Shelley Maxwell – Student who can’t stay awake takes watchdog to court – Home News, UK – The Independent
A student who suffers from the chronic sleep disorder narcolepsy is to have her case heard by the Court of Appeal in London on Thursday, following a six-year battle against what she perceives to be disability discrimination by her university.
Shelley Maxwell is seeking to overturn a decision by the students’ watchdog, the Office of the Independent Adjudicator, that it could not give a ruling on alleged disability discrimination. The hearing is being seen as a test case by Ms Maxwell and her lawyer. They argue the OIA’s decision closes the door to hundreds of disabled students seeking justice if they have a complaint about how they have been treated at university.
I have never really thought about education in this way before. When you are a student with a familiar condition it must be easier to receive support, and more importantly the right kind. What is the right kind of support? Transcripts of all classes? Looking back at my sleepy days in the classroom -hm yes… that would have been very useful. But even so, reading even reading at home put me to sleep, and still does. I found that I missed out on vital details that would have helped me in getting a comprehensive overview. Taped classes? I tried that for a while but there was always something going wrong with the equipment or the teacher’s voice was different from the one before and therefore difficult to record. At one exam I had a person checking up on me every 5-10 minutes to ensure I wasn’t sleeping, micro-sleeping, automatic behaviour etc. With little additional time the exam went so well that after a couple of months I was offered to teach the introductory class myself. It was, however, a practical class, and I always learn better by doing than by reading.
What kind of assistance would you find helpful?