How Education Systems Use Language Services to Ensure EL Students Progress Academically

How Education Systems Use Language Services to Ensure EL Students Progress Academically | Telelanguage

As United States schools become more linguistically and culturally diverse, is important to look at how education systems use language services to ensure that ELL students are progressing academically. In Fall of 2015, the percentage of public school students in the United States who were ELLs (English Language Learner) was 9.5%, amounting to 4.8 million public school students. If language barriers are not overcome in education settings (K-12 and Higher Education), it can hinder learning and academic involvement, and violate the rights of students and their families.

Providing language services is key to communicating with limited-English speaking students and families, especially during the COVID-19 health crisis, as the need for information and school-family connections increases through distance learning.

Today we’ll look at how education systems are using language services to overcome language barriers for LEP/ELL students, families, and communities as students nationwide head back to school for either in-person classes or for distance learning.


States with the Highest Share of EL/ELL Students in Public Schools (Fall 2017)

*Source: National Center for Education Studies (NCES), School Year Fall 2017


10 States with the Largest Share of EL/ELL Students

  1. California (19.2%)
  2. Texas (18%)
  3. Nevada (17.1%)
  4. New Mexico (16.3%)
  5. Alaska (12.1%)
  6. Colorado (11.9%)
  7. Washington (11.7%)
  8. Illinois (11.3%)
  9. Kansas (10.3%)
  10. Florida (10.1%)

While these 10 states had the highest share of  EL/ELL students, 31 states had populations of greater than 6%, and the national average was 10.1%.


10 Most Commonly Reported Home Languages of ELL Students: Fall 2017

While the United States reports more than 350 languages spoken in U.S. homes, spanish speakers made up 74.8% of all ELL/EL students in the Fall of 2017, and made up 7.6% of all students in U.S. public schools. Arabic and Chinese were the next most commonly reported home languages, followed by English, Vietnamese, Somali, Russian, Portuguese, Haitian – Haitian Creole, and Hmong. There have also been rapid increases of ELL/EL students who speak Swahili, Nepali, or a Karen language at home.

*Image Source: National Center for Education Studies (NCES), School Year Fall 2017


5 Facts to Understand the Need for Language Services in Higher Education

  1. Top Ten Origin Countries of International Students, SY 2016–17 (Image Source: Migration Policy Institute)

    Second-generation Americans, children born in the United States to immigrant parents, account for almost 20% of all U.S. college students. Community College Consortium for Immigrant Education

  2. Around 24% of community college students are second-generation Americans. Community College Consortium for Immigrant Education

  3. From 1990 to 2014, the total number of international students in the U.S. more than doubled. Migration Policy Institute

  4. In SY 2016–17, international students contributed nearly $37 billion to the U.S. economy and created or supported more than 450,000 jobs, according to NAFSA estimates. Migration Policy Institute

  5. The United States hosted 1.1. million (of the 4.6 million) international students enrolled in higher education institutions for SY 2016-17. Migration Policy Institute

Why Must Education Systems Use Language Services?

Under Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, schools must ensure that students who are learning English have equal opportunity to progress academically. Language services for higher education help ensure that students who are learning English are receiving the language support they need to progress in school.

Students Who May Require Language Services

  • Students not born in the United States or whose native language is a language other than English
  • Students who come from environments where a language other than English is dominant
  • Students with difficulty speaking, reading, writing, or understanding the English language
  • Students from environments where a language other than English has had a significant impact on his/her level of English language proficiency


In addition to providing necessary language assistance for students, it is also critical to be able to communicate effectively with limited-English speaking parents and gaurdians.  

According to the U.S. Department of Justice, schools must communicate information to limited English proficient parents in a language they can understand about any program, service, or activity that is called to the attention of parents who are proficient in English. This includes, but is not limited to, information related to:

  • registration and enrollment in school
  • grievance procedures
  • notices of school programs nondiscrimination
  • language assistance programs
  • parent handbooks
  • report cards
  • gifted and talented programs
  • student discipline policies and procedures
  • magnet and charter schools
  • special education and related services, and requests for parent permission for meetings to discuss special education student participation in school activities
  • parent-teacher conferences

Studies show that parental involvement is an important factor for a child’s education. CEPS Journal cites language barries as a main barrier to parental involvement in education. Using language services, such as video remote interpretation, telephonic interpretation, and written translation helps ensure that LEP parents and guardians are engaged in their child’s learning.


What Eudcation Systems Have the Greatest Need Langauge Services?

  • K-12 Public Schools
  • U.S. School Districts
  • Colleges and Universities
  • Charter Schools
  • Private Schools


How Education Systems Use Language Services: Over-the-Phone and Video Remote Interpretation

Telephonic Interpretation and Video Remote Interpretation give educators on-demand access to professional interpreters 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year. Whether it’s a scheduled meeting or an unexpected call, a video interpreter or over-the-phone interpreter can be easily added to any call or videoconferencing application, with no special equipment needed. While telephonic interpretation is a perfect solution for spoken languages, video remote interpretation (VRI) has the benefit of visual communication with the interpreter, offering the ability to see the facial expressions of students/families, ensuring a more personal interaction, and providing a high level of accuracy. Because of the visual aspect, VRI can be used for spoken languages as well as American Sign Language to serve Limited English Proficient, and Deaf or Hard-of-Hearing students and communities.

Video Interpretation for Multilingual Communication [Whitepaper] | TelelanguageTelelanguage Video technology has become essential for education institutions during the COVID-19 pandemic as schools engage students and families in distance learning. This can pose problems for English Language Learning (ELL) students, and non-English speaking families if language access is not properly implemented. During this time, many education systems have increased use of Video Remote Interpreting to communicate with students and families about distance learning. Utilizing a video remote interpreter for video conferencing with parents/guardians or in distance learning sessions ensures that accurate communication is taking place.

Live interpreters can be easily added in seconds with no added equipment needed to provide language interpretation in educational videos, video and phone meetings, and live virtual lessons using video conferencing tools like Zoom, Skype, and Webex – as well as any other virtual learning platform.

Telelanguage provides certified interpreters with experience in the education sector to provide spoken language and American Sign Language interpretation to help organizations communicate with students, parents, communities, and staff.

Benefits of Remote Interpreting for Education Systems

Professional Interpreters: Telelanguage interpreters are 100% U.S. based and superior-trained to ensure that our clients receive the highest quality interpretations – every time! Telelanguage’s education interpreters are tested and trained to interpret for the education industry. Nationally accepted codes of ethics and standards of practice are routinely reviewed throughout the interpreter’s training to ensure the highest quality services.

Fast Connections: Over-the-Phone Interpreting and Video Remote Interpreting Services are available around the clock, 24/7 to take critical inbound calls. Telelanguage’s proprietary technology allows us to provide the fastest connect times in the industry with zero interruption in service. With our technological capabilities, we are able to utilize automated dialing features that ensure a fast connection time for all of our clients, regardless of organizational size.

Access from Anywhere: Telelanguage remote interpreting services can be accessed globally. No matter where you are in the world, you’ll always have access to a professional interpreter.


Document Translation for Education Systems

For appropriate language access in academic settings, written materials communicating with Limited English Proficient students should be professionally translated.


Commonly Translated Documents for K-12 Education:

  • Community Notices and Bulletins
  • Report Cards
  • Standard Letters
  • Standard Email Communication Notices
  • Testing Materials
  • Brochures and Pamphlets
  • Student/Parent Forms
  • Legal Documents
  • School Bus Schedules and After School / Extracurricular Activities
  • Course Descriptions and Class Schedules
  • COVID-19 Notices
  • Distance Learning Materials and Instructions


Commonly Translated Documents for Higher Education:

  • Diplomas of professional education and higher education
  • Academic references
  • Academic publications
  • Campus Information and Student Services
  • Financial Aid Information
  • Enrollment and Registration Information
  • Brochures, Marketing, and Pamphlets
  • Course Descriptions and Class Schedules
  • Legal Documents
  • GPA and Transcript Request Forms
  • Testing/Lecture Materials
  • Community Notices and Bulletins
  • Distance Learning Materials and Instructions
  • COVID-19 and Public Health Notices

Telelanguage Document Translation Services are 100% human translations, and our education translators are subject matter experts to ensure the highest level of accuracy in education settings.

Why Education Systems Use Language Services from Telelanguage

  • Certified and professional interpreters
  • Translators are subject-matter experts
  • More than 300 languages available
  • Complete education language services: Telephonic interpretation, Video Remote Interpretation, On-Site Interpretation, Document Translation
  • Cultural Awareness Training and Free Support Materials
  • Responsive customer support. Available 24/7, 365 days a year.
  • Flexible rate plans.
  • Free Services Trial Programs
  • Confidentiality Compliance
  • Fastest Connect Times



Download the Free Whitepaper!

As a leading provider of language interpretation and translation services, our dedicated customer support allows us to create a better interpretation experience for our clients. Join school systems accross the country who trust Telelanguage as their dedicated language services provider.

Learn more about how education systems use language services to support the needs of students in K-12 and higher education settings. Download the Free Whitepaper!

Telelanguage believes that education systems should have access to the best-qualified language support. Ready to take your language support for LEP students and families to the next level? Telelanguage can help. We provide professional education translation services and education interpretation services in over 350 languages. Contact us for a free quote or demo.

COVID-19 Language Support is Available for Education Clients

In light of the COVID-19 crisis, Telelanguage is offering all new contracts our language interpretation and translation services with no contract required. You will pay ONLY for the minutes you use, and there are no minimum requirements.  


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6,000+ interpreters ready to speak in 350 languages!

Call Telelanguage today at (888) 983-5352

Telephonic Interpretation, Video Remote Interpretation, On-Site Interpretation, and Translation Services