Written by Chris Fry, Solicitor
We’re getting into exam season. I remember those days well…… a relentless cycle of classes, one to ones, home learning and a super reliance on the ‘nut shells guides’. The pressure of expectation and recognition that outcomes will have life changing effects.
An ability to compete on a level playing field and to have the same opportunity to succeed is so important, especially now when the cost of living is so high and the gap between rich and poor is becoming greater.
When I went to University the Disability Discrimination Act 1995 had only just been introduced. I don’t remember many class mates asking for or receiving reasonable adjustments and I don’t think I saw a wheelchair on campus.
Times are different now. We have definitely made progress in seeing more accessible sites, and the current generation of students understand that they have legal rights to access the service they are paying for, with the benefit of reasonable adjustments that level the playing field.
In my experience, Higher Education providers and Universities have become very effective at completing initial needs assessments and setting out blue prints for adjustments necessary to provide for an inclusive and accessible opportunity. But, I am still receiving requests for help from students coming up to exams who feel let down, isolated and abandoned by organisations that have failed to implement those assessments in practice.
If you are studying for an exam where you feel that failures to make reasonable adjustments in teaching or in exams are likely to damage your grades, then act now! With my help we can obtain reasonable adjustments and potentially re-sits and compensation which can include awards for breach of contract and delayed employment opportunities.
I have a track record in resolving these disputes quickly and often by way of mediation which serves to fix problems and rebuild relationships. Taking effective legal advice before crisis point is key, and will certainly reduce exam stress.