Students With Disabilities

Qualifying as a Specific-Needs Student

Awarding Specific Needs Student status to a student at Florida College

  • Any Florida College student or applicant for admission who wishes to be considered for Specific-Needs Student (SNS) status must apply to the College in writing.
  • All applications for SNS status, including all supporting documentation, must be completed accurately and truthfully. Inaccurate or fraudulent applications will result in the denial or revocation of accommodations and may subject the student to further disciplinary action.
  • To apply for SNS status, any student or applicant for admission must submit a fully executed Voluntary Declaration of Disability (VDD) form to the Florida College Advising office (AO).
  • “Fully executed” means completely filled out and with all necessary supporting documentation attached.
  • Deadline for submission of VDD: July 1 (Fall Semester) – December 1 (Spring Semester)
  • Eligible students who apply for admission after the above dates, or whose VDD forms are received after the above dates, may not receive accommodations for the next semester. All applications and submissions are subject to the College’s late fees.
  • Supporting Documentation
  • The submitted VDD must have attached a formally documented clinical diagnosis and treatment plan provided directly to the College by a qualified licensed health care professional. The diagnosis must be given in both written form and as a diagnostic code consistent with the current DSM nomenclature. (DSM = Diagnostic and Statistical Manual). The written and coded diagnoses must match.
  • The diagnosis must establish that the student’s condition constitutes a true disability and limits significantly the student’s ability to suceed academically.  The specific limitations must be stated clearly and specifically.
  • A “qualified licensed health care professional” shall be an MD (such as a pediatrician, family physician, or neurologist), licensed clinical psychologist, pediatric neuropsychologist, or other clinical specialist licensed to practice and diagnose in the specialty field related to the applicant’s stated disability. Unlicensed persons and school psychometrists do not meet these qualifications.
  • All communication from the licensed health care professional must be on office letterhead and signed by the provider. Handwritten notes, copies of records, etc. must be accompanied by a provider’s cover letter that meets these requirements.
  • The applicant must provide written evidence of both current diagnosis and current treatment for the stated condition requiring accommodation. [Current means within 18 months of enrollment.] Treatment must be fully consistent with the stated diagnosis. An applicant who has a current diagnosis, but who is not participating in treatment may not be granted accommodations.
  • In general, an Individual Education Program (IEP) alone is not sufficient to establish a diagnosable disability.
  • The existence of past services does not constitute a present disability. In no case will the College accept an out-of-date (more than 18 months old) diagnosis, IEP, or an IEP which indicates either no clear disability or that the student’s academic needs have been resolved.
  • It is the applicant’s or student’s responsibility to communicate these requirements to all appropriate health professionals.
  • Letter of Accommodation
  • Students who are deemed eligible for accommodations shall receive a Letter of Accommodation (LOA) from the AO. This letter shall describe the accommodations granted.
  • Specific-Needs Student Responsibilities:
  • The College may point out to the applicant any discrepancies or omissions which may exist in the applicant’s paperwork and documentation. However, it is the responsibility of the applicant to remedy and resolve any problems with these in a timely manner.