We are pleased to announce the launch of a new translation tool, Microsoft Translator. Our goal is to establish and simplify two-way communication between District staff and parents in languages other than English. We feel confident that Microsoft Translator is the best tool to meet our goal.
Currently, the student registration process includes a Home Language Questionnaire that is completed by all families and reviewed at the school building level. We use the information that is provided to identify families who communicate in languages other than English.
At present, the District utilizes several services to communicate with families and provide translations as needed. Our next step is to introduce a tool that allows parents to initiate contact with the District in their preferred language.
Microsoft Translator is a free app that provides instant translation for both parties in the languages they select. It works as a text messaging service via the app, and includes language-specific keyboards and text-to-speech translation. Microsoft Translator is also available via the web at https://translator.microsoft.com/.
After testing Microsoft Translator across multiple languages, we are confident that it will be a useful tool to facilitate communication between the District and its families. This tool will be used by staff members at the Woodmere Education Center and in the Main Office of each building. In the future we hope to expand its use to department offices and teachers.