Policy Statement and Assurances of Nondiscrimination
The Abby Kelley Foster Charter Public School (AKFCS) hereby affirms its commitment to ensuring that people with disabilities have an opportunity equal to that of their non-disabled peers to participate in the school’s programs, benefits, and services, including those delivered through electronic and information technology, except where doing so would impose an undue burden or create a fundamental alteration. Our benchmarks for measuring accessibility are set forth below.
When rendering online content accessible requires an undue burden upon AKFCS or results in a fundamental alteration of content, AKFCS will provide equally effective alternative access and ensure that, to the maximum extent possible, individuals with disabilities receive the same benefits or service as their nondisabled peers. In doing so, AKFCS will endeavor to afford persons with disabilities an equal opportunity to obtain the same result, to gain the same benefit, or to reach the same level of achievement, in the most integrated setting appropriate to the
A. Website Accessibility Compliance Standards
AKFCS is committed to compliance with the provisions of Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (29 U.S.C. §794) and its implementing regulations at 34 C.F.R. §104 et seq., as well as Title II of the ADA Amendments Act, so that students, prospective students, employees and visitors with disabilities are able to access the same information, engage in the same interactions, and enjoy the same benefits and services within the same timeframe as their
non-disabled peers, with substantially equivalent ease of use. AKFCS is committed to ensuring that students, prospective students, employees, and visitors with disabilities are not excluded from participation in, denied the benefits of, or otherwise subjected to discrimination in any of AKFCS’s programs, services, and activities, including those delivered online. This commitment to accessibility extends to any content and functionality provided or developed by third parties.
To these ends, AKFCS adheres to nationally recognized standards for website accessibility, including the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0 Level AA and the Web Accessibility Initiative Accessible Rich Internet Applications Suite (WAI-ARIA) for web content (AKFCS reserves the right to adhere to a different but comparable standard or combination of standards to ensure equivalent website accessibility). AKFCS is committed to
staying apprised of any changes in the applicable standards, laws, and/or regulations, and will conform its policies and procedures to comply with any such changes.
Adherence to these nationally recognized standards is one way that AKFCS ensures compliance with its underlying legal obligations to ensure that people with disabilities are able to acquire the same information, engage in the same interactions, and enjoy the same benefits and services within the same timeframe as their non-disabled peers, with substantially equivalent ease-of-use; that they are not excluded from participation in, denied the benefits of, or otherwise subjected to discrimination in any of the programs, services, and activities delivered online by AKFCS, as required by §504 and Title II and their implementing regulations; and that they receive effective communication of AKFCS’s programs, services, and activities delivered online.
B. Website Accessibility Coordinator and Ongoing Professional Development
As part of its commitment to accessibility, AKFCS has designated a Website Accessibly Coordinator, who has been granted the authority and resources to oversee and coordinate the implementation of AKFCS’s Website Accessibility Policy. AKFCS’s Website Accessibility Coordinator is:
Director of Information Technology and Website Accessibility Coordinator
Abby Kelley Foster Charter Public School
10 New Bond Street
Worcester, MA 01606
Together with other staff who are responsible for creating or disseminating online content, the Website Accessibility Coordinator will undertake annual professional development training on the Website Accessibility Policy generally, as well as staff’s roles and responsibilities in ensuring the accessibility of online content. The training will be developed and facilitated, in whole or in part, by an individual with sufficient knowledge, skill, and experience to understand and effectuate the technical standards utilized by AKFCS.
C. Accessibility Complaints, Concerns, or Comments
Students, prospective students, employees and visitors with and without disabilities are encouraged to report concerns or complaints regarding AKFCS’s compliance with its accessibility standards as soon as practicable after such concerns are identified.
Concerns, complaints, and/or comments about website accessibility and/or AKFCS’s compliance with this Policy may be registered formally or informally through AKFCS’s Web Accessibility Coordinator, Mr. Calabresi. In the event you have difficulty accessing any element of the website and/or wish to file a complaint, or report a concern or comment about web accessibility, please let us know by filling out this form. You may also file a formal complaint through AKFCS’s Section 504 and/or Title II procedures by visiting our Accessibility Complaint page.
Complaints, concerns, and comments will be routed to the Website Accessibility Coordinator. The Website Accessibility Coordinator will contact the complainant within ten (10) business days of receiving the complaint.
If AKFCS cannot remedy the accessibility problem, it will endeavor to provide the information by equally effective alternate access, unless such equally effective alternate access fundamentally alters the material(s), and/or causes an undue financial or administrative burden.
The Website Accessibility Coordinator will record each complaint, concern, and comment received, and documentation of any associated correspondence and/or resolution will be maintained by the Website Accessibility Coordinator for a period of one year.
D. Accessibility Audit
AKFCS will conduct annual audits to ensure that its website and online content is accessible as measured against the technical standards referenced in this Policy. If AKFCS identifies any deficiencies in the accessibility of its website and/or online content, these deficiencies will be remediated promptly, within a reasonable period of time.
E. Fundamental Alteration or Undue Burden
AKFCS, in providing equally effective alternate access, shall take any necessary actions that do not result in a fundamental alteration or undue burden, but nevertheless ensure that, to the maximum extent possible, individuals with disabilities receive the same benefits and services as their nondisabled peers.
In those circumstances where AKFCS’s Web Accessibility Coordinator believes that the proposed action would fundamentally alter the service, program, or activity or would result in an undue burden, AKFCS must demonstrate that compliance would result in such fundamental alteration or undue burden. The final decision concerning whether compliance would result in a fundamental alteration or undue burden will be made by the Superintendent, and/or his or her designee, after consultation with the Website Accessibility Coordinator and consideration of all resources available for use in the funding and operation of the service, program or activity. Any such decision will be supported with a written statement of the reasons for the decision.
If an action aimed at creating accessibility would result in a fundamental alteration or undue burden, AKFCS will undertake any other action that would not result in such an alteration or burden but would nevertheless ensure that, to the maximum extent possible, individuals with
disabilities receive the benefits and services provided by AKFCS.