Video Remote Interpreting in Education Settings

Video Remote Interpreting in Education Settings | TelelanguageAs schools across the country continue with distance learning, Video Remote Interpreting in Education settings proves to be a valuable interpretation service to support the needs of LEP, ELL, Deaf, and Hard-of-Hearing students, families, and communities.

The number of students, parents, and caregivers in need of language support grows as the United States continues to become more linguistically and culturally diverse. Almost 1 in 4 children in the U.S. speak a language other than English at home. It is crucial that public schools are able to meet the needs of their LEP populations under Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which mandates that students who are learning English must have equal opportunity to progress academically.

Today, we’ll look at the need for professional interpretation services for public schools, and how Video Remote Interpreting in education settings can help school systems provide their communities with the support they need, especially in light of distance learning during the ongoing COVID-19 health crisis.   


Understanding the Need for Video Remote Interpreting in Education Settings

In Fall of 2015, the percentage of public school students in the United States who were ELLs was 9.5%, or 4.8 million students. The number of refugee children, as a percentage of all refugees resettling to the U.S., has also increased over the past decade, and education systems must be able to support the unique needs of these students. Additionally, more than 75% of Deaf and hard-of-hearing (DHH) students are mainstreamed in public school programs. American Sign Language (ASL) interpreters need to be available for these students, which Video Remote Interpretation (VRI) makes possible.

The Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) defines “English learner” (EL) as a student aged 3-21 who is enrolled in or preparing to enroll in elementary or secondary school, whose native language is one other than English, and whose difficulties speaking, reading, writing, or understanding English may deny the student the ability to meet State academic standards, achieve academically in classes taught in English, and/or participate fully in society (20 USC 7801).

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

*Source: National Center for Education Studies (NCES)

  1. Spanish, Castillian – 74.8%
  2. Arabic – 2.7%
  3. Chinese – 2.1%
  4. English – 1.9%
  5. Vietnamese – 1.6%
  6. Somali – 0.8%
  7. Russian – 0.7%
  8. Portuguese – 0.7%
  9. Haitian, Haitian Creole – 0.7%
  10. Hmong – 0.6%


Percentage of public school students who were English language learners, by locale (Fall 2017)

The percentage of ELL students was higher for school districts in urban areas. ELL students accounted for an average of 14.7% of total public school enrollment in cities, 9.6% in suburban areas, 6.8% in towns, and 4.1% in rural areas.

Image Source: National Center for Education Statistics (NCES)


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

*Source: National Center for Education Studies (NCES)

  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%

21 states reported percentages of ELL students that were 6.0% or higher, but less than 10.0%. 


How Video Remote Interpreting in Education Settings Can Help

Telelanguage’s platform for Video Remote Interpreting in education settings gives educators on-demand access to professional interpreters 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year. For situations where visual contact with the interpreter is helpful, like distance learning sessions or parent/teacher conferences, a live video interpreter can be easily added to any 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, Deaf, and Hard-of-Hearing students, and their families.

Live video interpreters can be added in seconds to provide language interpretation in educational videos, phone meetings, and live virtual lessons using videoconferencing tools such as Zoom, Skype, Webex or any other virtual learning platform. Telelanguage provides interpreters in 350 spoken languages, and American Sign Language (VRI) to communicate with your students, parents, communities, and staff in need of language interpretation.


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VRI is currently the fastest-growing foreign language service in the country. An on-demand interpretation solution, VRI bridges the gap between telephonic interpreting and on-site interpreting. Benefits of Video Remote Interpreting include:

  • Gain visual support with enhanced accuracy
  • See facial expressions of the interpreter and know they understood
  • Confirm the meaning of non-verbal communication
  • Help the conversation for you, the interpreter and the student/individual
  • Cost-effective. There are no minimum hours or mileage reimbursement needed to gain access to the interpreter.
  • On-demand access
  • Maintains the personal connection of on-site interpreting
  • Can be used for American Sign Language, as well as spoken languages

VRI promotes the highest level of accuracy in interpreting, second only to on-site interpreting. Telelanguage provides HIPAA, HITECH, and ADA compliant VRI services that can be accessed in seconds, available 24/7, 365 days a year. Our interpreters and translators are subject-matter experts with experience interpreting in education settings and will possess the necessary vocabulary specific to the conversation/written material.

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


Common Situations for Video Remote Interpreting in Education:

  • Parent/teacher conferences
  • School board meetings
  • Disciplinary or health meetings
  • Talks with social workers and counselors
  • Reviews of educational needs/progress
  • Planning for the child
  • Distance learning

Public schools utilize education interpreters (and translators) through a language services provider, like Telelanguage, to ensure effective communication and compliance with relevant legislation during the language learning process for students and guardians.

Why Telelanguage?

  • Certified and professional linguists.
  • Translators are subject-matter experts.
  • Support available in 350 languages.
  • Free cultural awareness training and support Materials.
  • Available 24/7, 365 days a year.
  • Flexible rate plans.
  • Free Services Trial Programs
  • Confidentiality Compliance
  • Fastest Connect Times

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.  


Telelanguage believes that all educational institutions should have access to the best-qualified language support. As a leading provider of language interpretation in U.S. schools, our dedicated customer support allows us to create a better interpretation experience for our education clients. Telelanguage has been empowering school systems nationwide to communicate in hundreds of languages since 1991.

Ready to take your language support for LEP students and families to the next level? Telelanguage can help. We provide professional education language services in over 350 languages. Contact us for a free quote or demo.

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

Call Telelanguage today at (855) 294-4204

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