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ATA curates articles from around the world as a service for members. ATA members receive these articles in Newsbriefs, an e-newsletter. See full issues of Newsbriefs.

Despite Opposition, Plan Moves Forward for Students in the U.K. to Learn 1,700 Words for General Certificate Language Exams

January 14, 2022

Starting in 2026, students in the U.K. taking the General Certificate of Secondary Education (GCSE) academic qualification exams in Spanish, French, or German will be expected to memorize up to 1,700 frequently used words. The decision is part of a plan by the U.K.’s Department for Education (DFE) to reform the teaching and assessment of…

Los Angeles County Foster Care System to Increase Services in Indigenous Languages

January 12, 2022

The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors unanimously passed a motion directing the Los Angeles Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS) to develop a plan to improve its language services for Indigenous families and to strengthen its Asian Pacific and Native American programs. Under the motion, DCFS would be required to increase interpreting services,…

Pennsylvania Court Rules Out License Suspensions for DUI Test Refusals if Police Don’t Solve Language Barriers First

January 5, 2022

Commonwealth Court of Pennsylvania Judge Patricia McCullough has ruled that the state can no longer continue to suspend drivers’ licenses for refusal to submit to drunk driving tests when there’s an “insurmountable” language barrier supported by substantial evidence. The case stems from a longstanding Pennsylvania law that enforces an automatic one-year license suspension any time…

Detroit Police Reach Out to the Spanish-Speaking Community through Social Media

January 4, 2022

The Detroit Police Department (DPD) announced the launch of a Spanish-language Facebook page and Twitter account as part of an effort to improve communications with the Spanish-speaking community. Second Deputy Chief for Media Relations Rudy Harper said a newscast called DPD TV and on-camera English and Spanish briefings are also planned. “We have an open-door…

PEN Translates Award Winners from 15 Countries Revealed

December 22, 2021

English PEN has named 18 books from 15 countries the winners of this year’s PEN Translates awards, including novels, short story collections, journalism, poetry collections and epic verse, children’s literature, and political writing. English PEN is the founding center of PEN International, a worldwide writers’ association with 145 centers in more than 100 countries. The…

Meta Adds Sign Language Interpreters for Portal Video Calls

December 17, 2021

META (formerly Facebook) now offers video relay services (VRS) on its Portal video calling devices, allowing users to bring English or Spanish American Sign Language (ASL) interpreters into video conversations. The new feature is part of a collaboration with ZP Better Together, a tech firm that makes communication solutions for deaf and hard-of-hearing users. Meta…

New Study Suggests Languages Could Go Extinct at a Rate of One Per Month this Century

December 16, 2021

Based on a new model similar to those used for predicting species loss, a team of biologists, mathematicians, and linguists in Australia has determined that, without effective conservation, language loss will increase five-fold by 2100. According to Lindell Bromham, an evolutionary biologist at Australian National University who led the study, she and her colleagues suspected…

More Than 60,000 Interpreters, Visa Applicants Remain in Afghanistan

December 16, 2021

According to the U.S. Department of State, more than 60,000 Afghan interpreters and others who have applied for visas to seek shelter in the U.S. after working alongside American forces still remain in Afghanistan. This is the first time that the Department of State has provided a number on those left behind since the Afghanistan…

New York City Expands Translation of Special Education Plans, but Parents with Limited English Must Request It

December 1, 2021

New York City officials said a citywide program to centrally translate students’ individualized education programs (IEPs) will become permanent. IEPs outline a student’s individual goals and the services they’re entitled to, such as speech or occupational therapy or a smaller class size with specialized focus. But even as advocates said the centralized process is a…

European Union Young Translators Contest Kicks Off

September 20, 2021

Secondary schools in all European Union (EU) countries can now start enrolling for Juvenes Translatores, the European Commission’s annual translation contest. Participants can translate between any two of the EU’s 24 official languages (i.e., 552 possible language combinations). In last year’s contest, students used 150 different combinations. This year, the topic of the texts that…

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