Many feel that educational interpreting and translation are hitting a tipping point, similar to that experienced by legal and healthcare interpreters in the 1990s and 2000s, and by signed language interpreters in the 1970s and 1980s. The field has matured to the point that stakeholders from all over the country are clamoring for more recognition, more resources and a more formal structure.
In that spirit, ITE coordinated an exploratory conversation about the creation of national ethics and standards for interpreters and translation in education. The meeting was held onsite on September 27, 2019 at the Orange County Office of Education 3rd Annual Interpreters and Translators Conference. 65 people attended onsite and 35 attended online.
The event was a working meeting to determine next steps for the creation of a body to pursue a national effort to create educational interpreter and translator ethics and standards.
The two primary goals of the the first meeting were:
provide a summary of the process the National Council for Interpreting in Health Care went through to create national ethics and standards for healthcare interpreters as a jumping off point for the conversation.
agree to a series of next steps to publicize this effort, ensure broad inclusion and begin to establish the group's structure and goals.
5 speakers provided key framing for those attending, starting with Healthcare Interpreting founding pioneer Cindy Roat, who gave a 15-minute history and analysis of how healthcare interpreting successfully created its ethics and standards. Cindy was followed by four lightning presentations about efforts taking place in a variety of education settings across the country:
Angel Ho, Oakland School District, California
Betty Tapias-Heinrich, University of Minnesota
Victoria Baldwin, Jefferson County Schools, Colorado
Jennifer Love, Prince George's County Schools, Maryland
During the meeting, participants provided input to the following questions using a polling platform called Mentimeter, responses in the Zoom chat box, and by handing in 3x5 cards a the onsite venue.
Who is here? (see graphic)
Where are you attending from? (see graphic)
What are the biggest challenges facing educational interpreters and translators? (see Excel form)
Do you support the effort to launch a national effort to create ethics and standards for T&I in education? (see Excel form)
What structure should the effort take? (see graphic)
Based on Cindy's presentation, what are the next steps? (see graphic)
What additional next steps would you like to see? (see Excel file)
How can we make this effort as inclusive as possible? (see graphic)
Below, we have provided the following information from the meeting:
The meeting agenda.
Cindy Roat's PowerPoint presentation
Mentimeter results in graph and Excel form
STAY TUNED for the complete report on the meeting and our next steps. We are still collating the written responses and processing the video of the meeting. These will be posted soon.
download Meeting files
Mentimeter poll graphics
JOIN THE EFFORT
We have set up a new listserve using the listserv site simplelists.com.
Please sign up to receive updates and join the conversation.
Our hope is to build a broad, diverse group from all parts of educational interpreting and translation committed to professionalizing our field.
What is the ITE Workgroup?
The ITE Workgroup is a group of individuals interested in professionalizing interpreters and translators in education. We seek to launch a national conversation to build momentum towards the creation of a formal process for creating ethics and standards for educational interpreters and translators.
Barry S. Olsen
Sign up for the ITE Listserve
We have set up a new listserve using the listserv site simplelists.com. Katharine Allen from InterpretAmerica is hosting and funding the listserv for the time being. Luis Hernandez from the Riverside County Office of Education is co-moderating.
The NCIHC Model
In the 1990s, the healthcare interpreting profession was in a similar place to educational interpreting and translation. Individual states had begun to create comprehensive ethics and standards defining the proper role and conduct for healthcare interpreters. By the early 2000s, the National Council on Health Care in Interpreting (NCIHC) organized to conduct an authentic, national effort to create ethics and standards that would represent the entire country and could serve as a cornerstone around which to build a formal structure for the new profession. You can read more about this effort at the NCIHC website. (www.ncihc.org)
What are our goals?
Every conversation has to start somewhere. Over the summer of 2019, the ITE Workgroup began to email each other about the need to spark a national effort around the creation of ethics and standards for educational interpreters and translators, which would necessitate a nation-wide conversation.