Faculty Responsibility for Equitable, Accessible Learning Environments

Resolution Number
Assigned to
Online Education Committee
General Concerns
Status Report

Fall 2022: The update to the paper is currently being drafted by the Online Ed. Committee. This will be presented to the body at the 2023 Spring Plenary Session. 

Whereas, Accessibility in the digital learning environment is an essential part of an equitable learning environment, and students deserve to have access to digital learning materials and environments without revealing their disability status as provisioned by Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act;
Whereas, Accessibility in the digital learning environment—or compliance with Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act—is required for all government-funded institutions, including the California Community Colleges, and the California Community Colleges’ Chancellor’s Office  Information and Communication Technology and Instructional Material Accessibility Standard [1] (2020) says that “ensuring equal access to equally effective instructional materials and ICT [information communication technology] is the responsibility of all California Community College administrators, faculty, and staff”; and

Whereas, Accessibility is an academic and professional matter per Title 5 §53200, and faculty should have and maintain full freedom of and purview over their instructional materials and digital learning environments while fulfilling their obligation as educators to provide accessible learning environments as required legally and as a tool for closing equity gaps;
Resolved, That the Academic Senate for California Community Colleges urge local academic senates to advocate for making accessibility a campus-wide priority because it relates to faculty agency over equitable student access in all teaching and learning environments;

Resolved, That the Academic Senate for California Community Colleges update its paper Ensuring Effective Online Programs: A Faculty Perspective by Fall 2023 to include clarification of the differences between accommodations  (as referenced in Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act) and accessibility (as referenced in Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act), as these definitions relate to faculty fulfilling their responsibility as educators in all modalities, and also develop other resources as appropriate; and
Resolved, That the Academic Senate for California Community Colleges work with the California Community Colleges Chancellor’s Office and other stakeholders to guide the development of the local infrastructure necessary to support faculty with professional learning, tools, and expert support in the creation of fully accessible learning environments.


1. https://drive.google.com/file/d/1Bss1F09dH4yrc6cCid6zNK0HfLuXV5vp/view