Classroom Interpreting

Classroom Interpreters - Interpreters and Children - Fostering Social Interaction

Interpreter/Student Boundaries

All professionals who work in a school setting must learn how to establish professional boundaries that are supportive and encouraging but maintain an appropriate distance. Because they often work with a single student, educational interpreters have different challenges than the classroom teacher, who typically deals with many students. This close situation can become too close when the educational interpreter becomes too helpful, too friendly, or too motherly. In other words, there are not clear boundaries. There are many factors that can cause an educational interpreter to have challenges knowing where these appropriate boundaries are.

The educational interpreter may not have had training to be able to identify the following:

Healthy Boundaries

Educational interpreters can help create healthy boundaries that encourage a student’s independence and development. In general, the question to ask is what is required and expected from the hearing classmates both in terms of good behavior as well as what is allowed and overlooked. The deaf or hard of hearing student should be treated in a parallel manner. Guidelines to follow include: