Welcome to Disability Support Services! 

Our Commitment

The Disability Support Services office at Walla Walla Community College is committed to ensuring that students with disabilities have equal access to all aspects of campus life. We facilitate accommodations, training and advocacy work to help foster students’ independence, ensure recognition of their strengths, as well as their disability challenges. No student shall, on the basis of their disability, be excluded from their participation in, be denied the benefits of, or otherwise be subjected to discrimination under any college program or activity. 

Additionally, DSS maintains compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, and State of Washington Laws of 1994, Chapter 105. 

Contact Us!

Walla Walla Campus

Kristen Duede, LICSW
Disability Support Services Coordinator
Phone: (509)527-4543
TTY: (509)527-4412
Email: [email protected]
Schedule an Appointment Online

Clarkston Campus

Heather Markwalter
Student Affairs Coordinator/Retention Specialist
Phone: (509) 758-1721
TTY: (509) 527-4412
Email: [email protected]

More Info!

Students who are interested in disability accommodations should visit our Getting Started with DSS page for a detailed overview on how to become registered with DSS and receive accommodations. To initiate the process please fill out the Disability Accommodation Request Form.

Student Responsibilities
  • Self-identify as having a disability and complete the DSS request process.
  • Provide timely notice and documentation of the nature and extent of their disability and the services you are requesting. Lack of notice my delay the availability of some accommodations.
  • Promptly notify DSS of any problems encountered in receiving the agreed upon accommodation.
  • Maintain satisfactory academic progress.
What services may be provided?

Accommodations are individually determined through a collaborative process and based on your unique needs, program of study and course requirements.

Disability Support Services supports student enrolled in WWCC through the Running Start Program.

  • Please note that IEP/504 Accommodations do not automatically transfer over to WWCC.
  • To obtain accommodations for WWCC courses you must follow our process to request accommodations.
  • College Accommodations are different from High School Modifications and Accommodations. College students with disabilities are still required to meet all of the course objectives and standards set by the instructor. Higher Ed accommodation are to remove barriers to access. They do not modify or adjust curriculum.
  • DSS is only able to speak with the enrolled student concerning their application or accommodations unless a release of educational records form is on file with the college, no matter their age.

Colleges and universities are covered under the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) of 1990. In 1994, Washington State passed legislation adding new sections to 28B.10 RCW that expresses the same intent as Section 504 and the ADA.
The Rehabilitation Act 

Title V of The Rehabilitation Act of 1973 is generally regarded as the first civil rights legislation for people with disabilities on the national level.
Section 504 of the Act prohibits discrimination on the basis of disability in any program or activity offered by an entity or institution receiving federal funds. Since 1977, all institutions receiving federal funding have been required to provide appropriate reasonable accommodations for people with disabilities.

Section 504 states: No otherwise qualified person with a disability in the United States … shall, solely on the basis of disability, be denied access to, or the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any program or activity provided by any institution receiving federal financial assistance.

Definition of a Disability: Section 504 defines a person with a disability as “… someone with a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities.”

The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) 

The ADA is a federal civil rights statute designed to remove barriers which prevent qualified individuals with disabilities from enjoying the same opportunities that are available to persons without disabilities.
Colleges are covered in many ways under the ADA. Employment is addressed by Title 1, accessibility provided by public and private entities Titles 11 and 111, and miscellaneous items are covered under Title V.

Definition of a person with a disability: Under the ADA, a person with a disability is someone with, a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities. A person is considered to be a person with a disability under the law if he/she has the disability, has a record of the disability, or is regarded as having the disability.

Under both Section 504 and the ADA, the term “auxiliary aids and services” include: qualified interpreters, note takers, transcription services, written materials, telephone handset amplifiers, qualified readers, taped text, Braille materials, acquisition or modification of equipment or devices, or other similar services and actions.

Washington State Law 

Under Washington State Law (28B. 10 RCW), “… institutions of higher education are obligated to provide services to students with disabilities.” The definition of disability follows the federal guidelines. “Reasonable accommodations” include certain “core services” which are outlined in the statute. It also establishes a grievance procedure for students to follow if they believe discrimination has taken place.

Confidentiality and Release of Educational Records

The Office of Disability Support Services (DSS) is committed to ensuring that all information and communication pertaining to a student’s disability is maintained as confidential as required or permitted by law.

The following guidelines about the treatment of such information have been adopted by DSS and will be shared with students. These guidelines incorporate relevant state and federal regulations.

No one will have immediate access to student files stored in the DSS office except appropriate staff. Any information regarding a disability is considered confidential and will be shared only with others within the college who have a legitimate educational interest.

This information is protected by the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA). See: Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act

Sensitive information in the DSS student files will not be released except in accordance with federal and state laws.

A student’s file may be released pursuant to a court order or subpoena.

If a student wishes to have information about a disability shared with others, the student must provide written authorization to the Coordinator of DSS to release the information. Before giving such authorization, the student should understand the purpose of the release and to whom the information is being released. The student should also understand that there may be occasions when the Coordinator will share information regarding a student’s disability at his/her discretion if circumstances necessitate the sharing of information and the Coordinator has determined that there is an appropriate legitimate educational interest involved.

A student has the right to review his/her own file.

Records Retention Policy

Student records are retained in locked files for six years. When the last point of contact has exceeded six years, the file is placed in the confidential shred container. The FERPA law applies to all student records and communications. Refer to CT0401.002