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Despite such critical roles in DHH education, however, educational interpreters remain the only specifically-designated Related Service Providers (RSPs) largely unregulated by standardized expectations in their preparation, training, and credentials. Thus, many individuals remain underqualified for the educational interpreting positions they assume. As DHH students continue to suffer from dismal educational outcomes (Lund, Werfel, & Schuele, 2015; Sarant, Harris, & Benneta, 2015), it is absolutely crucial that the current state of educational interpreting be acknowledged and addressed.
Decades of research illustrates a state of confusion among stakeholders regarding quality standards for educational interpreting services. In order to address the ambiguity, research has indicated the establishment of a professional organization for educational interpreters, development of professional guidelines, and continued research have consistently been acknowledged as essential first steps. (Antia & Kreimeyer, 2001; Commission on Education of the Deaf, 1988; Dahl & Wilcox, 1990; Hayes, 1991; Johnson, Taylor, Schick, Brown, & Bolster, 2018; Jones, Clark, & Soltz, 1997; Langer, 2004; Patrie & Taylor, 2008; Smith, 2016; Schick, 2007; Stuckless, 1989).
In 2016, the National Association of Interpreters in Education (NAIE) was founded and “Professional Guidelines for Interpreting in Educational Settings” was subsequently published in January 2019 as a direct response to these longstanding calls from the field. Increased awareness and dissemination of the publication are essential in solidifying best practices along with continual research in this area. The goal of the presentation is to inform stakeholders about the guidelines, their purpose, and the standards outlined within them to promote the standardization and qualifications of educational interpreters.