Rebecca Alper on long-term impacts of early language skills

UW-Madison speech pathology professor Rebecca Alper explains how speech language disorders can affect lifelong outcomes among children and considers the role of education access in providing support.

By Zac Schultz | Here & Now

December 5, 2023

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Rebecca Alper:
Early language skills are one of the best predictors of academic, social, vocational outcomes. So not receiving the support that they need for children who have speech language disorders can be really detrimental to lifespan outcomes. You know, you think about participation in the workforce, think about health literacy, right? All of these things are really critical for outcomes across the lifespan. And then I would also just say that, you know, we have policy in this country to provide free and appropriate public education and to make sure that we are providing the individualized supports that children need to access the curriculum and to participate in that intervention or in their education. And so, you know, I think that we, you know, owe it to our future. We owe it to the children who will become the adults of the future to ensure that we are providing equitable access to these really valuable educational experiences.

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