American Sign Language Teachers Association's Winter 2017 - 2018
Photo by Anne M. Eagle
Table of Contents
Utah 2017 Conference Report (p. 2 - 3)
Dan Hoffman, Ed.D.
Introducing the Board (p. 4)
Ex-officio/Interim President's Report (p. 5 - 9)
Arlene Garcia, M.A.
Vice President's Report (p. 10 - 11)
Jenny Gough, Ed.D.
Secretary's Report (p. 12)
Raychelle Harris, Ph.D.
Treasurer's Report (p. 13 - 15)
Daniel Heinze, M.A.
Chapters & Regions Director's Report (p. 16-17)
Beatrice Pfaff, M.A.
Professional Development Director's Report (p. 18-19)
Janice Smith Warshaw, Ed.D.
Communications Director's Report (p. 20)
David Martin, M.A.
Advocacy Co-Director's Report (p. 21)
Daniel Gough, Ed.D. & Tim Riker, M.A.
Heritage Co-Director's Report (p. 22 - 23)
Rayburn Boland, Ed.S. & Petra M. Horn-Marsh, Ph.D.
ASLRT 2017 Chair's Report (p. 24 - 25)
Cara Barnett, M.A.
ASL CIA Logo Competition (p. 26)
Camille Jeter-Lorello, M.A.
World Language Director's Report (p. 27 - 31)
Jason E. Zinza, Ph.D.
Evaluation Director's Report (p. 32 - 33)
Amy June Rowley, Ph.D.
National Conference 2019 Chair's Report (p. 34)
Kristine Hall, M.A.
And...Program Advertisements, Newsletter Deadlines & Contributors and Holiday Greetings from the Board! (p. 34 - 39)
For the playlist of the Board's reports, click here
Utah 2017 Conference Report Dan Hoffman, Ed.D.
Dear ASLTA Family,
Thank you all for your support of our National ASLTA Conference: ASL Elevated at Salt Lake City, Utah. We welcomed over 550 participants to our event composed of more than 40 workshops and panel discussions.
Countless of volunteer hours went into creating this conference, and I would like to take this opportunity to give a special thank you to Conference Chair Kim Smith and her dedicated team of committee chairs. We are also thankful to our former National Professional Development Chair Christine M. Kraft, and the National ASLTA board members who served at that time.
PC: Dan Hoffman
Utah 2017 Conference Report
Finally, I wish to offer our sincere gratitude to all of our national, local, and program sponsors for making this event a success. We look forward to working with you again in the future.
On behalf of UTASLTA board members, thank you again for your generous support. We could not have done this without you and look forward to seeing you at next National ASLTA Conference in San Diego, CA from June 30-July 3, 2019!
All the best,
Dan Hoffman, Ed.D
Front row, ASLTA National Board L-R: Andrew Bottoms (Member-at-Large), Brenda Schertz (Chapters), Bill Newell (Treasurer), Christine Multra Kraft (Professional Development), Amy June Rowley (Evaluation), Arlene Garcia (President), Ben Lewis (Secretary), Keri Brooks (Vice President), Jason Zinza (ASL Honor Society). Back row UT-ASLTA Chapter L-R: Dan Hoffman, (Speakers/Workshops), Kim Smith (Conference Chair), Larrysa Martin (Secretary), Kristi Mortensen (Registration), Yvonne Montalette (Volunteers), Duane Kinner (Exhibitions), and David Davenport (Marketing).
Absent but not forgotten: Ben Daniel (Finance), Jamie Hardman (Interpreting), Martin Price (Hospitality), and Samond Bishura (AV Specialist)
*Listed are their positions at the time of the conference
PC: Jamie Hardman
Beatrice Pfaff Chapters & Regions Director
David Martin Communications Director
Amy June Rowley Evaluation Director
Arlene Garcia Ex-Officio/Interim President
Jenny Gough Vice President
Jason Zinza World Language Director
Daniel Gough & Tim Riker Advocacy Co-Directors
Introducing the Board
Rayburn Boland & Petra M. Horn-Marsh Heritage Language Co-Directors
Raychelle Harris Secretary
Kristine Hall 2019 National Conference Chair
Daniel Heinze Treasurer
Janice Smith Warshaw Professional Development Director
(click on the title to see our introductory videos)
Ex-Officio/Interim President's Report Arlene Garcia, M.A.
It is with a deep sense of satisfaction I write this President’s report to share activities, goals, action plans, and successes that has occurred in the past five months since the 2017 National ASLTA Professional Development conference in Salt Lake City, Utah with a record breaking 525 registrants and an expansion of 9 Board Directors to 14. Kudos and HANDS WAVING to Chair Kim Smith and the Utah-ASLTA’s committee as they did an amazing job pulling recent conference together!
While I draw attention to all of activities, goals, action plans, and successes by the organization, as of October 2017, ASLTA Board voted and asked me to be the Interim President for the National ASLTA organization after Elected President Brooks resigned. I am fortunate to have this opportunity to work with 2017 – 2019 ASLTA Board. I can say with confidence that, as a whole, this current ASLTA Board Directors represents the most comprehensive group who will work to improve our organization and the infrastructure of the organization to reflect the fast-growing field of the ASL profession. We are going to be the change we want to see but we can’t do it without our ASLTA active, good standing members and certified members!
With gratitude to every ASLTA Board who has made all of our work, as a volunteer organization, possible as they continue to present strong level of commitment, dedication and loyalty. Without doubt, the efforts from each ASLTA Board member will strengthen our organization but with time, patience, and respect as we continue to serve as an ASLTA Board member. Like what Veditz once said… “As long as we have Deaf people on earth, we will have signs… our beautiful sign language is the noblest gift God has given to Deaf People.”
September 2017: Council on Educating the Deaf (CED) in Washington, DC
October 2017: First ASLTA Board Face-to-Face Meeting in Colorado
November 2017: ASL Round Table (ASLRT) in Indianapolis, Indiana at Indiana School for the Deaf (ISD)
Former President Keri Brooks, Dr. Bobbie Jo Kite, Tawny Holmes, JD and Howard Rosenblum, JD & CEO of NAD
November 2017: American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Language (ACTFL) in Nashville, Tennessee
Interim President Garcia, Heritage Co-Directors, Horn-Marsh & Boland, VP Gough, Chapters Director Pfaff, Evaluation Director Rowley and Rory Osbrink introduce themselves to the ASLRT audience
November 2017: New Zealand Sign Language Conference
ASL attendees gather for a picture in front of ACTFL banner
From L-R, back: D. Gough, Hall, Zinza. Middle: Smith Warshaw, Rowley, Boland, Riker. Front: Martin, Harris, Garcia, J. Gough and Heinze. Missing - Pfaff. PC: Random passerby
PC: Jason Zinza
PC: Kester Horn-Marsh
PC: Benjamin Lewis
PC: ACTFL Photographer
ASLTA's Goals & Action Plans
ASLTA Board’s Goals:
1. Creating bilingual Deaf-centric bylaws 2. Revisiting past board and member decisions and why or how those decisions weren’t reflected in bylaws or in bylaw revisions 3. Having meeting minutes sent out to members in ASL and English as soon as they are reviewed and approved 4. Communicate with members more often and through various avenues 5. Continued consulting from Joshua Beckman, former parliamentarian for ASLTA
ASLTA Board’s Action Plans:
1. Update Information, Policy, Procedure, & Guidelines (IPPG)
2. Expand Chapters & Regions Model & Guidelines
3. Transition to New Website Host & Expand Website Usage
4. Organize and offer ASL Literature Online Course
5. Conference 2019 Site Visit and Board Meeting
6. Finalize ASLRT & ASLTA MOU
7. Create incentives for members who serve on committees
8. Start National ASLTA Professional Development Conference Call for Proposals
9. Announce New Logo Design Competition for Deaf High School Students.
10. Archive the ASLTA Facebook group
The board is all in a circle with hands in middle overlapping each other; cheering, "ASLTA Onwards!"
PC: Welfie by David Martin
ASLTA Board Accomplishments
10. Review Strategic planning goals, determine progress and next steps
11. ASLRT as part of ASLTA organization (MOU pending)
12. Create official ASLTA organization Facebook Page, Twitter and Instagram
13. New Website host & expand ASLTA Website
14. Visit/Tour Rocky Mountain Deaf School (RMDS) in Lakewood, Colorado
15. Volunteer ASL Storytelling with elementary students at Indiana School for the Deaf (ISD) in Indianapolis, Indiana
Mark Ramirez, social justice trainer, presents to the Board
The board in front of RMDS sign
September - December
1. Attend Board online meetings – 2x/month for 2+ hours each
2. Represent ASLTA at conferences (CED, ASLRT, ACTFL, New Zealand)
3. Gathered for Board Face-to-Face Weekend Meeting/Retreat
4. Complete ASLTA History workshop with Leslie C. Greer, Past President
5. Underwent Social Justice Training by Mark Ramirez
6. Listened to Leslie C. Greer & Jessica Bentley-Sassman, CIT Board members, give a workshop on Running an Effective Meeting
7. Revised & Developed ASLTA Board’s Roles & Responsibilities
8. Review Bylaws and identify areas of improvement
9. Review Budget and identify areas for cost savings measures
PC: Arlene Garcia
PC: Amy Novotny
ASLTA Strategic Priorities
ASLTA board members in front of RMDS' timeline and history created by students
1. Constant communication with our Members through Information & Member Center via ASLTA’s Website, Quarterly Newsletters, eBlast Announcements & Calls for Action
2. Explore becoming ASL Professionals Association with greater emphasis on three focus areas: Heritage Languages, World Languages and Deaf Studies
3. Evaluate & maintain long-term financial oversight and fiscal stability/growth
4. Explore possible partnerships with sister organizations (e.g. NAD, CIT, ASLRT, ASDC, ACTFL, SASL)
5. Revitalize chapters & regions; increase membership & explore possibility of a brick & mortar office with an Executive Director
6. Updated Evaluation & Certification system and promotion of ‘ASLTA Certification’ as the gold standard for a variety of ASL and Deaf Studies specializations
7. Updated Bylaws, policies, procedures and guidelines for positions and actions/events
VP J. Gough shares stories with Indiana School for the Deaf (ISD) elementary students
PC: Barbara Wingfield
Vice President's Report Jenny Gough, Ed.D.
Hello, ASLTA members. This is Dr. Jenny Gough. I am your National ASLTA Vice President. In my report as Vice President, I want to share about six different topics from July 2017 until now. These topics are regarding our organization, our progress, and our future projects:
1) Bylaws and Infrastructure: The first video was released via e-Blast last October. Both Joshua Beckman and I explained about the bylaws and infrastructure and how they are streamlined.
2) 2015 Business Meeting Minutes: Unfortunately, at the 2015 National Professional Development Conference (NPDC) in Minnesota, the 2013-2015 National ASLTA Board members did not have reviewers to review the business meeting minutes prior to the conference before voting the minutes as read. Click here to review.
3) 2017 Business Meeting Minutes: The business meeting minutes from the 2017 National ASLTA NPDC in Utah were submitted to the three reviewers who were at the meeting to ensure accuracy. I received feedback from two reviewers, waiting on the third. After I receive their feedback, I will submit the final copy of business meeting minutes prior to the 2019 NPDC’s business meeting for review.
4) Bylaws Committee: The bylaws committee worked very hard and made good progress on revising and updating the bylaws. We focused on revising the mission statement and decided to add a vision statement. In addition, we added a new social justice framework. We also expanded the information about new ASLTA board positions in the IPPG as well as clarified some policies and guidelines. When the draft revision is approved by the board, I will share a copy of the draft bylaws for your review before the 2019 NPDC.
Vice President's Report, cont'd.
5) ASLTA Members Survey: The ASLTA board worked on developing a survey. The purpose of the survey is to gather statistics on members’ demographics, and to seek members' input on workshops/ training, use of ASL curriculum, ASLTA media communications, etc. Please click here to complete this important survey.
6) ASLTA Website: The board investigated pricing plans and agreed to change the web host and server for the ASLTA website to save on costs. We will also expand the members’ features on the website. You will have access to ASLTA member database, discussion board, and many different features. You will see the change soon in the next few months. If you notice some features are still under construction, it is because we are still working on the changes.
In closing, I look forward to sharing more information with you in the next newsletter. Thank you.
This is a previously disseminated video report (October 2017) with captions discussing the bylaw issues along with Joshua Beckman's expert consultation and input
Secretary's Report Raychelle Harris, Ph.D.
Hello ASLTA! I'm Raychelle, your secretary. First, I'd like to apologize for the delay in getting our meeting minutes since August out to you all. There were quite a bit of issues regarding formatting and and how the meeting minutes were written the first few months. In October, during the Face-to-Face Board retreat in Colorado Springs, Conference of Interpreter Trainers (CIT) President Leslie Greer and Secretary Jessica Bentley-Sassman gave us all a workshop on Running an Effective Meeting which touched upon many topics, one being the differences between taking minutes for a Business meeting as opposed to a Board meeting.
They also shared their documents with us. They also invited me to observe one of CIT's meetings in November. Those experiences were extremely beneficial for me as a secretary, and with that knowledge, I was able to submit all of the Board meeting minutes from August through November on December 3rd for the board's approval. I hope you enjoy reading through the meeting minutes! [LINK]
While the minutes do not include the countless discussions (and debates!) the board has had during the biweekly online meetings, I want to reassure you all that the board has done quite a lot since we were voted in office, and my hat goes off to the board for their amazing endurance, hard work and dedication to ASLTA as an organization. I also thank you all for your awesome support as members. I wish you all a safe, healthy and fabulous 2018!
Treasurer's Report Daniel Heinze, M.A.
My name is Daniel Heinze and I am your National ASLTA’s Treasurer. As you may know, Treasurers in general remain busy daily maintaining accurate records of all financial transactions and managing the membership database.
From Treasurer to Treasurer
I want to sent a heartfelt gratitude to Bill and Bev Newell for their 40 years of contribution and support to ASLTA. As a new Treasurer, Bill patiently and willingly provided mentorship and training for the first few months. I am also grateful for Bev Newell, Bill's wife, who served as a bookkeeper. Bev's resignation became effective as of September 2017. After her resignation, we welcomed Maria Nikolaou, a RIT graduate in accounting, as our new bookkeeper. In September, Bill and I flew to Rochester to work with Maria and undergo training and transition from Bill and Bev to me and Maria. Thank you, Bill and Bev, for all you've done those years, and for the smooth transition.
ASLTA’s 2017 Conference
The 2017 conference has the largest member attendance in ASLTA’s history. The 2017 National Conference earned $36,380.63 in revenue and as agreed, 25% of that ($9,095.16) has been donated to Utah ASLTA chapter for their amazing dedication in planning and executing a successful conference! We are looking forward to see you at 2019’s national conference in San Diego!
Here's some exciting news: We are in process of transferring to a new, economical membership database, as our previous database was expensive, glitchy and not stable. That means some people missed out on the newsletter and membership due reminders. With the new membership system we look forward to a more stable and consistent database communications.
ASLTA Board Retreat
We wanted to share our gratitude to Arlene, our interim president, for hosting the board retreat at her place in Colorado Springs. We managed to save over $2,000 dollars in hotel costs by staying at Arlene’s warm home instead!
It is my pleasure to serve you all. If you have questions, please feel free to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Happy holidays!
Chapters & Regions Director's Report Beatrice Pfaff, M.A.
Hello ASLTA members, Chapters, and Board.
I wish you all a pleasant holiday! My name is Beatrice Pfaff and I'm from Indiana. I am the Chapters/Regions Director. I am looking forward working with you for the next two years, 2017 through 2019.
My goal is to be accessible to discuss chapter issues such as regional conferences and chapter guidelines and so on. My text is 317-531-2547 or email me at email@example.com.
We have approximately 21 chapters in all. Some chapters did not renew their membership (due September 1) and will need to renew. It is not too late. Please pay $35 for the annual dues online at www.aslta.org.
Please update the profile of your Chapter including updating your contact information. Send your updated bylaws to firstname.lastname@example.org. The updated information will assist me in contacting chapters and preparing for regional conferences this coming summer 2018.
Chapters & Regions Director's Report
We have four regional chapter representatives. They are:
Region 1 - Brenda Schertz (email@example.com)
Region 2 - Bryan Bowen and Maura Hencker (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Region 3 - Bo Clements (email@example.com)
Region 4 - Barbara Hayes (firstname.lastname@example.org)
The chapter representatives and chapter presidents met in October and again in November. We will meet again in January to determine the winning bid for the upcoming 2018 Regional Conference.
It has been and continues to be a pleasure to serve you all. Happy holidays!
Professional Development Director's Report Janice Smith Warshaw, Ed.D.
Hello, this is Dr. Janice Smith Warshaw. I am your National ASLTA Professional Development (PD) Director. I would like to share with you some tidbits which have happened since I first became PD director.
In late August and early September, the ASLTA President, Vice President and I met with Kristine Hall, the 2019 National Professional Development Conference (NPDC) Chair, and her conference committee issues regarding the conference site and costs. We signed a memo of understanding (MOU) between the ASLTA - Southern California Chapter and the National ASLTA organization. After signing, they were able to share an official announcement about the 2019 National Professional Conference in San Diego, California. You will see upcoming announcements on social media. It is a very exciting time!
The 2021 NPDC Co-Chairs, Arlon Nash and Lori Woods, from the ASLTA – Ohio Chapter and I met to start planning for the 2021 conference. Both co-chairs are looking for a site in Columbus, Ohio, for the 2021 NPDC. The next step is for me to submit a revised copy of ASLTA Conference Planning Guidelines.
In closing, I'd like to share a quote by Oprah Winfrey: “Cheers to a new year and another chance for us to get it right.”
ASL Excluded from
2016 AAAS Report
In late October, Dr. Jason Zinza, World Languages Director discovered a report where ASL which was deliberately excluded from the 2016 American Academy of Arts and Science (AAAS) report on world languages in the USA (see pie chart). Dr. Zinza stated that AAAS and American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL) collaborated on this project. He was alarmed to see ASL excluded because he felt there was no academic reason for it. Dr. Zinza proposed to find a way of how to advocate for ASL's inclusion in the AAAS report. On November 15, Tim Riker (Advocacy Co-Director), Dr. Zinza and I attended the ACTFL conference in Nashville, Tennessee. A day before the conference, there was an Assembly of Delegates (AoD), invitation-only summit of ACTFL’s organizational members, which brings together representatives from state, regional, and national language organizations as well as other leaders, including ACTFL’s Board of Directors. One of their meeting agenda topics was “Moving Forward with the AAAS Report - Advocacy and Legislative Panel.” After the panel discussion, we met with three leaders: Marty Abbott, Executive Director of ACTFL; Dr. William
Rivers, Executive Director of Joint National Committee for Languages – National Council for Languages and International Studies (JNCL-NCLIS); and Matt Schlesinger, Policy Associate, The Sheridan Research Group.
We expressed our deep concerns about AAAS’s Statistical Report which was released in 2016 and excluded ASL from the report. Dr. Rivers agreed and commented that he will make sure to make some corrections and amend the statistical report. In the end, our meeting with Ms. Abbott, Dr. Rivers and Mr. Schlesinger was productive and educational. They know now to make sure that ASL is recognized and is considered as equally important as other foreign languages. Our job is not done - we have to continue making sure to correct misconceptions about ASL, which is the third most studied foreign language in the U.S.
Communications Director's Report David Martin, M.A.
Be sure to follow us on all three social media accounts below: Twitter, Instagram and Facebook. The more followers, the more likes, the more louder we can become as advocates and allies for ASL and sign languages in the United States and Canada!
Use the following hashtags when posting about ASL:
ASLTA organization: #ASLTA
ASLTA national conferences: #ASLTA2019, #ASLTA2021, #ASLTA2023 and so on!
[This video is also posted on our social media accounts; and refers to the Facebook group closing (12/31) and the transition to the new Facebook page]
Advocacy Co-Directors' Report
Hello, my name is Dr. Daniel Gough. Timothy Riker and I are your Advocacy Co-Directors. We started out by developing a position description for ASLTA’s Advocacy Director.
Secondly, I attended New Zealand Sign Language Teachers Association Professional Conference. I presented about ASLTA organization infrastructure. The benefits of a professional organization that includes components such as current trends in Sign Language instruction, professional networking, and sign language teaching certification were discussed. A working relationship between the New Zealand Sign Language Tutors Association (NZSLTA) and ASLTA was developed.
We are seeking volunteers to help with a committee to work on recognizing and identifying various Signed Languages in North America. If you are interested, email us at email@example.com. We look forward to serving you as your co-advocacy directors.
Daniel Gough, Ed.D.
Tim Riker, M.A.
PC: Susie Ovens
Heritage Language Co-Directors' Report
We as Heritage Language Co-Directors want to share two exciting information with you all.
We had a successful American Sign Language Round Table (ASLRT) gathering in Indianapolis at Indiana School for the Deaf (ISD). There was an excellent rapport between ASLRT coordinators and ASLTA board members in discussing the future merging of both organizations.
There were several ASLTA board members who came to ASLRT (myself and Petra, as well as Interim President Arlene Garcia, Evaluation Director Amy June Rowley, and Chapters & Regions Director Beatrice Pfaff). We collaboratively gave a presentation on our proposal for ASLRT to join ASLTA and what the infrastructure would look like. The ASLRT participants gave their blessing for ASLRT to join ASLTA.
Rayburn Boland, Ed.S.
Petra M. Horn-Marsh, Ph.D.
Also, the most coveted National ASL K-12 standards through Clerc Center will be released in January 2018, which will offer guidance to the work of ASL Curriculum, Instruction and Assessment (ASL CIA). ASL CIA is a group of ASL teachers and specialists who meet twice every year for the purposes of development, revision, and furthering curriculum, instruction and assessment in ASL as a heritage language of deaf and hard-of-hearing students.
Please be on the look out for updates in the near future on the next ASLRT in 2018 at Little Rock, Arkansas! If you have any questions or need more information about ASL as our heritage language, please feel free to email firstname.lastname@example.org.
ASLRT 2017 Chair Report
Cara Barnett, M.A.
Indiana Deaf School (ISD), along with their famous Hoosier hospitality, hosted 11th ASL Round Table (ASLRT) November 8-10, 2017 with 97 people in attendance. ASL teachers, specialists and school administrators from approximately 48 deaf schools in America and Canada came to ASLRT at Indianapolis, Indiana. Rosa Lee, ISD alumna, gave a sensational kick-off performance with her one-woman show full of Deaf, Black-Deaf, Deaf American storytelling, poems and songs.
For two days, following the theme, "Maintenance, Measurement and Mastery”, presentations and discussions focused on the shift from using term L1 to Heritage Language, how to stick with the ASL framework, ASL curriculum as one of the transformative agents, Deaf students of color, how to elevate our roles as ASL teacher/specialist, and to think and plan our teaching in ASL. The attendees agreed that it is high time to elevate and expand the Heritage Language framework for Deaf students in Deaf education.
ASLRT 2017 Chair Report, cont'd
Due to the prevalence of language deprivation in the developmental experiences of most of Deaf students, the attendees also agreed that meeting their urgent language acquisition and development needs is of paramount importance in ASL instruction and planning. During the conference, supporting Deaf Ecosystem, ISD ASLRT team gave away over one thousand dollars in giveaways from Deaf businesses to conference attendees. Another highlight of the conference included the use of Certified Deaf Interpreters to make the conference presentation and discussion smooth. ISD students themselves played a role in ASLRT by doing the introductions and showing appreciation of presenters for their time presenting at ASLRT conference.
ASL CIA Logo Competition
Camille Jeter-Lorello, M.A.
World Language Director's Report
First, I want to share how much I enjoy working with you and for ASLTA. It’s a wonderful experience.
In September, I represented ASLTA at the CED (Council on Education of the Deaf) Board meeting. CED accredits Deaf Education programs, and ASLTA is involved to ensure ASL proficiency standards are addressed in their work. This benefits Deaf children, as well as those who major in Deaf Education, which means more ASL teaching jobs. It was a privilege to represent ASLTA with former President Keri Brooks, and advocate for more stringent proficiency standards.
In November, I represented ASLTA at the ACTFL conference. There are two separate reports in this newsletter addressing that experience on pages 19 and 29 - 30.
I’ve also been working on the national ASL standards committee. I’ve been working with ACTFL to arrange a trainer to work with this group of people who volunteered to serve on the committee and update the ASL standards. I hope to have a major announcement regarding this effort soon. Additionally, I’ve been working on the ASL Can-Do Statements project. That project is on hold while ACTFL makes some adjustments to its requirements, which should be complete by February 2018. As soon as I’m given the green light to move forward with that, I’ll share information with ASLTA members.
The issue is that ASL teachers at IB schools are reporting being marginalized, excluded, or even terminated since IB schools require students to take an international language. ASL is not viewed as an international language, so there is an issue to be resolved. Can IB consider ASL to be an international language, or find another solution? I will be asking people to join a committee to work with me and address this issue. Watch for a video from me about this soon!
The second issue also addresses high school needs, primarily Advanced Placement (AP). Parents, school administrators, and others have embraced the AP concept. The problem is that there is no AP exam for ASL, which means we are left out. Strong students are encouraged to take spoken languages, and weak students end up taking ASL. This is a problem that needs to be addressed, and a committee to focus on solutions will be coming soon.
It’s been a lot of work this fall, but I’ve enjoyed every minute!
Now, I’d like to address two new projects initiated at the recent ASLTA conference in Salt Lake City. The first has to do with International Baccalaureate (IB) programs, which some of you are familiar with if you teach high school. IB is a specialized program for high schools that is growing in popularity, that has very stringent requirements.
ASLTA Representation at ACTFL
Recently, I represented ASLTA at the ACTFL (American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages) conference. ASLTA and ACTFL have a long-standing collaboration, and ASLTA sends representatives to the annual conference in order to obtain information to be shared with ASLTA.
This year, the ASLTA Board sent three representatives to the ACTFL conference: Myself, Janice Smith-Warshaw (Professional Development), and Tim Riker (Advocacy Co-Director). What an experience! With over 6,000 attendees from many different languages and groups, and over 800 workshops to choose from, it was memorable. Participating in the conference wasn’t just fun and games though!
Jason Zinza, Ph.D.
The first day, ASLTA was represented at the Assembly of Delegates (AoD) meeting, which is where representatives from various language groups get information to share with members about ACTFL’s plans and initiatives. While there, Tim, Janice, and myself met with directors to lodge a complaint about ASL being omitted from an important report. You can read about that in Janice’s report.
I would like to share my appreciation for other ASL teachers who also attended the AoD session: Tricia McCarthy (high school teacher from New York), and Christine Multra-Kraft
(teacher and interpreter trainer from Indiana). It was great to have so many people making ASL visible to other attendees and serve as a reminder that ASL is as important as spoken languages. The next session was attended by myself, Janice, and Deanne Bray. This session was the SCB (Standards Collaboration Board) meeting, whose mission is to improve standards for all languages, whether signed or spoken. As you know, ASLTA published national ASL standards, but that’s not the end. The standards are required to be updated, modified, and re-examined continually, with attendees discussing problems, challenges, and solutions.
ASLTA Representation at ACTFL, cont'd
It was a thrill and a privilege to represent ASLTA, especially with the other ASL teachers attending ACTFL, and making sure ASL is visible to the field. Remember how I mentioned more than 6,000 people attended the ACTFL conference with more than 800 workshops to choose from? Can you guess how many presentations were ASL-related? Out of the many workshops available, only two were related to ASL! I wish more ASL teachers presented at the conference.
Every night, ASL teachers attending ACTFL - Deaf, hearing, and CODA - gathered to share experiences, new ideas, new content, and discuss the day. All of us expressed the desire to see more ASL-related presentations at ACTFL. So why don’t you present?!
How? Go to www.actfl.org and click on the “Conference” button. Enter the information, and send it off. You never know! You might be selected to present!I
Here are some tips:
Have clear objectives
Focus on current issues
Help other teachers (not just ASL teachers), since other language teachers might attend your session and learn something they can use in their classroom
Don’t tell, but SHOW and DO
If you’re Deaf, don’t worry, ACTFL will provide interpreters. If you’re hearing, present in ASL and turn off that voice, to show other teachers what ASL is all about! It’s worth it!
Next ACTFL conference: New Orleans, November 16-18, 2018
Deadline for submissions: January 12. Good luck!
PC: Patricia McCarthy
Evaluation Director's Report
We have been focusing on getting the evaluation platform up for the new evaluation system this past fall. A few issues we dealt with included evaluator training for using GoReact, as well as learning what to ask for from candidates when submitting work to GoReact for us to evaluate. That has taken time and we look forward to making this process more speedy and efficient in the future. We also focused on helping Professional level certified members transition to Master level if they were up for renewals. Many people still need to be transitioned over from the Professional Level to the Master level, and that is a work in progress which will continue as members approach their renewals.
This Spring the Evaluation office will be focusing on contacting people who hold Qualified level certification to see how they want to transition. There are several possible options for these Qualified certification holders so this will be an ongoing process and will require a lot of one-on-one meetings.
Happy Holidays and Happy New Year!
Amy June Rowley, Ph.D.
Tribute to the Newells
On behalf of the Board of Directors, we would like to recognize that Bill Newell has contributed over four decades of service to ASLTA. He spearheaded and established the ASLTA evaluation and certification process and served as it's director for several years. He also served on ASLTA when it was first called Sign Instructor's Guidance Network and was a board member when it was proposed to change the name from SIGN to ASLTA.
During the last few years, he revamped the treasurer's position from one where each program had to budget and control their own funding to a streamlined centralized database that oversees many accounts. Bev Newell was efficient and her role as a bookkeeper really allowed for the ASL Honor Society and Evaluation Programs as well as the membership success of ASLTA to be clear and organized. They both left us with a lot of history and years of contribution and we couldn't have arrived where we are without their help. If you see them, please wish them well with their retirement!
National 2019 Conference Chair's Report
Hello all! I am very excited to tell you that we have established a wonderful committee, with chairpersons ready and eager to get started on the planning for the conference! The conference will take place in San Diego at the Hyatt Manchester Hotel, right on the coast from June 29 – July 3, 2019!
We are really excited to make this a memorable conference. It is our goal to launch a youth program prior to the conference. This is definitely something new for ASLTA and this is one of the steps in solidifying our partnership with ASLRT. If you happen to have any ideas or know anyone who would love to be a part of this exciting project, give us a wave!
Our website is up and will continue to be updated. www.aslta2019.com. We hope to launch registration soon. We are also recruiting sponsors to give support to the conference and its mission to provide professional development for you. If you know any potential sponsors, please let us know at email@example.com!
Kristine Hall, M.A.
Click on the photo above to visit their page!
Click here to browse the Faculty positions available
For more information, contact firstname.lastname@example.org
(For full transcript/image description, please go to YouTube description box)
Want to submit a bilingual article for the next issue?
Want to advertise your program, product or job vacancy? (inquire as to our fees)
Want to share your Chapter/Region's news & photos?
Send your material to email@example.com
Spring: Feb 15th
Summer: May 15th
Fall: August 15
Winter: December 15th
American Sign Language Teachers Association
Holiday Wishes from the
ASL Teachers Association
Arlene Garcia, M.A.
Jenny Gough, Ed.D.
Raychelle Harris, Ph.D.
Daniel Heinze, M.A.
Chapters & Regions Director
Beatrice Pfaff, M.A.
Professional Development Director
Janice Smith Warshaw, Ed.D.
David Martin, M.A.
Tim Riker, M.A.
Daniel Gough, Ed.D.
Heritage Language Co-Directors
Rayburn Boland, Ed.S.
Petra Horn-Marsh, Ph.D.
World Language Director
Jason Zinza, Ph.D.
Amy June Rowley, Ph.D.
2019 National Conference Chair
Kristine Hall, M.A.