The role of the interpreter in the classroom is to faithfully convey the spirit and content of the communication occurring in the classroom. Interpreters are not teacher’s aides nor assistants. Unless specifically arranged, interpreters do not serve as tutors and are not responsible for the student’s attendance and classroom effort. The interpreter’s job does not start and end in the classroom.
The interpreter must become familiar with the course content that will be discussed—a task that may involve additional research on topic related words and phrases—and the signs needed to convey them.
A good interpreter does not start interpreting immediately after a person begins communicating; rather, they take time to cognitively process the content and message being delivered. Consequently, interpreters follow at a pace approximately one or two sentences behind the person who is actively communicating. This is true whether the communicator is deaf or hearing. (National Deaf Center, Sign Language Interpreters in the Classroom)