Classroom Interpreting


What parents should know about educational interpreters and an interpreted education.

Almost 95% of all babies who are deaf or hard of hearing are born into hearing families with no background in deafness or hearing loss. There’s a fast climb up the learning curve for most parents who must quickly gain the knowledge and skills necessary to meet the needs of their child. This process is on going, presenting new issues at each stage of transition from infancy through the toddler, preschool, elementary, middle and high school years. Communication issues will always be a priority, and parents must consider how their child will access communication in the world around him or her. During the school years, that consideration may include the use of an educational interpreter.

No assumptions should be made about this type of support. Families, particularly hearing families with no experience using interpreters themselves, must ask some tough questions about the effectiveness of an interpreted education. Preparation is essential to creating and maintaining successful communication access through educational interpreters in school. Here are some areas that should be explored:

How will my child access communication at school?
Considerations for an Interpreted Education
What is the role of an educational interpreter?
What are the responsibilities of an educational interpreter?
What are the rights, role, and responsibilities of the student?
What are the rights and responsibilities of parents?
What does special education law say about educational interpreters?
Building parent/interpreters partnerships to assure full and effective communication access.
What kind of training is required to become an interpreter, and for students to use an interpreter?
Case Studies: Exploring Different Perspectives on Educational Interpreting
Deaf & Hard of Hearing Products
Contributing Authors