Using Law School Institutional Learning Outcomes as the Basis for Determining Essential Performance Standards and Assessing the Fundamental Nature of the Law School Degree Program
3 Pages Posted: 19 Feb 2019
Date Written: February 15, 2019
This article analyzes the process of reviewing and evaluating law student accommodation requests under the current legal standards and explores some of the challenging issues that arise in determining whether a requested accommodation is consistent with the fundamental nature of a law school’s degree program. In addressing the challenges associated with these difficult cases, the article considers whether law school institutional learning outcomes may serve as the basis for adopting clear “technical” or “essential performance standards” that could be used to evaluate accommodation requests. While using institutional learning outcomes as the basis to set or revise essential performance standards may allow for consistency in determining reasonable accommodations and/or the fundamental nature of a school’s program, certain institutional learning outcomes may not provide the specificity necessary to articulate a particular essential skill or ability, nor meet other requirements of Section 504 or the ADA.
Keywords: Section 504, ADA compliance, law student accommodation reqeusts, learning outcomes
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