1. A student must complete the Religious Accommodation Form and turn it to his/her instructor(s) prior to the consensus date (10% point) for the class. A student who submits the Form after the census date must show good cause for the late submission and the late submission itself may be taken into account in determining whether the student has a religious practice or belief requiring accommodation and whether granting the request would create undue hardship.
2. The instructor and the student should discuss what a reasonable accommodation should include in all given cases. At a minimum, reasonable accommodations must provide that the student who is absent on days of examinations or class assignments due to a religious observance will have an opportunity to make up the work, without penalty, unless granting the make-up opportunity would create undue hardship.
3. If the instructor and student agree upon a reasonable accommodation, the accommodation is then documented and shall be implemented.
4. If the instructor denies the student request for a reasonable accommodation, or only agrees to provide an accommodation that is unsatisfactory to the student, the student and the instructor will meet with the Department Chair. If the parties cannot reach a consensus, the student may file a written grievance directly to the Vice President for Academic Affairs (“Vice President”) within five calendar days after the meeting with the Department Chair. The Vice President shall meet with the student, instructor and Department Chair and hear from all parties regarding the student’s requested accommodations and make a written determination regarding the student’s request. The student may appeal the Vice President’s decision to the President without five (5) calendar days of receipt of the Vice President’s written determination. The President will conduct an “on the record” review and, at the President’s discretion, hear from the parties. The President will render a final decision. Where a timely request is made by the student but denied by the instructor, the grievance process shall be expedited as much as reasonably possible to ensure that a student pursuing a religious accommodation is not unduly disadvantaged by the passage of time.
5. Excused absences from classes or examinations for religious observances will not be counted against any mandatory attendance requirements, but they do not relieve students from responsibility for any part of the course work required during the period of absence. The instructor may appropriately respond if the student fails to satisfactorily complete any alternative assignment or examination.
Adopted: January 8, 2020