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Newark USD  |  AR  4032  Personnel

Reasonable Accommodation   

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Definitions

Disability, with respect to an individual, is defined as: (29 CFR 1630.2)

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

2. A record of such an impairment; or

3. Being regarded as having such an impairment

Essential functions means the fundamental job duties of the position. (29 CFR 1630.2)

Reasonable accommodations that an employer may have to provide in connection with modifications to the work environment or adjustments in how and when a job is performed that enable an individual with a disability to enjoy equal employment opportunities include, but are not limited to: (29 CFR 1630.2)

1. Making existing facilities accessible and usable

2. Restructuring the job duties

3. Offering part-time or modified work schedules

4. Acquiring or modifying equipment

5. Changing tests, training materials or policies

6. Providing qualified readers or interpreters

7. Reassigning the employee to a vacant position

Qualified individual with a disability means an individual with a disability who satisfies the requisite skill, experience, education and other job-related requirements of the employment position and who, with or without reasonable accommodation, can perform the essential functions of such position. (29 CFR 1630.2)

Undue hardship is a determination based on an individualized assessment of current circumstances that shows that a specific reasonable accommodation would cause significant difficulty or expense. A determination of undue hardship should be based on several factors, including: (29 CFR 1630.2)

1. The nature and cost of the accommodation needed

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

3. If the facility involved in the reasonable accommodation is part of a larger entity, the overall financial resources, size, number of employees, and type and location of facilities of the employer

4. The type of operation of the employer, including the structure and functions of the workforce, the geographic separateness, and the administrative or fiscal relationship of the facility involved in making the accommodation to the employer

5. The impact of the accommodation on the operation of the facility

Requests for Reasonable Accommodation

The district designates the individual specified in BP 4030 - Nondiscrimination in Employment to coordinate its efforts to comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and to investigate complaints.

(cf. 4030 - Nondiscrimination in Employment)

(cf. 4031 - Complaints Concerning Discrimination in Employment)

When requesting reasonable accommodation, the employee or employee's representative shall inform the employee's supervisor that he/she needs a change at work for a reason related to a medical condition.

When requesting reasonable accommodation during the hiring process, a job applicant shall inform the district's coordinator for Nondiscrimination in Employment (the coordinator) that he/she will need a reasonable accommodation for the process.

Employee requests for reasonable accommodation may first be considered informally by the site administrator. The site administrator shall consult with the coordinator before any accommodation is made.

When the disability and/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 district to submit a list of specific questions to the health care or vocational professional.

If the documentation submitted by the employee does not specify the existence of an ADA disability and explain the need for reasonable accommodation, the district may require the employee to submit to an examination by a health care professional selected and paid for by the district.

Upon receiving a request to reasonably accommodate an ADA disability of a district employee, the coordinator shall:

1. Determine the essential functions of the job

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

3. Develop a plan for reasonable accommodation without imposing undue hardship on the district

To qualify for a job, an individual shall not pose a significant risk of substantial harm to himself/herself or others in the workplace which cannot be eliminated or reduced by reasonable accommodation.

The determination of whether an individual poses a significant risk of substantial harm to himself/herself or others shall be made on a case-by-case basis and shall be based on objective, factual evidence, taking into consideration the duration of the risks, the nature and severity of the potential harm, the likelihood that the potential harm will occur and the imminence of potential harm. (29 CFR 1630.2)

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

The coordinator shall notify the employee or applicant of the results of his/her determination.

Reasonable Accommodation Committee

The coordinator may appoint a Reasonable Accommodation Committee to review or assist in the development of appropriate plans to reasonably

accommodate an employee or qualified job applicant who has requested an adjustment in work duties or environment because of known physical or mental disabilities. The membership of this committee may change, depending on the particular case at hand. The committee may include:

1. A district administrator

2. A site administrator

3. A medical advisor or rehabilitation specialist

4. A certificated employee

5. A classified employee

Committee members shall be selected on the basis of their knowledge of the issues at hand, including:

1. The specific functions and duties required in the position

2. The physical work environment

3. Available accommodations

At the coordinator's discretion, the employee or applicant requesting accommodation may participate in or be excluded from committee meetings. If the employee or applicant is excluded from committee meetings, the coordinator shall communicate with him/her so that he/she has the opportunity to interact and contribute to planning the reasonable accommodation.

The coordinator shall take steps to ensure the confidentiality of information related to medical conditions.

Appeal Process

If the employee or applicant is not satisfied with the decision of the coordinator, he/she may appeal in writing to the Superintendent or designee. This appeal shall be made within 10 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 employee or applicant 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:

UNITED STATES CODE, TITLE 29

701-794e Vocational Rehabilitation Act

UNITED STATES CODE, TITLE 42

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 Direct threat

Management Resources:

EQUAL EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITY COMMISSION

Enforcement Guidance: Reasonable Accommodation and Undue Hardship under the Americans with Disabilities Act, March, 1999

WEB SITES

EEOC: http://www.eeoc.gov

Regulation NEWARK UNIFIED SCHOOL DISTRICT

approved: June 6, 2000 Newark, California