Returning to Campus, Post-COVID: A Two-Part Summer Panel Discussion Webinar Series

The AHEAD online Community has been full of robust conversations about the implications for students with disabilities of the return to in-person instruction that most schools are contemplating will occur this summer and fall. It is agreed that there is no one-size-fits-all model for making determinations about accommodations in these uncharted waters—every school will need to make decisions that best suit its teaching, students, and values. However, there is a clear need for space to talk through all the implications to provide various perspectives and options, identify potentially problematic approaches, and offer guidance for schools to consider what should be their own best practice.

AHEAD convened two separate panels early this summer to come together to talk through how campuses may approach the thorny questions that returning to campus means for those with disabilities. Neither panel presented “Here is how your school should do this.” Instead, panelists with differing backgrounds and approaches offer multiple perspectives on the considerations and processes schools might apply to reach the conclusion that is the best fit for them. 

These webinars were hosted in Zoom and include captioning with the recordings.

If you purchased access to the live webinars in this series when they were originally presented, you can still access the webinar resources and recording links after signing into your eLearning account

Please contact if you have any additional questions.

Webinar Recordings: Returning to Campus, Post-COVID

Member Pricing (Requires Sign-In*)

  • Both webinars: $99.00.  
  • Individual webinars: $59.00 each
Non Member Pricing
  • Both webinars: $179.00. 
  • Individual webinars for $99.00 each 

Part 1: Who Makes the Big Decisions and What Should They Consider?

Moderator:   Jamie Axelrod, Northern Arizona University

Panelists:  Paul Grossman, OCR Chief Regional Attorney, Retired; Jane Jarrow, Disability Access Info and Support (DAIS); Scott Lissner, Ohio State University; Michael Masinter, Shepard Broad College of Law, Nova Southeastern University               

When considering requests for remote participation and other accommodations that might fundamentally alter the educational program in some way, a school must first determine who will be part of the decision-making and what factors will receive primary consideration, well before reaching any reasoned conclusions. This panel addressed questions such as: How can schools determine whether, and which, classes must be taught in-person and which students, if any, might receive a waiver from such requirements? What campus entities should be involved in those discussions? What role does the disability office have? Are these considerations different now than they were pre-pandemic, and if so, how? This panel will talked through the legal obligations and the philosophical approaches that schools should be weighing when making these “big picture” decisions.

Part 2: Working with Students on COVID Accommodations

Moderator:   Jamie Axelrod, Northern Arizona University

Panelists:  Adam Crawford, Ohio State University; Enjie Hall, University of Toledo; Ian Kunkes, Virginia Commonwealth University

This panel examined the logistics of creating COVID-related accommodations. Representatives from the disability offices of several schools offer their perspectives on issues such as: What medical documentation may be required to support COVID accommodation requests? Could there be a separate form/process for COVID requests, apart from other disability requests? How might requests for exemptions to vaccine and mask policies be handled? Are housing accommodations for COVID-related reasons ever warranted? And any other accommodation issues and questions you face.

The processes and procedures underlying how disability offices should handle these decisions were discussed, with the inherent assumption that in many cases there is no one right decision: different conclusions may be reached by different schools depending on particular circumstances. The important part is that the proper process was followed to get there! 


Jamie Axelrod
Jamie Axelrod, M.S. is the Director of Disability Resources at Northern Arizona University and Past-President of AHEAD. Jamie presents regularly on topics related to disability access and higher education, having expertise in disability law and policy, communication and information technology (ICT) access, and the reasonable accommodation process. Jamie is a regular and well-respected contributor to professional listservs, including AHEAD’s discussion boards, and is a go-to consultant for complex issues. He has worked for the University of Wisconsin-Madison’s athletic department, as a mental health therapist, and for Protection and Advocacy Systems, Inc., a disability rights advocacy law firm where he served as an advocate for individuals with disabilities who were claiming that their civil rights had been violated. Jamie has served as co-chair of Northern Arizona University’s Commission on Disability Access and Design and on AHEAD’s Board of Directors.

Adam Crawford
Adam Crawford is an Assistant Director at Student Life Disability Services at The Ohio State University. Adam has 8 years of experience in the disability resources field. He received his Bachelor’s in Sociology and his Master’s in Student Affairs in Higher Education from Missouri State University. Adam currently serves as the President-Elect for Ohio AHEAD.

Paul Grossman
Paul Grossman, J.D. served as a civil rights attorney for the U.S. Department of Education, Office for Civil Rights (OCR), serving as its Chief Regional Attorney in San Francisco for 30 years. He is currently an Adjunct Professor of Disability Law at Hasting College of Law, University of California, and a member of the AHEAD Board of Directors, the Public Policy Committee of the Association for Children and Adults with AD/HD (CHADD), and the Disability Rights Advocates (DRA) Expert Advisory Board. Dr. Grossman has worked on every type of education discrimination and investigated, written decisions, and settled hundreds of disability discrimination cases, often developing new approaches to protecting students with disabilities. He is the coauthor of The Law of Disability Discrimination (8th Edition) and its companion publication, Law of Disability Discrimination Handbook: Statues and Regulatory Guidance.

Enjie Hall

Enjie Hall, M.R.C. is the Director of Campus Accessibility and Student Disability Services at the University of Toledo in Ohio, the University’s ADA Compliance Officer, and and a Director At-Large on AHEAD’s Board of Directors. Enjie previously worked at The Ohio State University in the Student Life Office for Disability Services and is a licensed professional counselor. She has presented at local, state, and national conferences on a variety of topics relating to services for disabled students, moving beyond compliance to full inclusion, and assistive technology.


Jane Jarrow
Jane E. Jarrow, Ph.D., has been a pioneer in the field of disability services in higher education for more than 40 years. She was the first Executive Director of the Association on Higher Education and Disability (AHEAD), serving in that capacity for 15 years before becoming a private consultant as the President of Disability Access Information and Support (DAIS). In that role, Jane has visited hundreds of campuses for site visits and presentations, presented and written extensively on topics of interest to our field, and taught online professional development classes critical to the knowledge base and understanding of disability service providers throughout the United States and Canada.

Ian Kunkes
Ian Kunkes, M.S., is the Director of Student Accessibility and Educational Opportunity and a co-founder and chair of the Transforming Accessibility Initiative at Virginia Commonwealth University. Over a 15-year career supporting disabled students, Ian has worked in a range of educational settings, including higher ed, public and private secondary and post-secondary schools, and high-stakes educational testing. He has been a featured speaker at national and regional AHEAD events and the Post-Secondary Training Institute and regularly contributes to professional publications and community boards. Ian offers, “The global and social events of the 2020 and 2021 have caused a seismic shift the work we, disability service providers, do. Our roles on campus have been elevated to greater levels of importance and visibility as we are increasingly sought out to provide input in major institutional decisions. The opportunity we now have to embed our philosophy of equity, inclusion, and access into all aspects of the institution should serve as a mission that guides our path forward.”

L. Scott Lissner
L. Scott Lissner is the Americans with Disabilities Act Coordinator and 504 Compliance Officer for The Ohio State University, where he is also an Associate of the John Glenn School of Public Policy and serves as a lecturer for the Moritz College of Law, the Knowlton School of Architecture and Disability Studies. Engaged in community and professional service, Scott is a Past President and Public Policy Chair of the Association on Higher Education and Disability (AHEAD) and serves on the Board of Directors for The Center for Disability Empowerment, VSA Ohio, and the Editorial Board for Thompson’s ADA Compliance Guide. He is a regular and popular presenter both nationally and internationally, serves on numerous boards in support of access and equity. Recent publications include The Impact of the ADAAA of 2008 on Higher Education, Thompsons Publications; Universal Design in the Institutional Setting: Weaving a Philosophy into Campus Planning in Universal Design: From Accessibility to Zoning (J. Cowley-Evans & J. Nasser (Eds.); From Legal Principle to Informed Practice with J. E. Jarrow; and A Long View of Change, Disability Blog, The Department of Labor’s Office of Disability Employment Policy.

Michael Manister
Michael R. Masinter is an emeritus Professor of law at Nova Southeastern University in Fort Lauderdale who taught, litigated, and wrote about disability rights issues throughout his 42 years of teaching. He writes a bimonthly column for Disability Compliance for Higher Education, and serves on the legal panel of the American Civil Liberties Union of Florida. He has been a member in good standing of the Florida bar and the bar of various federal courts since 1973, and graduated from Georgetown University Law Center in 1973 and Stanford University in 1968.

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