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High School vs. College

Welcome to Walters State Community College and congratulations on the start of your college career! You will experience a variety of differences in the college setting compared to your high school experience. Below are comparisons important to students with disabilities.

High School

  • Education is an entitlement.
  • Accommodations are governed by Individuals with Disabilities Act: IDEA and Section 504, Rehabilitation Act of 1973.
  • IDEA is focused on success.
  • Students needing services are identified by the school. The school can and most often initiates the process of eligibility and service provision.
  • School systems provide evaluations for determining eligibility at no cost to the student.
  • Accommodations are outlined in and Individualized Education Plan (IEP) or Section 504 plan.
  • Teachers take responsibility for implementing the Individualized Education Plan (IEP).
  • High schools can modify academic requirements such as required curriculum and grading.
  • Parents have access to student records and often participate in the accommodation process.

College

  • Education is a choice.
  • Accommodations are governed by Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, Title 11: ADA and Section 504, Rehabilitation Act of 1973.
  • ADA is focused on access. Success is not guaranteed.
  • Students must request accommodations through the Office of Disability Services. The student must initiate the process of obtaining accommodations.
  • Documenting a disability is up to the student and is at their own expense. Walters State does not provide evaluations.
  • At Walters State, accommodations are outlined in an Educational Support Plan (ESP).
  • Students are responsible for seeing that the Educational Support Plan (ESP) is implemented.
  • Colleges are not required to alter any essential course requirements or adjust assignment deadlines.
  • Parents do not have access to student records. Disability Services staff do not communicate with parents about the student without the student being present or giving written consent.