Captioning for Graduation Season! Enjoy it.

May 17, 2011 Comments Off on Captioning for Graduation Season! Enjoy it.

A CCAC provider member has shared this fantastic report with us (see below), and with her permission, putting it out for the world to see. Inclusion of “real time captioning” is so important for all schools to consider, and do! Captioning can be projected on a large screen with the image of the speaker, or just the real time text. It might be on a screen in one section, or two screens for all to benefit. It might be a newer “LED” screen.

And it might be individual, for the person who requested it alone (delivered on the provider’s laptop, or even on an iphone!). In that case, others don’t know about it. (Since 1 in 7 persons has a hearing difference, it might be best to project any captioning onto a screen when feasible.)

Okay, here’s the report from a professional with great experience:

“…one of my school districts has been using me to do all their graduations for the past 8 years.   They used to use a slew of sign interpreters.  They finally realized that it was more cost-effective to use me and then hire just a few interpreters when the person graduating preferred ASL.   They get the money from a disability fund.  We do about 35 graduations each year back to back.   Usually we are at two locations doing them simultaneously.  This year, though, they’ve decided to do them mostly in one location over a two-week span.

Funny thing is the district that has used me for 8 years isn’t my school district.  It’s in a different city.   My own school district won’t use us because it’s, quote, too expensive.    Two years ago NCRA funded (partially) one of the graduations in my district because there was a deaf student graduating.   Everyone loved it here, but the school district doesn’t want to pay for it….

I know there are lots of schools out there providing captioning (just because of all the captioners I see talking about them) but there are so many schools that aren’t providing captioning (and they really should).   What we’ve found is even if they have great acoustics, there are so many distractions (babies crying – cell phones, etc) that the hearing audience is using the captioning to follow the words.   Also, I recently captioned a graduation.  The keynote speaker was phenomenal.  He received a standing ovation.   As I was walking out through the crowd to get to my car, I heard people saying, “Boy, I sure hope they saved his speech and will post it on the web.”   So I emailed my contact and sent them the script.  They are going to be posting it :-).    If they didn’t have me, they wouldn’t have the script …and one school where I am at sends the captions to the jumbotron and out to TV monitors, but they also send it to their local PBS station so that the station captures and sends the captions, too….”

CCAC sending thanks to Denise!

Review this page also on the CCAC web (, and get in touch via email if you are “doing” this too. Happy alums and families are very important for school good -will, for future fundraising too.



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