The condition flare statement is intended to affirm that a student has a condition that is variable in nature and as such, the student can't always predict when they may need occasional flexibility. Most students approved for this accommodation can recover from a flare in 1-2 days and will have a flare no more than 2-3 times/quarter. We word the condition vaguely because the student can't predict the exact flexibility that may be be needed or when, and SAS cannot know in advance the specific requirements of your course (and therefore, what flexibility may be practicable).
In general, we advocate leniency (without penalty) as long as a student's requests fall within the guidelines of 3 instances per quarter and no more than 2-day extensions AND the student fulfills the responsibilities of the condition flare accommodation:
- The student contacts you to notify you of a flare,
- Copies their SAS advisor on their request for flexibility, and
- Does so prior to the deadline (which is usually possible—SAS would let you know if the student became incapacitated and it was not).
SAS asks the student to copy SAS on the email (and you to reply-all in your response) so that we are
- Readily available for consultation for you and the student
- Aware if an easy resolution to the request for flexibility has been reached or if our assistance may be needed
- You are always invited to reach out to the advisor separately to consult in the event of any questions/concerns
- Able to monitor if a student is indeed having occasional flares or may be in need of additional support from SAS, an undergraduate dean, or case manager regarding possible intervention
If you already build into your course that students can have 3 excused absences, this should generally cover the attendance component of the condition flare accommodation. In other words, a student approved for condition flare is not automatically entitled to 3 excused absences in addition to those that all students are allowed. If a student approved for condition flare cites a flare in more than 3 instances in a quarter, please contact SAS.
If you are curious, the students approved for this accommodation may have a chronic health condition, psychological disability, or other condition that cannot be reliably stabilized, or they otherwise experience periodic episodes associated with it. In addition, medications for these conditions, especially if changes in dosing or medication type need to be made, may produce unforeseen side-effects. Please do not ask the student about the nature of their disability, however.