Tuesday, October 2, 2007

News: The University of North Carolina Is Listening

The University of North Carolina Tomorrow Commission will be hosting a series of community listening forums to gather information on how the university system can address the state’s changing educational needs.

For students with disabilities, one major change the University of North Carolina system can make is to improve accessibility on all sixteen campuses. These listening forums coincide with Disability History and Awareness month, so let’s take advantage of this opportunity and express the difficulties we experience on college campuses.

Students attending our state’s universities have experienced difficulties receiving student support services, a lack of alternative formats for class materials and a shortage of knowledgeable interpreters. They must navigate the physical barriers that still remain on our campuses. These include missing curb cuts, lack of readily accessible parking, inaccessible classrooms, and non-existent accessible restrooms. The barriers to a quality education run the gamut for students with disabilities.

These barriers contribute to an increased drop out rate among students with disabilities. The drop out rate from college for the general population is 40%. The drop out rate from college for a student with hearing loss is 70%.

During this legislative session, the House Committee on Education gave a favorable report to House Bill 1641: Study Disabled Access to UNC Facilities. HB 1641 made it into the omnibus study bill, which was not passed by the Senate. The Arc of North Carolina is working to encourage legislators to study access for students with disabilities at the UNC system during this break legislative break.

We encourage you to attend these forums and inform the University that they need to fulfill their responsibility to students with disabilities

Here is the list of forums:

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

Charlotte-Mecklenburg Government Center
Room 267

Metro Convention Center

Thursday, October 4, 2007
Highsmith Union-Alumni Hall

Southwestern Community College

Monday October 8, 2007
Gateway University Research Park Gymnasium
Millenium Campus

Wednesday, October 10,2007
North Carolina State University
McKimmon Center
Room 2C

Need addition information? Contact Tony Carvano 962-4231

Read the bill:

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