Uncommon side: The slow learner — part I

The qualifying test for Electrician Grade I was divided into two sections: written and hands-on. Both parts were timed. Four maintenance employees took the test. Three qualified; Joe Chernoff was the only rejectee.
By Raymond Dreyfack May 1, 1998

The qualifying test for Electrician Grade I was divided into two sections: written and hands-on. Both parts were timed. Four maintenance employees took the test. Three qualified; Joe Chernoff was the only rejectee. He had completed about 3/4 of the hands-on section, and 2/3 of the written part.

In giving Chernoff the news, Maintenance Foreman Harry Altshuler expressed his regrets.

It’s not fair,” Chernoff groused. “If I had been given more time to finish the tests, I would have qualified.”

“Maybe so, but what’s not fair? You were given the same amount of time as the others.”

“That’s the point,” Chernoff said. “I have a learning disability — attention-deficit disorder. Under the Americans With Disabilities Act, I’m entitled to additional leeway in taking tests in an effort to advance myself.”

Altshuler disagreed. “If you were given special accommodation, everyone and his brother would come up with a reason to demand similar treatment.”

Chernoff refused to settle for that and threatened to file a grievance claiming violation of ADA regulations.

Question: Do you think Chernoff has a viable case?

Please send your ideas on how to resolve this case to: Raymond Dreyfack, c/o Plant Engineering magazine, 1350 E. Touhy Ave., Des Plaines, IL 60018; fax 847-390-2656; e-mail cfirestone@ cahners.com.