There are several types of palatal surgery; each cleft centre chooses its own technique based on experience and treatment philosophy. The aim of this study was to compare speech outcome and maxillary growth in children with cleft lip and palate deformity after palate repair with either a one-stage or a two- stage procedure and to identify the better treatment protocol. In 24 children, speech outcome was assessed regarding resonance, nasal escape, compensatory articulations, facial grimace, and spontaneous speech. In addition, plaster models of 15 children were compared. In 12 children, a two-stage procedure was performed (group A): at the age of 9-12 months, an intravelar veloplasty for repair of the soft palate, and at the age of 24-36 months a bipedicled flap closure of the hard palate. In 12 children, the same techniques were used in a one-stage procedure, at the age of 9-12 months (group B). The children of group B showed less altered resonance and less nasal emission at 4 years of age compared to the children of group A. At 6 years, the children of group A had improved their speech skills, but they did not equal the results of group B. In the study models of group A at age 6 years, the transverse dimension (anterior and posterior width of the dental arch) was smaller than in the models of group B. The one-stage repair of cleft palate at the age of 9-12 months seems to have a more positive influence on speech development and early maxillary growth than the two-stage procedure.