The Right to Privacy Act ensures that all disability-related contact with the DSS office remains confidential unless students sign a written release. This means that a DSS counselor will not discuss anything pertaining to students with any of their instructors or anybody else, without the student's expressed written permission. However, DSS is allowed to verify eligibility for specific services.
For reasons of confidentiality, DSS staff members may not discuss a student's disability status with either faculty or staff. As a result, students are encouraged to talk with their instructors about their specific accommodation needs. When necessary, DSS staff may intervene on the student's behalf to facilitate provision of services or to help students communicate their needs to others.
Also, DSS staff may help students obtain services in the community by providing information and, in some cases, introductions to community resources.
The DSS office will not notify instructors of an absence unless the absence will be for one or more weeks and is caused by the student's disabling condition. If the student wants DSS to notify their instructors, s/he should call the DSS Program Assistant. If a student is unable to attend classes as a result of a non-disability related problem, the DSS office will not notify instructors of the absence. This is the responsibility of the student. In either case, students may be required to present medical verification of illness from their physicians.
Students receiving special services (interpreters, mobility assistance, testing accommodations, etc.) must notify the DSS service provider of their absence prior to the time these special services are scheduled to be delivered. Three (3) failures to do so may result in termination of the service. For students' convenience, messages may be left at 925-969-2182, or Sorenson VRS at 969-270-1660 24 hours per day and on weekends.
The DSS office provides duplication services only for the enlargement of tests, handouts and classroom notes, to students with low vision disabilities. There is a CCTV print enlarger located in the High Tech Center in the Student Service Center 250 and in the Library to read textbooks and other resource materials.
The telephones and Teledigital Devices (TDD) in the DSS offices are for official use only. Student usage is limited to emergencies.
DSS does not have money available to grant or loan to students. Students may apply for Financial Aid to assist with purchases of books, supplies and other educational necessities. There are specific guidelines and deadlines for applying for financial assistance. Please go to the Financial Aid office for further information.
Students may qualify for funds from the Department of Rehabilitation or the Extended Opportunity Program and Services (EOPS) for low income and educationally disadvantaged students. The Scholarship Office grants scholarships for qualified continuing and transferring students. They also help students search for scholarships from other sources.
The college has an ongoing process for evaluating architectural barriers and recommending changes. The goal of significantly improving campus accessibility was achieved in the Spring '96, and is considered to be the first of three or four phases of a campus wide Architectural Barrier Removal (ABR) Project designed to maximize accessibility to our campus.
If students encounter difficulties with access, please inform DSS staff and steps will be taken to address the problem.
Some students have special needs that may require emergency or first aid response. This may include students who have seizures, students with certain psychiatric disabilities, students with cardiac disabilities, to name a few. It is important that you inform the DSS Counselor of an emergency contact person, including their day time phone number, in the event that you require medical attention or transport to your home or medical facility. It may also be wise to provide this same information to campus police services.
In the event of a fire, earthquake or other incident requiring a campus-wide response, Diablo Valley College will institute its emergency evacuation plan that includes evacuation of students and employees with disabilities. It is important that you are familiar with your needs in an emergency. Be familiar with alarm signals, establish a buddy system for each class, and advise your instructor or classmate how to assist you in the event of an emergency.
Students involved in programs that have a clinical component are entitled to reasonable accommodation in the clinical setting as well as the academic setting. If a student with a disability is requesting a clinical accommodation, the clinical faculty and DSS faculty and/or DSS manager will collaboratively determine on an individual basis, whether or not the requested accommodations can be made in a reasonable manner.