Maryville University: Personal Care Assistant (PCA) Policy

Maryville University (the “University”) is committed to providing equal educational access for all of its students by ensuring that students with disabilities receive reasonable accommodations that support effective participation in all aspects of the educational experience.

The University strives to remove barriers for individuals with disabilities in accordance with Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the Americans with Disabilities Act Amendments Act (ADAAA) of 2008.

Personal Care Assistants (“PCAs”) may be required to address the personal needs of the student thus allowing him/her to participate in University activities. PCA is defined as a person who provides personal care/assistance (chronic or temporary) to a student with a disability or other health care needs with activities of daily living including nursing services or assistance with normal life functions. PCA services may facilitate higher levels of independent access and participation in University programs, services, and activities. The services of a PCA can have an important role in an individual’s quality of life. The well thought out selection of the right Agency/individual and ongoing effective communication with the PCA is critical for a successful experience. Students who require PCA services must make arrangements to provide for his/her own PCA and must follow the policies, procedures and guidelines as listed below.

I. Responsibility of the University
It is the responsibility of University faculty, staff, and administration to provide the academic or program access accommodations for a student with severe physical impairments. Reasonable accommodations will be provided to address the student’s disability within the classrooms and service areas of the University. Accommodations are determined through the Disability Support and Success office.

It is not the responsibility of the University to provide services to meet the personal needs of the student, which may include but is not limited to transfer from a vehicle to a wheelchair, transportation to or from the University facilities, administering medication, addressing toilet, bathing, feeding or dressing needs, and errands.

II. Responsibility of the Student
It is the student’s responsibility to hire his/her own PCA and to secure funding for these services. It is the student’s responsibility to have the PCA registered at the Disability Support and Success office and in place prior to any University-related activities. A student’s failure to do so could result in removal from campus until a PCA is secured. The University cannot be responsible for providing PCA services on an interim basis until the student secures a PCA. The Director of Disability Support and Success does not participate in the PCA interviewing or hiring process.

The student shall contact the Director of Disability Support and Success prior to attending the University to discuss reasonable accommodations, including the role of the PCA on campus. A meeting should occur with the Director of Disability Support and Success during each semester that the student is enrolled, and it is the responsibility of the student to schedule the meeting(s).

If a PCA is required, the student shall secure a PCA and Relief PCA(s) prior to attending the University and to have a plan for when the primary PCA(s) is not available. Students must ensure that PCA(s) meets with the Director of Disability Support and Success and signs an Agreement/Expectations form for Personal Care Assistants prior to providing service on campus.

The student shall arrange for someone to provide transportation from one class to another, if necessary. If exceptions to current policies and procedures are needed for transportation and/or parking, these exceptions must be discussed and approved in advance with the Director of Disability Support and Success, as well as the appropriate persons of the Maryville University Public Safety Department.

The student shall abide by this policy and ensure, to the best of his/her ability that his/her PCA will also do so. The student shall ensure that the PCA responsibly uses any access to University facilities, equipment, resources, and network activities.

Please note that the University strongly recommends that in order for a student who needs a PCA to have a college experience that is closest to the Mission of the University, the student’s PCA should not be a family member, a friend, another student, or of the opposite sex.

III. Responsibility of the PCA
The PCA shall undergo a background check via the Human Resources office, at the expense of the student or the PCA. The PCA shall also undergo Title IX training via the University’s Title IX Coordinator.

The PCA shall assist in the completion of homework, if applicable. However, no PCA may provide intellectual content assistance or tutoring. The student who accepts the intellectual assistance of a PCA may be considered in violation of the University Academic Integrity Policy.

The PCA shall refrain from participating in or disrupting classes. Generally, unless the student has a documented need for the PCA to be in the classroom with the student, the PCA should remain outside of the classroom. The specific determinations in this area are made on an individualized and class-by-class basis in consultation with the Director of Disability Support and Success and, when appropriate, with the faculty member.

PCA(s) are required to follow all University rules, regulations, policies, and procedures. PCA(s) found in violation of any of these rules, regulations, and/or procedures, including this policy will be asked to leave campus immediately, regardless of the contractual arrangement they have with the student.

IV. Use of PCA(s) in University Residences
To live in University housing, students with a disability who require the service of a PCA to assist with activities of daily living must secure these services FOUR (4) WEEKS before the start of classes. Students shall follow these guidelines to arrange PCA services.

  1. Check the box on the “Housing Application” noting that you require a medical accommodation. Submit the completed Housing Application to the Office of Residential Life.
  2. Submit a copy of Medical Documentation from a physician or medical professional to verify these arrangements are necessary to accommodate a student’s current medical condition. Medical Documentation should be submitted by fax to the Disability Support and Success Office at 314.529.9174.
  3. Register the PCA with the Disability Support and Success office by submitting a copy of the contractual agreement the student has executed or entered into with the PCA or agency employing the PCA. This documentation could cover a specific person, or an agency providing services if such services are to be provided by more than one person. The contractual agreement must identify the nature of the services required by the student and stipulate that the same will in fact be provided by the PCA.
  4. Submit a copy of their PCA(s) criminal background check(s) and drug screening results.
  5. Submit the name and telephone number of their PCA(s) to the Disability Support and Success office and Maryville University Public Safety Department.
  6. Contact the Title IX Coordinator at and submit a request to complete the Title IX Training. This request and training must be completed within (2) weeks of being on campus.
  7. Should students fail to properly register PCA(s) with the Disability Support and Success office; PCA(s) will be denied entry into all University facilities until appropriate documentation is received.
  8. Students are responsible for providing a copy of the PCA policy to their PCA(s).

V. Appeal Procedures

  1. Process
    If a student’s PCA is asked to leave campus for a violation of any University rules, regulations, and/or procedures, including the PCA policy, the student receiving services may file an appeal and request a review of the alleged violation in accordance with the following procedures.Appeals under the PCA policy must be filed with the Vice President for Academic Affairs within 10 University business days from the date of the alleged violation. The appeal must be in writing and contain the following: (1) name of the student; (2) name of the PCA(s); (3) a statement of the determination of the violation; (4) a detailed statement of the basis for the appeal including the specific facts, circumstances, and argument in support of it; and (5) requested action, if any.An investigation conducted by appropriately trained University personnel shall follow the filing of an appeal. The investigation shall be informal but prompt and thorough, and it should afford all interested persons and their representatives, if any, an opportunity to submit evidence relevant to the appeal.
  2. Resolution
    A written determination on the appeal shall be issued by the Vice President for Academic Affairs within 10 University business days of the conclusion of the investigation. The decision of the Vice President for Academic Affairs is final. The Vice President for Academic Affairs shall issue a written statement of the resolution of the appeal, including any changes made to the previous determination. The written statement shall be provided to the student within 5 University business days of reaching the resolution.

    September 2017

    Maryville University – Student Accessibility and Support Services Personal Care Assistant for Students with Disabilities Agreement/Expectations