ASL Interpreter News from Florida: To Lawmakers’ Surprise, No Qualifications for ASL Interpreters

sign-in-classSome state lawmakers want stronger qualifications for interpreters working with deaf and hard of hearing students.

There’s a bill moving through the legislature that would update the qualification process for educational interpreters. That’s because currently neither the State nor the Board of Education has established criteria. Representative Lori Berman of Boynton Beach says it’s time to change that.

“Florida is one of only five states that has no standard for sign language interpreter qualifications in K-12 programs,” she said.

American Sign Language or ASL is the primary mode of communication for deaf and hard of hearing people in the US. ASL is comprised of hand signs and movements combined with different facial expressions and postures. Most every feature of spoken language is also present in sign language, so ASL has its own grammar, syntax and slang, as well as accents and regional dialects. Christine Sun Lee is a deaf artist, and she gave a TED talk comparing ASL to music. Here she is speaking through an interpreter.

To read full article, click here.

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