RID to Establish a Separate LLC Testing Entity
If you have additional questions that are not answered in this document, please send them to firstname.lastname@example.org so that we can update the FAQs. Additionally, stay up-to-date with the latest news, announcements, and resources related to testing and certification at https://rid.org/testing-certification-news-library/
The following FAQs were added 12/23/15:
Will one still need to be a member of RID to hold certification?
Currently, RID does not have a category of membership for certified-non-members. To create such a category would require a Bylaws change, voted on and passed by 2/3 of the voting membership. In other words, the members would have to decide if they wanted certification extended to individuals who are not members of RID.
Article IV. Section 2.
- The Board may add certificates to or add or change categories for membership in RID only with prior approval of 2/3 of the eligible membership voting on the issue.
Members retain the right to determine the categories of membership within RID and what certifications RID awards. If such certified-non-member category were created, those individuals without membership, would not have a vote within RID. Currently, only certified members are able to vote on certification matters.
For several years, RID has been exploring the idea of volunteer membership and will be presenting several options for member consideration and possible vote in the coming year.
Since the EIPA is already given by an outside entity, what is the rationale for continuing the moratorium for awarding Ed:K-12 certifications? Does the educational interpreting field have to wait with the rest of the interpreting field while the new LLC is formed and new tests are created?
Interpreters do not have to wait to take the EIPA exam – it is still being administered by Boys Town, and more information on that test can be found here: http://www.classroominterpreting.org/eipa/.
The moratorium is on RID’s granting of the Ed:K-12 credential for individuals who pass the EIPA performance assessment with a score of 4.0 or greater, and passing the EIPA knowledge exam.
Restarting the awarding of these certifications is dependent upon
- RID operationalizing the 2007 member motion regarding establishment of criteria for recognizing tests other than RID’s – such as Boys Town, BEI, or some other non-RID or CASLI created testing tool,
- the adoption of this criteria by the RID certified membership, and
- application of these entities for recognition of their test, and compliance of the test with the approved criteria.
If and when these events happen, then the RID Board could determine lifting the moratorium on the appropriate certifications.
The moratorium continues for all performance testing as well as the issuing of all certifications. The Board will be revisiting the question of when and in what order the performance test moratorium might be lifted in March 2016, once more information is known about the multi-partner LLC that is envisioned, and the status of rating of tests taken prior to the moratorium effective date. See the update on the number of moratorium registrants, provided by our Certification Manager, Dan Ebeling. https://rid.org/2015/12/update-on-moratorium-registrations/
In addition, RID, through our certification function, will be working with the membership to establish the standards that any test must satisfy to be accepted for RID certification. RID membership passed a motion in 2007 that has not yet been fulfilled related to the creation of such criteria. With the establishment of the new LLC for testing, this motion will now be addressed and members will vote on what criteria to adopt. Thereafter, all tests recognized by RID will have to demonstrate and satisfy that criteria before the members vote on whether such tests will be recognized by RID for certification.
CM 2007.04 Develop a set of guidelines for including for membership and/or conferring of certified status, individuals who hold credentials from any entity other than RID; that these guidelines be approved by majority vote of the certified membership of RID; and that RID wait until the implementation of these guidelines prior to entering into further discussions, agreements, contracts or in any way incorporating non-RID/NAD certificates into our organization.
Should pre-certified interpreters still take the NIC written test? Will the written portion that is not included in the moratorium also end up in the hands of the new LLC or will that remain a requirement under RID for certification?
Yes, it is RID’s vision that all aspects of testing, including the written exam, will transfer to the new testing LLC. We will begin transferring all testing functions and assets to the new LLC. As we begin inviting other stakeholders into the process and negotiating terms and agreements, the vision will continue to evolve and be solidified.
How will the moratorium and/or the risk assessment address and improve the passing rate? I believe the members (especially the not yet certified members, including myself) are greatly concerned with the low passing rate of ~5%. How will RID address this issue that greatly impacts our ability to work?
The risk assessment focused solely on system issues related to testing and certification and not the test per se. The pass rate of the exams, as reported in the FY14 Annual Report are as follows:
OTC: 0.00% (three exams were taken and all three returned a fail result)
OTC: 100% (one exam was taken and it resulted in a pass result)
The pass rates for Fiscal Year 2015 will be reported in the FY15 Annual Report, which will be distributed to the membership by the end of January 2016.
There are many factors that contribute to a low pass rate–including candidate readiness. The fact that there is a low pass rate should not be assumed as an indication that there is a “problem” with the test. If candidates for the test are not sufficiently prepared to meet the standard, this contributes to a low pass rate. So, all of the factors impacting the pass rate must be looked at and analyzed in order to make appropriate decisions.
The low pass rate on the NIC is of concern to all in the community and will continue to be considered and analyzed through the new LLC. Neither the moratorium or risk assessment focused on the specifics of pass rate for any of the exams. The risk assessment focused on broader system-based issues related to testing and certification. The moratorium was initiated to allow time for RID to identify a sustainable operational and administrative system for test development, maintenance, and administration.
The decision by the Board to establish a separate LLC testing entity was one that focuses on the global role and function of testing and certification within the field. The vision is to develop a structure that supports the shared commitment to providing a mechanism whereby work readiness and satisfaction of minimum standards is determined. RID believes that leveraging resources through a collaborative and jointly shared LLC ensures the ability to sustain this commitment.
Is this a done deal and at this point members are just being informed of the actions that are going to take place?
Yes. The member-elected board, who holds the fiduciary responsibility to RID, made the business decision during their meeting on December 20, 2015, to move forward with the development of a separate testing entity LLC. This information was shared as expeditiously as possible with our volunteer leadership groups on December 21, 2015, and then with the full membership on December 22, 2015. The need to separate testing from other functions of RID has been discussed for many years, and this topic has been under study for some time. The specific way in which to separate these functions has been the focus of the association this year. After the completion of the risk assessment in November 2015, the Board has been focused on evaluating the efficacy of various business models. Prior to making this decision, the Board sought input from legal and financial counsel, the Deaf Advisory Council, the Council of Elders, and the Certification Committee–all comprised of RID members. As well, the RID Board took under advisement the feedback from the nearly 3,000 members who responded to the Association Survey conducted in early spring of this year. The Board has begun conversations with the NAD and will now begin talking with other stakeholders and inviting them into ownership of the new LLC.
Will the LLC be a for profit company?
An LLC, or limited liability company, is a hybrid legal entity that combines the limited legal liability benefits of a corporation with the tax efficiencies of a partnership. This means that the owners (called members) are protected from personal liability for debts while profits and losses are reported on members’ individual tax returns.
At this time, the LLC will be a non-profit entity.
How does RID plan to pay for the administration (someone(s) to run it) of a separate entity (LLC) administratively as well as make up the $150K annual budget shortfall?
Once the new LLC is established, the funding of test development, maintenance, and administration will be the responsibility of that testing entity. RID will transfer its existing assets related to testing, including registration fees already collected, staff, and test materials/resources. As this LLC moves into a multi-stakeholder entity, the owners