District enhances Language Assistance Plan for parents with limited English proficiency

The Wake County Public School System has entered into a voluntary resolution with the U.S. Department of Education Office for Civil Rights (OCR) to resolve a complaint filed against the district in regard to services for parents with limited English proficiency.

The complaint was filed on June 12, 2012. In lieu of a protracted investigation, WCPSS and the OCR have reached this voluntary resolution based on the mutual interest of both organizations to provide effective language services for parents with limited English proficiency.

WCPSS has taken numerous measures to further its Language Assistance Plan to ensure meaningful access to services for persons with limited English proficiency.

“We really appreciate the thought and effort that the district put into the development of the Language Assistance Plan and the district’s obvious commitment to improving access to information for its LEP parents,” said Martha Russo, attorney for the U.S. Department of Education, Office for Civil Rights (OCR).

Enhancements to the access of language assistance services include:

  • The collection of data, through Home Language Surveys and other measures, to identify parents with limited English proficiency, and which languages they speak;
  • Greater communication about the availability of free translation and interpretation services, including the establishment of a phone line operated by fluent Spanish-speaking staff to respond to requests for language assistance;
  • The availability of updated rosters of parents who have limited English proficiency for teachers and school staff;
  • Dozens of educational documents that have been translated to additional languages
  • The continued availability of interpreters for parent meetings, including those regarding Individualized Education Programs (IEP) and assistance for Students with Disabilities (Section 504).

All language services will be provided by qualified translators and interpreters in person and telephonically. These functions will be managed by the Office of Translation and Interpretation Services.

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