FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE|
TUESDAY, FEBRUARY 26, 2002
TDD (202) 514-1888
LAW SCHOOL ADMISSION COUNCIL SETTLES ADA
TESTING DISCRIMINATION LAWSUIT WITH DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE
WASHINGTON, D.C. – The Law School Admission Council (LSAC), the agency that administers the Law School Admission Test (LSAT), has agreed to revise its policies on test accommodations for persons with physical disabilities under a settlement agreement reached with the Department of Justice. The agreement was submitted to the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania for approval today.
The Department of Justice filed a lawsuit in 1999 alleging that the LSAC violated the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) when it failed to provide reasonable test accommodations to four persons with physical disabilities to take the LSAT, a standardized test administered to those seeking admission to law school. Some of the applicants who have cerebral palsy and requested extra time to complete the examination because of the nature of their physical disabilities were asked by LSAC to undergo testing for learning disabilities.
Under the terms of the settlement, the LSAC will, among other things:
"This agreement opens the door for people with disabilities interested in pursuing the study of law," said Ralph F. Boyd, Jr., Assistant Attorney General for Civil Rights. "Making reasonable accommodations for people with disabilities ensures that testing procedures are fair for all participants in the law school application process."
The agreement does not address LSAC's handling of requests of accommodations from persons with learning disabilities, attention deficit hyperactive disorder (ADHD), psychological or psychiatric impairments, or other non-physical impairments. The Department will monitor LSAC's compliance of the agreement for five years.
Title III of the ADA, which was passed by Congress in 1990, prohibits discrimination on the basis of disability by private entities and specifically requires that private testing entities offer examinations in a manner that is accessible to people with disabilities.
People interested in finding out more about the ADA can call the toll free ADA Information Line at (800) 514-0301 or (800) 514-0383 (TDD), or access the ADA home page at: http://www.usdoj.gov/crt/ada/adahom1.htm.