Letters to the editor

Speech therapists needed As a director of a childcare center, along with parents, we should work together to provide every available resource to ensure that when a child reaches kindergarten, he or she has a broad base knowledge of speech. Only speech therapists receive any formal training or schooling for speech problems. There are not enough therapists in the United States to overcome a growing concern of speech problems, whether it is a slow learner or someone hearing English for the first time. Training at a state to local level should be mandated so caregivers at learning centers would be the first line of defense to ensure a child's development starts properly.
Insurance companies should understand that speech problems are a medical condition and should be covered to access the care needed. Pediatrics and therapists should be able to work with child caregivers to ensure the best course to take. If we have the necessary training and mandates in place, we can have our children ready for kindergarten and ease some burden on our school system. In closing, we as childcare giving professionals must recognize and act to ensure the children placed in our care be given every opportunity to be able to speak from their minds and be in a fun, safe learning environment, and work closely at this young age and understand when there is a problem. Gisela Wheeler Director U and Me Activity and Learning Center Why events involving alcohol? The Children's Museum of the Highlands is hosting its first craft beer festival. For the children's museum? Why does everything downtown have to include consuming mass quantities of alcohol? What kind of message are we sending our children? That's a sad commentary on our culture and our community. What an opportunity for a dialogue. People drive to the Circle for these bacchanals and, at some point, must drive away. If they've had two drinks, they are likely over the legal limit. But the city of Sebring promotes it. Mike Pirkkala Avon Park Editor's note: The craft beer festival is not being held at the museum, during its regular operating hours. The event is a fundraiser for the group.