Frequently asked questions
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.
For the time being, we have adopted the name "Interpreting and Translation in Education," along with the accompnaying logo, in order to have an identity with which we can get the ball rolling.
On September 27, 2019, we held an inaugural conversation that was attended onsite and online. The event was hosted by the Orange County Office of Education during their 3rd Annual Interpreter and Translators Conference in Irvine, California. We had approximately 35 onsite attendees and 65 who attended virtually.
As a result of this meeting, there is a clear mandate to move forward with the goal of creating a formal effort to create national ethics and standards. The conversation is moving forward through the ITE Listserve and through interaction with this webpage.
We would like to congratulation the original group of people who spent time during Summer 2019 to organize the successful inaugural event.
Barry S. Olsen
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.
We have taken the initial steps of setting up a listserve open to all, and of organizing the exploratory conversation that took place on September 27, 2019. Beyond convening the meeting and managing a basic organization infrastructure as this effort starts to take shape, we make no claim to ownership of this process, nor to any predetermined approach. Our sole goal is to get as many to the table as possible.
It is our hope that this initial stage will cast as wide a net as possible. As a more coherent effort takes shape, decisions will certainly be made about whether to separate interpreting and translation into distinct efforts or not. Clear definitions of role will be needed, which, among other things, will have to take into account the unique tasks that classroom-based signed language interpreters already fulfill, and how they may differ from contract ASL interpreters who interpret for deaf family members in a manner more consistent with spoken-language interpreters.
All of that is in the future. The current effort is about getting everyone together.
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)
This model represents a potential guide for educational interpreters and translators today. At the September meeting, we will present this model as a starting place for the discussion.
Sign up for the ITE Listserv
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.
Please sign up 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.
SIGN UP HERE
Who is running the website and listserv?
Currently, Katharine Allen, co-president of InterpretAmerica, is donating her time and funds to provide the website and listserv platforms for ITE, including purchasing the domain name: www.iteworkgroup.org.
She hopes this effort will evolve and mature, and in time the platform can be transferred to whatever more formal organization is created.
If you have questions, comments or concerns, feel free to contact Katharine at: firstname.lastname@example.org.