Parents as Teachers (PAT)
“Research demonstrates that voluntary home visiting is a highly effective strategy that engages parents more deeply in their children’s early development and learning,” said Hippert. “It results in healthier mothers and children, a reduction in health care costs throughout life, more resilient families, and children entering school with higher social, emotional, and cognitive skills.”
Scott Hippert, CEO Parents as Teachers
Being a parent is the most important and sometimes hardest job anyone will ever have. Parents* want what is best for children: a loving family, good health, a good education, a safe and caring community to grow up in and perhaps most importantly, hope for a bright future. Parents as Teachers (PAT) programs provide parents with knowledge and resources to prepare their children for a stronger start in life and greater success in school.
*Parents include people with relationships to children which may be biological, adoptive, foster, and may be grandparents, older siblings or other adults who create a family for a child.
The Center for Schools and Communities (CSC) maintains the State Office for PAT in Pennsylvania. CSC is responsible to develop, support and sustain high quality PAT programs by promoting fidelity to the PAT model, providing technical assistance to programs to support excellent, comprehensive services for all families, overseeing and guiding programs to achieve the PAT outcomes, and advocating for availability and accessibility of quality early care and education programs for families in the state.
In 1992, the first Pennsylvania funded Parents as Teachers (PAT) programs were implemented in 13 newly created family centers, by the Pennsylvania Department of Education. Today, PAT is being used by 43 family centers and in other settings for a total of 70 organizations with 95 program sites.
PAT affiliate programs have different homes in their communities which may include additional family support services, but maintain the same evidence-based PAT services.
Other PAT homes include county children and youth agencies, health programs, schools, and private non-profit family support organizations.
PAT services are funded through:
- PA Department of Human Services Office of Children Youth and Families (DHS-OCYF)
- Maternal Infant Early Childhood Home Visitation (MIECHV) administered through PA Office of Child Development and Early Learning (OCDEL)
- Head Start and Early Head Start
- PA Children’s Trust Fund
- County Children and Youth
- Health Services
- Local fund raising efforts