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PHAME Eligibility Guidelines

Revised July 25, 2011

PHAME serves adults (i.e., individuals who are 17 years of age and older) who have Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities (I/DD). We serve individuals with a wide variety of I/DD, though the current majority of PHAME students have Down Syndrome or are on the Autism spectrum. Some of these individuals may have physical disabilities such as hearing/vision impairment or limited mobility in addition to their I/DD. PHAME is not currently designed to serve adults with solely physical disabilities.

Though participation in PHAME provides therapeutic benefits for many student artists, PHAME is not a therapy program. We are a fine and performing arts academy staffed by arts professionals who have interest, training, or experience working with adults with I/DD.

For the safety of all PHAME student artists, volunteers, and staff, each potential student must meet the following standards:

  1. The applicant must be able to benefit from the program in some way (i.e., creative growth, skill development, social interaction, etc.)
  2. The applicant must be adaptable to the group/classroom environment without unduly disrupting the quality of the experience for others. This includes but is not limited to:
    • Regularly attending the classes in which he/she is enrolled. PHAME is not a drop-in program, and most classes require participation in 10 week terms.
    • Actively participating in program activities to the best of his/her ability.
    • Following the directions of staff and/or volunteers.
    • Willingness and ability to abide by the PHAME Code of Conduct and other PHAME student policies.
  3. The applicant must not be physically, verbally, or sexually abusive, or have a history of those behaviors.
  4. The applicant must be free of conditions and behaviors that might not be manageable in a group setting. Examples of these conditions may be:
    • Necessary mechanical assistance for physical transfer (this does not include the use of wheelchairs).
    • Dependence on highly technical life sustaining equipment or apparatus.
    • Violent outbursts or behaviors, whether physical or verbal.
    • The need for constant one-on-one supervision by PHAME staff.
  5. The applicant must be able to eat, medicate him/herself, and use the rest room independently, without the assistance of PHAME staff. If the applicant is unable to perform these tasks without assistance, the applicant is responsible for providing his/her own personal attendant/caregiver as necessary.  Personal care is not within the purview of the PHAME staff, and caregivers are welcome in the classroom.
  6. PHAME is currently unable to provide sign language interpretation. If the applicant’s primary means of communication is through signing, and he or she requires an interpreter to effectively engage with other students/staff, the applicant must provide a personal interpreter.
  7. Unacceptable behaviors/conditions exhibited by a student while at PHAME may necessitate disciplinary action or dismissal from the program. These behaviors/conditions include but are not limited to:
    • Displaying behavior(s) or condition(s) that fail to meet the standards outlined in Items 2 through 6, including violations of the PHAME Code of Conduct.
    • Pre-existing behavioral issue(s) or medical condition(s) not reported to PHAME prior to enrollment, especially if these issues are disruptive and/or unmanageable.
  8. No applicant will be admitted to PHAME if his/her health or behavior in any way endangers other students/staff, or if there is a problem requiring the attention of a physician. Such conditions and behaviors are defined as, but are not limited to:
    • Fever.
    • An open, draining lesion or rash.
    • Topical parasites (i.e., lice, scabies, etc.)
    • Signs of infectious or communicable disease.
    • Outstanding legal issues, such as an active restraining order placed against an applicant.
    • History of physical or sexual abuse perpetrated by the applicant, or threats of such behavior.

PHAME will be the party responsible for acceptance or denial, and reserves the right to reject applications prior to attendance or to deny admittance to classes upon arrival based on inability to meet program eligibility standards.