Helping All Children Learn, Grow and Develop to Realize their Full Potential
Parents as Teachers (PAT) is a parent education and family support program designed to help all parents give their children the best possible start in life. The program is based on the idea that children are born to learn and they learn best from the people they love and trust - their parents. The program provides expectant parents and parents of children from birth to kindergarten entry information on child development and involves parents in learning activities with their child that encourage language and intellectual growth, physical and social-emotional skills.
Mississippi Bend Area Education Agency has implemented Parents as Teachers Program in Scott County and selected school districts in AEA 9 with federal funding from Safe Schools Healthy Students and Early Reading First Initiatives, and local funding from Scott County Kids Empowerment.
- Personal Visits by certified parent educators, trained in child development, to help parents understand what to expect in each stage of their child’s development and offer practical ways to encourage learning, manage challenging behavior, and promote strong parent-child relationships.
- Group Meetings provide parents opportunities to gain new insights and share their experiences, common concerns, and successes. Group meetings also provide families with the opportunity to participate in parent-child activities.
- Screenings offered periodically assess overall development, language, hearing, and vision, providing early detection of potential problems, which will prevent difficulties later in school.
- Resource Network provides families with access to other community services beyond the scope of the Parents as Teachers Program.
Independent studies of the program revealed that children participating in PAT programs showed significant advancement over their peers in language, social development, and problem solving skills. Parents involved in the program also are more likely to be involved in their child’s education in later years. PAT parents show more confidence in their parenting skills and knowledge; they read more to their children – an important factor in preparing children for school success.
If you desire more information about the Parents as Teachers Program please contact Jennifer Jansen, Parents as Teachers Program Coordinator, Mississippi Bend Area Education Agency (563-344-6393 or firstname.lastname@example.org).