Disability Information Student Handbook

Special Education Is Now Disability Support Programs & Services

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Section Two: Using Disability Services and Accommodations

Concerns and Complaints

The First Approach To Resolving Problems

In spite of the best efforts of everyone involved, a problem may arise during your period of attendance at De Anza College.  There are various avenues of recourse for students, including internal college processes and external options, both informal and formal, to address complaints and disagreements.

However, using good human relations principles, communication skills and problem-solving techniques, parties can often resolve disputes without having to initiate a college or outside complaint procedure.  

Experience has shown that  misunderstandings or miscommunications can create problems that may then escalate. Dealing openly and calmly with an issue as soon as possible gives everyone a chance to clarify and resolve the problem. If this approach does not work, students have at their disposal all official procedures, as outlined later in this section.

Staff members in the disability programs at De Anza are receptive to hearing student concerns and helping to mediate in the belief that by doing so issues may be promptly resolved and energies  focused back on educational objectives.  Students are encouraged to contact their counselor or advisor for this assistance.  However, students may initiate at any point, as appropriate, an official College Grievance or the District Procedure to Resolve Complaints Regarding Harassment and Discrimination Procedure, or contact the Office for Civil Right/San Francisco .  See the Dish section, Student Complaints & Resolution Process, for more information and contacts.

The College endorses making a good faith, collaborative effort to resolve differences, if possible.  Here are some suggestions to do so.

A Problem Solving Strategy

  1. Speak first to the person involved. Present your concern.  Explore any potential alternative solutions. If you need help to formulate an approach, see your counselor/advisor.
  2.  If you cannot reach a mutually satisfactory resolution, use proper channels by talking first to the administrator directly responsible (see “Who to Contact for Assistance” below).
    • With this approach, your concern can then be raised to a higher level manager or administrator which may then result in a satisfactory outcome.
    • If you are unsure about who to see or how to proceed, meet with your counselor/advisor.
  3. If the matter is not resolved after employing these steps, you will be advised about how to proceed through an official complaint process, as described in the next Dish section,  Student Complaints and Resolution Processes.

Who to Contact for Assistance

  •  If your issue involves an instructor or college staff member, contact the appropriate manager who will be one of the following:
    • Supervisor of that college program
    • Department chair of the academic area or if none, Dean of the Division
  • If your concern regards a Disability Support Programs and Services Division program policy or action or involves a staff member, instructor or counselor/advisor:
    • Contact the Executive Head of the program first.
    • Then, if the issue remains unresolved. contact the DSPS Division Coordinator or Dean.


DISH Building:

Last Updated: 10/13/10