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Texas Scottish Rite Hospital for Children
Dallas, Texas

A national consortium of clinical professionals and Masons will meet in Dallas this fall for a special week-end of education and exploration.


As a result of the great success of the first Scottish Rite Childhood Language Disorders Clinic and Learning Center Conference in Denver in 1996, Sovereign Grand Commander C. Fred Kleinknecht, 33, has scheduled the second annual meeting in Dallas on Friday, September 11 and Saturday, September 12, 1998, at Le Meridien Hotel. A national consortium of clinical professionals and Masons concerned with children’s literacy and language skills will gather in Dallas this fall for a special weekend of education and exploration.

Ill. C. Fred Kleinknecht, 33 (right) welcomed Ill. J. C. Montgomery, 33, president, Texas Scottish Rite Hospital for Children, as the keynote speaker at the 1996 Scottish Rite Childhood Language Disorders Clinic and Learning Center Conference held in Denver, Colorado. Ill. Montgomery will host the 1998 Conference in Dallas, Texas, September 11–12, 1998.

The event will take place during the same weekend as a Dallas meeting of Sovereign Grand Inspectors General. Texas Scottish Rite Hospital for Children (TSRHC), and Ill. Sam E. Hilburn, 33, chairman of the board and S.G.I.G. in Texas, will host several conference sessions as well as a Friday evening dinner and program.

The conference will offer a variety of sessions focusing on treatment programs for children’s difficulties in both oral and written language. Additional sessions will highlight information detailing how anyone can contribute to children’s language skills and the importance of reading to children. Priscilla Vail, B.A., M.A.T., noted author of Words Fail Me: How Language Works and What Happens When It Doesn’t, as well as many other titles, will serve as a featured speaker.

The conference will be centered on the link between language and literacy. Gladys Kolenovsky, administrative director of the Luke Waites Child Development Center at Texas Scottish Rite Hospital for Children, points out that “Some of the Scottish Rite clinics, centers and programs focus on helping children develop language skills, while others focus on improving reading and written language skills. All, however, share common goals and a common mission. This conference will help to increase everyone’s awareness about the diverse approaches being offered throughout the country. We can learn from each other about the scope and quality of available treatment. And we can help to create awareness throughout the United States about the Scottish Rite Language and Learning Program’s work.”

The conference planning committee includes: Ill. Bros. Sam E. Hilburn, chairman of the board, J. C. Montgomery, Jr., president, TSRHC; Elizabeth Cantrill and Gladys Kolenovsky from Dallas; Cynthia Jacobsen from Kansas City; and Barbara McQuitty from St. Louis. Committee members invite clinic directors, clinicians, clinic board members, and interested Masons to attend the conference to gain a broadened awareness about work taking place at facilities and programs across the nation, as well as to learn about ways to establish dyslexia programs.

Event organizers hope to build on the success of the first Scottish Rite Childhood Language Disorders Clinic and Learning Center Conference held in Denver in 1996. More than 150 people from 36 different states and territories attended the inaugural conference which was rated by participants as a highly successful event. Planning committee members say that Ill. Bros. Earl K. Dille, 33, Dwight A. Hamilton, 33, Deborah Hayes, Ph.D., and members of the 1996 planning committee set an impressive standard for future conferences.

All involved in the planning of the 1998 conference would like to see participation of both Masons and clinicians grow this year. “Masons can be so proud of the scope and extent of the programs they support,” Kolenovsky says. “Of course, there is much more work to be done, and we can all be a part of it. Our goal is to see that all of us learn how we—clinicians, Masons, parents, and volunteers—can support the development of language skills and literacy in children.”

For more information about the Scottish Rite Childhood Language Disorders Clinic and Learning Center Conference, contact Gladys Kolenovsky or Elizabeth Cantrill of Texas Scottish Rite Hospital for Children at (800) 421–1121 or write to the address at the head of this article.