Parents as Teachers (PAT)
The Ounce of Prevention Fund serves as the PAT State Office and provides statewide support for approximately 200 PAT programs in Illinois. Working closely with the PAT National Center, The Ounce provides the infrastructure for administration and leadership for PAT in Illinois. Learn more about the Ounce of Prevention Fund.
An Introduction to Parents as a Teachers
Formed in 1981, Parents as Teachers today holds to its original vision – that all children will learn, grow, and develop to reach their full potential, and that parents are their earliest and best teachers. Parents as Teachers aims to realize this vision by helping parents positively impact their children’s development, beginning before they are born, so that by the time they reach school age, they will be fully ready to learn. Learn more about Parents as Teachers.
The Parents as Teachers program is an evidence-based early childhood home visiting framework that builds strong communities, thriving families and children who are healthy, safe and ready to learn.
Parents as Teachers certified parent educators who implement the program emphasize parent-child interaction, development centered parenting and family well-being in their work with families.
There are four interrelated and integrated components of the model: personal visits, group connections, screening and resource network. Together, these form a dynamic package of services. Parents as Teachers serves a range of families with varying needs and offers services throughout the continuum from prenatal to kindergarten entry.
Ultimately, the Parents as Teachers model is a cohesive package of services with four primary goals:
- Increase parent knowledge of early childhood development and improve parenting practices.
- Provide early detection of developmental delays and health issues.
- Prevent child abuse and neglect.
- Increase children’s school readiness and school success.
The digital curriculum is grounded in the latest research and consists of parent-child activities, parent handouts, and parent educator resources that are available 24/7 wherever internet access is available. Embedded links take you quickly to subjects or handouts and the handouts can be printed in any quantity for the families being served.
Each visit plan includes a parent-child activity, parenting strategies to promote healthy development, and a focus on family well-being. There is also a time for book sharing included in the visit.
Initial training for staff consists of 3 days of Foundational Training and 2 days of Model Implementation Training for Parent Educators. Supervisors are required to attend the 2 days of Model Implementation and encouraged to also attend the 3 days of Foundational Training.