Pennsylvania Parents as Teachers (PAT) state office at Center for Schools and Communities facilitated foundational trainings this week for parent educators and other family support professionals. The interactive, face-to-face trainings gave participants a better understanding of what it means to partner, facilitate and reflect with parents whose children are growing in independence and abilities as they approach school entry. Training and curriculum covered children’s growth and development from before birth through age three. The trainings included topics such as approaches to learning, neuroscience, child development, developmental concerns, transitions to early care and education and family engagement.
Pennsylvania PAT evidence-based home visiting model promotes the optimal early development, learning and health of children by supporting and engaging their parents and caregivers. PAT serves families during pregnancy through the child’s first year in school; and PAT can enroll families in the voluntary program anytime during that continuum. It provides parenting education and family support services that build protective factors, especially among families in vulnerable situations. Programs work with families for two or more years to ensure greater depth of knowledge and increased likelihood of continued positive outcomes.
The PAT vision is that all children will develop and grow to realize their full potential. Parents as Teachers programs operating in Pennsylvania since 1992, are funded through a variety of sources, including the federal Maternal, Infant and Early Childhood Home Visiting (MIECHV) program, state Office of Child Development and Early Learning (OCDEL), county children and youth agencies, school districts, foundations and gifts. The Pennsylvania PAT state office at Center for Schools and Communities provides implementation support to programs through site visits, phone consultations, monthly webinars, newsletters and professional development in local workshops and regional and statewide settings, as well as PAT National Center developed core certification courses. Pennsylvania PAT is part of Pennsylvania Family Support Stakeholders group and the Family Centers network, and collaborates with other evidence based-home visiting models and advocates in the Childhood Begins at Home Campaign.