RCM&D Corporate Blog

Higher Education Alert: Regulatory Updates on the Horizon

Posted on: Thu, 11 Apr 2013

Now more than ever, colleges and universities are being forced to address continuously-evolving legal and regulatory requirements placed on them.  With these changes come increased compliance costs, administrative burdens, federal funding imperatives, and implementation logistics. With two recent regulatory updates looming, Division III Sickle Cell Trait Screening and the Clery Act Amendment, it’s imperative to stay current on these laws and regulations.

Division III Sickle Cell Trait Screening

After a year-long debate and education campaign, the Division III (DIII) delegates at this year’s NCAA Conventions approved a proposal mandating all DIII schools to implement a sickle cell trait screening policy for their student-athletes no later than academic year 2014/2015.  The approval also requires confirmation status for all transfer and incoming freshman student-athletes to commence by academic year 2013/2014.

According to the new proposal, as noted on NCAA.org, prior to participating in intercollegiate athletics, schools must confirm the sickle cell trait status of incoming student-athletes through one of the following methods:

  • Certified documents – Student-athlete may supply documented findings of a sickle cell solubility exam administered before participation;
  • Pending records – If the student-athlete completed the solubility test but is awaiting results, the individual may participate in the athletic program only if he/she receives mandatory education about the trait, signs a hold harmless release, and receives proper precautions as determined by the institution; or
  • Testing avoidance – The student-athlete may sign a hold harmless release declining sickle cell trait testing; however, prior to signing a waiver, he/she will be provided education on the significance of opting to sign the release.  Before athletics involvement, a student-athlete who completes the release must engage in sickle cell trait education and receive accommodations as set forth by the institution.

Additionally, the DIII Presidents Council approved funding to defray expenses associated with implementing a sickle cell trait program.  All active DIII schools would be eligible for up to $500.  Funding will be available through a web-based reimbursement system, where institutions will be required to log in and submit their sickle cell trait screening policy, which must be signed by the athletic director.  Schools will also be asked to provide the number of transfers and first year student-athletes for 2013/2014.            

Clery Act Amendment

Earlier this month, President Obama signed a bill that amended, and ultimately strengthened, the Jeanne Clery Act through the Campus Sexual Violence Elimination Act (Campus SaVE).  The new amendment requires colleges and universities to include “domestic violence, dating violence, and stalking incidents that were reported to campus security or local authorities” in their annual report.  Furthermore, in addition to the existing categories of actual or perceived race, gender, religion, sexual orientation, ethnicity, or disability, schools will be required to report whether a victim was targeted because of actual or perceived national origin or gender identity.  

 The Clery Center for Security on Campus will present a webinar, “Campus SaVE: What Your Institution Needs to Know,”  on April 15, 2013 (2:00 pm EST) to review the new requirements per the Clery Act amendment (click on the link to register).

RCM&D’s dedicated Education Practice team members are committed to keeping our clients up to date with regulatory mandates and compliance-related issues that are specific to education.  We understand the nuances that affect colleges and universities, and our team is ready to assist with tailored resolutions to mitigate your unique exposures. 

For more information, please reference the following articles:

“Sickle Cell Trait,” NCAA.org

“Sickle Cell Trait Screening,” United Educators (accessible to schools insured by United Educators)

 “Coming Soon: New Changes to the Jeanne Clery Act,” Education Law Review

Summary of the Jeanne Clery Act,” The Clery Center for Security on Campus

Email Clint at cwevodau@rcmd.com or connect with him on Linked In with your questions or comments.

Tags: 
Clery Act Amendment; sickle cell trait