Thursday, November 12, 2009

Would you hire this student?

A learning-disabled freshman suing Princeton University for refusing to allow her extra time to take exams was dealt a setback this week, as a federal judge refused a temporary restraining order on the eve of midterms. ...

[Diane] Metcalf-Leggette has been diagnosed with a series of disorders that limit her ability to concentrate, process information and communicate in writing.

Metcalf-Leggette learned of her diagnoses in 2003. Later, at the private school she attended, she received a 100 percent time extension for exams; a 100 percent extension on the SAT; and a 200 percent extension on the ACT.

According to the suit, Metcalf-Leggett has:

• Mixed-Receptive-Expressive Language Disorder, which limits her ability to comprehend language, express language or recall material.

• Disorder of Written Expression, which leaves her ability to communicate in writing below the level expected based on age, intelligence or life experiences. When she writes, she has to repeatedly re-check what she has composed.

• Developmental Coordination Disorder, which leaves her ability to spell, punctuate and form sentences below the level expected based on age, intelligence or life experiences. She needs to read material several times over, isolate key words and highlight them so she can locate them again. Also under this disorder, her visual-motor processing skills are in the sixth percentile, "far below the average person, let alone the typical Princeton University student." She also suffers eye strain when taking tests and needs periodic breaks because of the way she reads passages over and over.

• Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, which limits her ability to focus. When reading, any distraction requires her to go back to the beginning of the passage.
--Charles Toutant, New Jersey Law Journal, on a lawsuit where the student loses even if she wins

2 comments:

efraci said...

I don't really understand the point of this post. Regardless of whether she will be hired, she still has the right to pursue an education. I realize that this is probably not what you are implying, but drawing attention to the student probably hurts her story more than anything.

Yi-An said...

Hey James! It's been awhile! I think I'd agree with the previous comment - assuming that her multiple disorders aren't an elaborate fake, it feels like it's admirable that she's even at Princeton. To point to the fact that it's unlikely any private sector organization wouldn't hire her seems unnecessary. Haha, but in ten years, she may be teaching at Yale!