Student Disability Services

In accordance with the requirement of 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and Title II of the Americans With Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA) South Texas College will not discriminate against qualified individuals with disabilities on the basis of disability in its services, programs, or activities. South Texas College does not discriminate on the basis of disability in its hiring or employment practices and complies with all regulations promulgated by the U.S. Dept. of Education, the U.S. Dept. of Justice and the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.

Students or prospective students requiring special accommodations should contact the Student Disability Services (SDS) office at 956-872-2173. Accommodation requests must be in writing. Students are required to provide documentation to verify his/her disability before accommodations are provided.

Services and accommodations as required by the Americans with Disabilities Act may include: assessment for special needs, academic advisement, short-term personal counseling, assistance with the admission process, registration, financial aid application, applications for TSI testing accommodations, academic appeals, arrangements for sign language interpreters, tutorial assistance, the use of provision of adaptive equipment, readers, scribes, instructional/testing/classroom modifications, liaison between students, faculty, staff and others, and referral services to other South Texas College departments or outside service providers.

South Texas College is an equal opportunity institution which provides educational opportunities without discrimination on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, age, national origin, disability or veteran students in accordance with the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, Section 504 of Rehabilitation Act 1973, and Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 which prohibits discrimination based on sex.

Frequently Asked Questions

Who can I contact for accommodations at South Texas College?

Each campus has a Counseling and Disability Student Services office contact person and you can contact them at the following phone numbers.

  • Pecan Campus: 956-872-2173
  • Mid-Valley Campus: 956-872-1229
  • Starr County Campus: 956-488-5853
  • Nursing and Allied Health Campus: 956-872-3077
  • Technology Campus: 956-872-6125

Who is a qualified student with a disability?

South Texas College uses the American with Disabilities Act (ADA) as a guide to define disability. According to the Americans with Disabilities Act, a person with a disability is one who:

  1. has a physical or mental impairment which substantially limits a major life activity;
  2. has a record or history of such an impairment; or
  3. is regarded as having such an impairment by an appropriate expert.

Major life activities include, but are not limited to, walking, seeing, hearing, speaking, breathing, learning, working, caring for oneself, and performing manual tasks.

These impairments may be present among people with learning disabilities, emotional disturbances, chronic health impairments, attention deficit disorder, diabetes, asthma, physical disabilities, vision, speech, or hearing impairments, or other conditions.

What accommodations (services) are available?

The Student Disability Services provides a wide variety of accommodations for students. A list can be obtained by contacting any of the campus offices listed above. The following is an example of some of the accommodations but it is not limited to this list.

  • Adjustable Chair, Desk, Table
  • Alternative Test Format
  • Assistive Listening Devices
  • Assistive Technology: JAWS, Kurzweil, Omnipage Pro, Read and Write Gold, Zoom Text
  • Audio Books
  • Braille Printer
  • Calculator
  • CCTV Video Magnifier
  • Digital Recorder
  • Distraction-Reduced Testing Environment
  • Extended Time for Test
  • Large Print
  • Lecture Notes
  • Magnifier
  • NCR Paper
  • Note taker, Reader, Scribe
  • Open and Closed Captioning
  • Preferential Seating
  • Sign Language Interpreter

Accommodations will be provided by the counselor depending on the needs and request of each individual student.

What is a reasonable accommodation?

A reasonable accommodation is a modification or adjustment to a course, program, service, job, activity, or facility that enables a qualified individual with a disability to have an equal opportunity to attain the same level of performance or to enjoy equal benefits and privileges as are available to an individual without a disability. Some common academic accommodations include but not limited to extended time on tests, use of peer note takers, use of computer with spell-check, and provision of sign language interpreters.

What documentation is needed before receiving accommodations?

A student is responsible for providing current documentation. Documentation must not be older than three (3) years. The documentation must be on an official letterhead with an address, phone/fax, and name of the evaluator with professional credentials and date of evaluation. ARD’s, IEP’s, 504’s and Transitional Plan’s provide helpful information, however, are not sufficient documentation. The documentation should address diagnosis, prognosis, functional limitations, and educational recommendations.

A student is required to provide Student Disability Services with the necessary documentation from an appropriate expert that the disability exists before any classroom accommodation will be provided. This documentation must be current (within the last 3 years). In Salvador v. Bell, the Office for Civil Rights (OCR) ruled that the institution was under no obligation to provide accommodation for a student with a disability who fails to provide documentation of the disability (Jarrow, 1991).

The determination of whether an individual has a disability under ADA is not based upon the name or diagnosis of the impairment, but rather upon the impact of that impairment on the life of the individual.

How does a student request accommodation services?

After completing the admissions process students may come in to see a counselor at the campus the student will attend. Students are required to submit medical or supportive documentation of their disability when they come in. Accommodations and procedures for notifying the instructors are discussed with the student.

What is the cost for these services?

There is no additional cost to the student for these services.

How are Academic Accommodations Arranged?

The Student Disability Services has a system for students who anticipate needing any type of accommodations. Students should meet with their instructor(s) in person the first day of class to discuss their need for disability accommodation. To help facilitate this dialogue, Student Disability Services provides students with accommodation memos that identify their academic accommodations and services each term. During the meeting, the student and the instructor should talk about the student's accommodation needs, establish how specified accommodations will be arranged throughout the semester, and explore any questions or concerns that either the student or the instructor have regarding the accommodation plan. Each semester, accommodations will become active as soon as students return the accommodation memo signed by each of their instructors to the Student Disability Services.

How often must a student request services?

Student Disability Services are provided based upon disability requests of the student. Since different classes may require different accommodations it is important to look at a student's needs on a semester by semester basis. Services, therefore, must be requested at least once at the beginning of each semester or at the time a need is identified within a semester. Every semester students must pick up their accommodation memo at the Student Disability Services.

Is special parking available?

Yes, special parking for students with disabilities is provided at each campus. You must have a South Texas College disability parking sticker on your vehicle in order to use these parking spaces. Proof of disability is required for you to obtain a disability parking sticker. For more information contact the South Texas College Department of Public Safety at 956-872-4444.

Does South Texas College provide Attendant Care Services?

No, South Texas College does not provide or arrange for personal attendant care but, South Texas College will provide the student with a list of agencies that provide this service.

How Does A Student File a Complaint About Student Disability Services?

Informal Complaint Procedure

Students are encouraged to meet with their assigned Counselor who provided the accommodations memo and voice their concerns with the accommodations they have been provided. The student may also meet with the Coordinator of Student Disability Services and/or the Director of Counseling. Counseling and Student Disability Services may be reached at 956-872-2173. If the student is not satisfied with the result, they may file a formal complaint.

Formal Complaint Procedure at South Texas College

A formal complaint may be filed with South Texas College, Office of Student Rights and Responsibilities located at the Pecan Campus, Student Services Bldg. K Rm 2.1106, Phone: 956-872-2180, email: or visit

Formal Complaint Procedure Outside of South Texas College

A student may also file a formal complaint at the Office for Civil Rights – Dallas Office – U.S. Department of Education; 1999 Bryan Street, Suite 1620, Dallas, Texas 75201-6810; Telephone 214-661-9600; Fax 214-661-9587; TDD 800-877-8339; email:

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