ACPS’ newest Language Line resource offers families easier access to interpretation services when they call their student’s school. Language Line Direct Response allows families who speak Spanish, Amharic, Arabic, Farsi and Pashto to contact ACPS with a qualified interpreter already on the phone line. Direct Response is an addition to the existing phone interpreting services that staff use to contact families in more than 100 languages. With more than half of all ACPS families speaking a language other than English, Language Line services can be helpful in a variety of ways, including during registration and parent conferences.
“I am so thrilled that this new service of Language Line Direct for families to contact the school with an interpreter is offered. Thank you, thank you!” said Bridgid, a parent of James K. Polk Elementary School and Francis C. Hammond Middle School students who shared her feedback on the new service.
Families can dial the toll-free Language Line Direct Response number at 1-833-611-1667 and will hear an automated message in their preferred language. After selecting the school from the voice menu, a qualified interpreter joins the call, and then, parents and the interpreter are connected to the school’s front office.
“Language Line Direct Response is another example of the division being inclusive because, thanks to this tool, we are able to communicate with families when we do not speak the same language,” said Language Access Coordinator Victor Espinosa. “This way everybody is able to access the same information, no matter the language they speak.”
ACPS interpretation services are used extensively. Between July 1, 2020, and May 30, 2021, nearly 18,000 calls were completed using traditional Language Line services, representing a 390% increase in calls completed with the Language Line since the 2018-19 school year.