Refugee & Immigrant Services

Refugee Family Support Office

The Austin ISD Refugee Family Support Office serves as a language and resource hub for refugee and asylee students and their families enrolled in Austin ISD.

Refugees are people who is forced to flee their home country because of a well-founded fear of persecution, and who arrive in the United States already designated a refugee. Asylees are immigrants in the U.S. or at a port of entry who are found unable or unwilling to return to their home country of nationality because of a well-founded fear of persecution if they return to that country.

The Refugee Support Service Team supports more than 18 languages and can facilitate interpretation or translation of the following:

  • Arabic
  • Burmese
  • Farsi/Dari
  • French
  • Karen (limited)
  • Karenni (limited)
  • Kirundi
  • Kiyarwanda
  • Kurdish
  • Lingala
  • Nepali
  • Pashto
  • Russian
  • Somali
  • Spanish
  • Swahili
  • Thai
  • Tigrinya
  • Urdu

The team provides translation and interpretation for:

  • Parent/Teacher conferences
  • Meetings
  • Day-to-day interpretation services—such as assisting families with understanding school forms—for 90 campuses
  • Facilitate campus events targeting refugee families (e.g., Coffee with the Principal, Back to School Night, Know Your Rights events, etc.)
  • Home visits
  • Emergency language support for families and campuses
  • Removal hearings and orientation at the district's Alternative Learning Center
  • Disciplinary matters

For all interpretation and translation requests, please contact Family Support Specialist Maria Arabbo at 512-414-0545 or by email at maria.arabbo@austinisd.org.

Additional Services

  • School registration support
  • Tutoring
  • Special education assistance
  • Social/Emotional support
  • Training for school staff and community agencies

For support and more information, please contact the Austin ISD Refugee Family Support Office at 512-414-0545.