ERIC Number: ED455958
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 2001-Jun
Experiences and Outcomes for Children and Families: Multisite Parents as Teachers Evaluation.
Wagner, Mary; Spiker, Donna
The Parents as Teachers (PAT) program is increasingly turned to as an option in broadening parent education and family support program offerings. In order to provide evidence of PAT's effectiveness in general and with low-income families in particular, a public-private partnership was formed to conduct a multi-site evaluation in three communities. Participating in the evaluation were 667 families with infants up to 8 months of age. Families in each community were randomly assigned to a participant or control group. The participant group was offered monthly home visits and other PAT services for as long as the families chose to remain in the program. The control group received only the services normally available in the site community. Annual child assessments were conducted at or around the children's birthdays. Findings indicated that only minority status and poor maternal health were significant challenges to participant engagement. The most consistent positive program effects were for parenting behaviors, as measured by the Home Observation for Measurement of the Environment Scale, and for measures of parent-child interactions. Very-low-income parents experienced somewhat greater benefits than their more-moderate-income counterparts. Site differences in parent outcomes were substantial. Developmental benefits to 2-year-olds participating in PAT were quite weak. It was concluded that practitioners should have modest expectations for the impact of home visiting programs on parents and children. (A description of the evaluation methods is appended. Contains 61 references.) (KB)
Descriptors: Child Development, Child Health, Home Visits, Infants, Knowledge Level, Low Income Groups, Parent Attitudes, Parent Education, Parents, Parents as Teachers, Participant Characteristics, Program Effectiveness, Program Evaluation
For full text: http://www.sri.com/policy/cehs/publications/humanpub/ patfinal.pdf.
Publication Type: Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Smith Richardson Foundation, Inc., Greensboro, NC.; National Inst. on Early Childhood Development and Education (ED/OERI), Washington, DC.; Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, Princeton, NJ.; Carnegie Corp. of New York, NY.
Authoring Institution: SRI International, Menlo Park, CA.
Note: Produced with Frances Hernandez, Julia Song, and Suzanne Gerlach-Downie. SRI Project P07283.