state and federal law. (Education Code 39839; Civil Code 54.2; 28 CFR 35.136.) For an individual with a disability, a "service" animal is defined as any dog that is individually trained to do work or perform tasks related to the individual's disability and for his/her benefit. (Civil Code 54.1.) The District recognizes that the use of a therapy or support animal, the purpose of which is to provide emotional, cognitive, or other similar support to an employee with a disability, may constitute a reasonable accommodation for employees with disabilities in certain circumstances. (2 CCR 11065(a)(3).) For purposes of this policy, the term "assistive animal" encompasses service animals or support animals as defined by state and federal law. (2 CCR. 11065; 28 CFR 35.136.)

Procedures for evaluating reasonable accommodation requests for Assistive Animals

Any employee seeking the use of an assistive animal, as a reasonable accommodation to perform their job duties, should contact their direct supervisor who shall inform the coordinator of the employee's request as soon as practicable. The coordinator shall then engage the employee in the interactive process pursuant to the procedures described herein as well as all applicable state and federal laws. As part of the interactive process related to the use of an assistive animal, the District may assess: (1) whether the employee has a disability; (2) why the employee requires the presence of the assistive animal in the workplace (e.g. why the animal is necessary as an accommodation to allow the employee to perform the essential functions of the job); and (3) whether the assistive animal meets the minimal standards set forth under state and federal law and as described herein, including but not limited to whether the animal is free from offensive odors and displays appropriate habits. (2 CCR 11069(e)(2); 11069(f).) The District may also verify whether students or staff have any known allergies, asthma, or other health condition that may be aggravated by the presence of the assistive animal, in order to try and accommodate both the employee seeking reasonable accommodation and the affected individual.

Assistive animals may not engage in behavior that endangers the health or safety of employees, students, or other individuals in the workplace or is otherwise disruptive to the school community. (2 CCR 11065(a)(2)(A).) Any such animal may be excluded at the time of the threat or disruption, regardless of training or certification. All assistive animals must be under the full control of the owner or person in possession of the animal.

This may include the use of a harness, leash, tether or other effective means, such as voice control or signals, or being contained in cages or containers as appropriate. (28 CFR 35.136(d).) It is recommended that service animals wear a harness, cape, or some other identification to allow the animal to be immediately recognized as one that is "working" or "in service." All care and supervision of assistive animals, including the cleaning and immediate removal of the animal's waste, is solely the responsibility of its partner/handler.

Appeal Process

Any qualified individual with a disability who is not satisfied with the decision of the coordinator may appeal in writing to the Superintendent or designee. This appeal shall be made within 10 working days of receiving the decision and shall include:

1. A clear, concise statement of the reasons for the appeal

2. A statement of the specific remedy sought

The Superintendent or designee shall consult with the coordinator and review the appeal, together with any available supporting documents. The Superintendent or designee shall give the individual his/her decision within 15 working days of receiving the appeal.

Any further appeal for reasonable accommodation shall be considered a complaint concerning discrimination in employment and may be taken to the Governing Board in accordance with the district's procedure for such complaints.

Legal Reference:

CIVIL CODE

51 Unruh Civil Rights Act

GOVERNMENT CODE

12900-12996 Fair Employment and Housing Act

UNITED STATES CODE, TITLE 29

701-794e Vocational Rehabilitation Act

UNITED STATES CODE, TITLE 42

2000ff-1-2000ff-11 Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act of 2008

12101-12213 Americans with Disabilities Act

CODE OF FEDERAL REGULATIONS, TITLE 28

35.101-35.190 Americans with Disabilities Act, especially:

35.107 Designation of employee

36.101-36.608 Nondiscrimination on the basis of disability by public facilities

CODE OF FEDERAL REGULATIONS, TITLE 29

1630.2 Definitions

COURT DECISIONS

A.M. v. Albertsons, LLC, (2009) Cal.App.4th 455

Colmenares v. Braemar Country Club, Inc., (2003) 29 Cal.4th 1019

Chevron USA v. Echazabal, (2002) 536 U.S. 73, 122 S.Ct. 2045

US Airways, Inc. v. Barnett, (2002) 535 U.S. 391, 122 S.Ct. 1516

Management Resources:

EQUAL EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITY COMMISSION PUBLICATIONS

Enforcement Guidance: Reasonable Accommodation and Undue Hardship under the Americans with Disabilities Act, October 2002

WEB SITES

Department of Fair Employment and Housing: http://www.dfeh.ca.gov

Equal Employment Opportunity Commission: http://www.eeoc.gov

U.S. Department of Education, Office for Civil Rights: http://www.ed.gov/about/offices/list/ocr

Regulation ELK GROVE UNIFIED SCHOOL DISTRICT

approved: May 16, 1994 Elk Grove, California

revised: April 6, 1998

revised: June 1, 2016

revised: April 26, 2017