The Miracle of the Scottish Rite Clinics, Centers and Programs for Childhood Language Disorders

In the early 1950's in Colorado, the Scottish Rite of Freemasonry S. J. of the United States initiated a program to help children with speech and language disorders. The results obtained from this program led to the establishment of Scottish Rite clinics to provide diagnostic evaluation and treatment of speech and language disorders, as well as learning disabilities.

Today there are 146 Scottish Rite clinics, centers, and special programs for children and therapists located throughout the United States. Each facility is staffed by speech-language pathologists or other trained personnel. Through the support of Scottish Rite members, these clinics, centers, and programs continue to increase.

The value of this philanthropy has long been apparent. Tens of thousands of youngsters across the United States have been helped significantly. With the good work of dedicated clinicians and parents, the Scottish Rite has achieved successes that could only be imagined a few years back. Children who might have remained educationally handicapped for a lifetime can now talk, read, and lead useful lives.


The Importance of Early Evaluation and Treatment

   In the past few years, there has been increasing recognition of the importance of evaluating and treating childhood problems at the earliest possible stage. The chances of a child with a communication disorder attaining his or her peer group level are much greater if the child receives help at an early age.

What to do if a parent suspects a child needs Help

   A parent with concerns about a child's language or learning ability should call a Scottish Rite Clinic or Center for Childhood Language Disorders for guidance or contact appropriate municipal or state organizations. 
   The first step is a complete evaluation of the child's condition by professionals. In most instances, a child identified as having a communication disorder can be helped by the Scottish Rite. However, a child who demonstrates overall developmental delays or severe handicapping conditions may require other forms of treatment, such as physical therapy or a full-time special education program.
   Any of the trained speech-language pathologists at the Scottish Rite clinics and centers can recommend programs specializing in advanced treatment.
   These facilities generally are located in or adjacent to a Scottish Rite Center and the clinics may be associated with major hospitals or universities in the area. All are clearly identified in the telephone book and are known to health care and education professionals in the areas in which they are located.
   The main thing parents should remember is to seek help as soon as possible if there is any indication that the child has a problem.



  Results that Touch the Heart

A child so frustrated that he was hyperactive became a productive learner.

A child who was alienated and depressed because of a language impairment and who was devastating his household became friendly and responded in a happy manner to gentle sustained treatment.

A little girl who thought retarded reached out and spoke the names of her parents.

A boy who had a seemingly hopeless speech problem is today a successful lawyer.

 How to Identify Language Disorders and Associated Learning Disabilities

Children who have these problems are  sometimes hard to detect. As noted before, there is a wide age range for children to begin talking.  Parents may become concerned later than desirable, may not recognize or may misinterpret the symptoms.

These children are often slow in developing a vocabulary or are difficult to understand, using incomplete or incorrect sentences or gibberish. They may have difficulties with attention, memory or word retrieval.  They may be slow in  Processing auditory information.

There are many technical diagnostic terms for these problems, and some of them can sound terrifying to parents. However, parents must remember that many  of these dysfunctions do not mean mental deficiency or emotional disturbance. 





Scottish Rite Speech and Language Association

Valley of Joplin
Scottish Rite Masonic Center
505 S. Byers Ave
Joplin, Missouri 64801
(417) 623-3219

33 Masonic Drive                   Columbia MO 65202-6535   Telephone: 573-886-0687

Scottish Rite Center                      1330 Linwood Blvd                   Kansas City  MO 64109-1935       816-561-2277



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