This article outlines the steps that schools must take after receiving an Office for Civil Rights (OCR) complaint.
An OCR Complaint is Received
When a school receives a complaint letter from the Office for Civil Rights (OCR) the letter usually includes links to specific web pages that are deemed inaccessible. The school then works with their OCR legal counsel to draft a response to the complaint, which should include the following components:
- Auditor of Record with bona fides (qualifications) i.e. the person who will review the internal audit and assist the school with the testing and resolution process. The auditor also provides the final sign off on the audit report.
- Plan for New Content which typically includes:
- a detailed description of the planning process
- the manual testing approach (which produces the audit report)
- policies and procedures that will address the issues stated in the complaint
- staff training plan to ensure a proactive approach to alleviate future complaints
A Resolution Agreement is Received
After the OCR review the response to the complaint, they will send a Resolution Agreement to the school listing all the items agreed upon as well as approval of the Auditor of Record.
Siteimprove can help you through the initial process. Send us your OCR Complaint and OCR Resolution Agreement (if you have received one) and we will arrange a meeting to discuss your Plan for New Content.
Once your auditor is approved, you can commence automated testing with tools like Siteimprove’s Intelligence Platform. In addition, manual testing is required on all pages listed in the complaint letter. Manual Testing is required in the audit process to ensure compliance including compliance with assistive technology. The auditor may determine additional pages necessary that contain elements listed in the Audit Report.
- The output of manual testing is comprised in a detailed audit report.
- The auditor reviews the findings of the testing and provides recommendations to identify and remediate accessibility issues that were identified during the testing phase.
- The audit report and review are used to build a Corrective Action Plan (CAP).
Siteimprove has expertise in manual testing and advisory services using methodology created in partnership with experts in the areas of Accessibility as well as experienced Assistive Technology tool users.
We conduct both automatic and manual testing using guidelines that adhere to WCAG 2.0 guidelines, NVDA, JAWS, Voiceover and other technologies. Once tests are completed, our findings are presented in a written Audit Report that is reviewed with your team.
Corrective Action Plan (CAP)
Based on the audit results, a CAP is produced. Schools must create and submit the plan to OCR. This may include strategic goals, funding, responsibilities, and timelines. The CAP and the detailed audit report are submitted to OCR for approval.
Siteimprove can provide you with a Corrective Action Plan template and experienced Auditors will provide advice on how to create and implement your plan.
Once approved, the school must adopt the requirements as stated in the plan, including:
- Continuous manual testing, ongoing monitoring, and reporting using Siteimprove’s Intelligence Platform.
- Website accessibility training for employees.
Siteimprove offers a comprehensive training program with e-learning and instructor-led training for you and your staff. Contact Siteimprove's Professional Services for more information.