2021-22 Connections for Home Language Interpreters

WI FACETS is actively seeking partnerships with 3 CESAs to conduct the following training during the 2021-22 school year.  Please check back for updates.

Training for Home Language Interpreters: Supporting Families Through the Special Education Process

For those seeking training for home language interpreters for families at IEP meetings, Wisconsin DPI has partnered with WI FACETS, LEAs, and other organizations to develop a one day training for home language interpreters who interpret for families at IEP meetings. The training provides increased awareness of state and federal laws, regulations and policies related to the educational rights of students who receive special education through an IEP and who may also be English Language Learners. The training also provides increased knowledge of legal responsibilities and requirements related to translation and interpretation of special education, terms, concepts, tools and resources for interpreters. Finally, the training supports improved skills to handle common ethical considerations while interpreting IEP meetings.


WI FACETS encourages districts to participate in the following Connections Series for Home Language Interpreters and Translators. This Network of Interpreters are a fabulous resource for continued professional development to better serve Wisconsin Families and Communities.

OCTOBER 6, 2021 I NOVEMBER 23, 2021 I APRIL 12, 2022
9:00 AM - 3:00 PM

During the 2021-22 school year the Interpreter and Translator Connections Series will meet three times with ongoing online collaboration throughout the year. With your participation we look forward to continuing to build and expand this network of district interpreters and translators!

● The goal of this network is to meet the needs of interpreters and translators in K-12 schools.
● Members of this network will have the opportunity to learn about and discuss current topics and also network and resource share with others in the field from throughout the region.

To register for the Interpreter Translator Connection Series, please click here.

2021 Resources for Interpreters

Access the list of resources in a Word document (click here)

Click to jump to a specific section: Resources for Interpreters | Resources for Families and Educators | ELL (English Language Learner) Resources | Additional Websites & Resources


Resources for Interpreters

Information guiding families and school professionals on best practices for virtual IEP meetings
Created by a workgroup of Spanish speaking stakeholders through the Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP), this glossary provides interpreters with common special education terms and a translation in Spanish.

Providing Language Assistance to Parents
This guidance developed by WDPI Special Education Team is intended to assist public schools in meeting their obligations to limited English proficient (LEP) parents, or parents with communications-related disabilities, who are parents of public school students and includes guidance on translation of IEPs and interpretation.

Refugee Children in U.S. Schools: A Toolkit for Teachers and School Personnel
This document developed by BRYCS, a project supported by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, outlines
federal requirements of interpretation and translation.

Interpreter Manual for Special Education Mediation
Developed by the Wisconsin Special Education Mediation System (WSEMS), this document explains the Mediation process and legal requirements in relation to mediation meetings between families and schools.

Let’s Talk: Holding IEP Meetings with ELL Families and Interpreters
From Minnesota Department of Education, a brochure on best practice ideas before, during and after IEP meetings which require interpreters.

Green Bay Bilingual ESL Special Education Team (BEST) Handbook
This handbook has been developed as a guide to help Green Bay Area Public School staff understand the complexities when addressing the learning needs of English Language Learners (ELLs) who are struggling in the mainstream classroom.

Understanding Latino Families, Implications for Family Education
(Skogrand, L. Hatch, D., and Singh, A. 2005.) An article which may assist educators with welcoming, honoring, and connecting with Latino families.  

Speech and Language Assessment Linguistically Culturally Diverse: Spanish Speaking
IEP teams are often unfamiliar with the characteristics of linguistically and culturally diverse (LCD) evaluations. The purpose of this guide is to provide IEP teams with a basic understanding and resources to appropriately differentiate language impairment from typical language development and second language acquisition.

Frequently Asked Questions on Confidentiality (Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction)
This document reviews frequently asked questions in relation to education and confidentiality.


Resources for Families and Educators

Equity Through Language Access: Best Practices for Collaborating with Interpreters
Learn how teachers, administrators, bilingual staff and families can collaborate with interpreters in order to ensure students have equitable access to their education.

Back to School Prep Sheet for Parents
Preparing for an IEP meeting during COVID-19.

Procedural Safeguards (Available in Spanish/English/Hmong)
This document is required to be given to all parents of students with disabilities at least once a year. 

Introduction to Special Education (English/En Espanol/Hmong)
Video on YouTube in English (with subtitles/captions). This brochure and video were made for families to explain special education and was highlighted in this training.

Communication Options for Families (English/Spanish/Hmong)
This document explains the options families have if they disagree with a decision of a school.

Special Education in Plain Language (English/En Espanol)
This booklet explains the laws and regulations of special education with a focus on what families need to know and what the laws mean.

Opening Doors to Self-Determination Skills (English/En Espanol)                             
Setting and achieving goals helps students grow. Knowing their strengths and addressing their weaknesses is important as students prepare for life after high school. As students move through school and toward adulthood, they go through a process of considering who they are and who they wish to become. Students can work with counselors, parents, and teachers as they work with this resource.

A New Beginning for Ana and Her Family
Families who have a child with a developmental disability begin a journey that is often different and less familiar than raising other children and from that of their extended family and neighbors. It may be more difficult for families to envision their child's future as full and contributing members of their community, and it can also be difficult for community members to understand and value people with disabilities. The story of Ana and her family is designed as a guide for what is possible with the commitment of family, friends and a welcoming community.

Special Education Acronyms
A list of common special education acronyms and terms.


ELL (English Language Learner) Resources

Family and Caregiver Handbooks for Students New to Wisconsin and U.S. Schools (English / Spanish)
CESA 2 Immigrant Children and Youth Grant network participants created this plain language guide for families and caregivers. This is a simple text document for families to understand how schools in Wisconsin generally operate.

Dual Language Learners with Disabilities: Supporting Young Children in the Classroom
In this IRIS STAR Legacy Module, you'll meet Mrs. Raymond, a third-year teacher at Russell Early Childhood Center. Mrs. Raymond has an inclusive classroom-that is, a classroom for young children both with and without disabilities-and one in which her students speak many languages other than English.

Tools and Resources for Ensuring Meaningful Communication with Limited English Parents
This is the tenth chapter of the English Learner Tool Kit, which is intended to help state and local education agencies (SEAs and LEAs) meet their obligations to English Learners (ELs). This tool kit should be read in conjunction with the U.S. Department of Education Office for Civil Rights’ (OCR) and the U.S. Department of Justice’s (DOJ) Dear Colleague Letter on “English Learner Students and Limited English Proficient Parents,” published in January 2015, which outlines SEAs’ and LEAs’ legal obligations to ELs under civil rights laws and other federal requirements. The Dear Colleague Letter can be found here.

Tips for Working with Telephone Interpreters

Culturally Responsiveness for Working in SchoolsAlaska

Public Health Toolkit for Translating

Interpreters in Healthcare – California

WI DPI Qualifications and Guidance


Additional Websites and Resources

Special Education Model Forms – WI DPI
These model forms can be used to help families understand the main parts of IEPs.
Forms are available in English and Spanish. 

This website has many resources for educators in relation to English Language Learners.

ACCESS for ELL Page Resources
Parent Brochure/En Espanol/Hmong
This WDPI site provides information on federal and state laws that students identified as English Language Learners (ELs) be assessed annually to determine their level of English language proficiency (ELP) and ensure that they are progressing in achieving full English proficiency. 

This website is in both English and Spanish (can switch back and forth) and has information for families, educators, administrators, libraries about ELL resources.

Wisconsin Special Education Mediation System
Includes videos on mediation and facilitated IEPs, dispute resolution, and includes the WSEMS interpreter manual. How to Conduct Friendly and Productive IEP Meetings is a webinar developed by WSPEI, WI FACETS, and WSEMS and located on the WSEMS web site. This webinar is a trainer of trainer on how to conduct IEP meetings that promote collaboration and reduce conflict.

Minnesota Department of Education
This site has many documents including guidance on ethics and standards of practice for educational interpreters, holding IEP meetings with English Language Learners, and an English-Hmong and English-Somali Dictionary of Special Education.

Serving on Groups that Make Decisions: A Guide for Families/Sirviendo en Grupos que Toman Decisiones: Una Guía para Familias
This guidebook is in English and Spanish and was created by WI FACETS and WSPEI to assist families within knowing how to serve on decision making groups. 

Disability Rights Enforcement Highlights
This guidance document from the Office for Civil Rights (2012) outlines some of the laws and regulations in relation to American with Disabilities (ADA) and Section 504.

My Child has Been Expelled, Now What? | Mi hijo ha sido expulsado, ¿Y ahora qué?
This brochure from the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction (WI DPI) outlines the process parents can take if their child has been expelled from public school.

Growing Wisconsin Readers (English/Spanish/Hmong)
This web site has many resources for families in relation to literacy and early childhood. Just click on the link at the top to find resources/information in Spanish/Hmong/English.

Promise Grant Fliers and Resources
A variety of information about Wisconsin’s Promise grant is available via request by contacting the Promise Grant web page: Wisconsin Promise.

Pupil Nondiscrimination | Ley de No-Discriminación del Alumnado de Wisconsin
In Hmong
This brochure from the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction (WDPI) outlines the process parents can take if they feel their child is being discriminated against based on factors such as sex, race, religion, creed, age, national origin, ancestry, pregnancy, marital status, parental status, sexual orientation, or disability. Found on the WI DPI Pupil Nondiscrimination website.

Getting Behavior in Shape at Home: by Laura Riffel and Ann Turnbull | Mejorando El Comportamiento en el Hogar: Por Laura Riffel y Ann Turnbull
These resources are provided by MPS for PBIS.