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In 2006, the Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf (RID) found that 60% of the K-12 school districts sampled had unfilled Educational Interpreter positions.  One respondent in this study commented, “I cannot find anyone to fill the position,” and stated that students were struggling in the classroom (National Center on Deafness, July 2007).   School districts cannot allow these positions to go unfilled.  This situation is often resolved by hiring unqualified interpreters (Commission on Education of the Deaf, 1988, p. 104).  In fact, the RID (2007) findings indicate when a school district must fill a gap in coverage most (54.3%) reported filling requests with non-certified interpreters.

The South Carolina Department of Education, Clemson University, and South Carolina School for the Deaf and the Blind have partnered to create the South Carolina Educational Interpreting Center, (SCEIC) in order to undertake four cornerstones of service for in-service educational interpreters, school districts, the State Department of Education, and most importantly Deaf and Hard of Hearing students and their parents.  This grant, through the State Department of Education, will allow South Carolina Educational Interpreting Center (SCEIC) to offer excellent resources for all inservice interpreters in order to achieve a higher level of excellence in education of all Deaf and Hard of Hearing student in the state.

South Carolina Educational Interpreting Center (SCEIC) will provide   Educational Interpreter Performance Assessment (EIPA) assessments to all in-service working educational interpreters.  Each educational interpreter will receive an action plan that will empower him/her with the resources necessary to develop and refine his/her interpreting skills.  Each action plan will include tools such as language acquisition courses, language immersion, one-on-one mentoring, and targeted skill workshops.

With these resources available to all in-service South Carolina educational interpreters, South Carolina Educational Interpreting Center (SCEIC) is committed to assisting educational interpreters enhance their skills in order to provide better access to education for all Deaf and Hard of Hearing students in South Carolina.

 

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