ERIC Number: ED472127
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2002-Jun
Reference Count: N/A
Grandparent Headed Families and Head Start: Developing Effective Services.
Dannison, Linda L.; Smith, Andrea B.
Numerous challenges face the growing number of grandparent-headed households, including isolation from friends and social supports, and difficulties in caring for grandchildren exhibiting multiple needs. This paper describes a pilot program in which a university and a large county-wide Head Start program formed a partnership to focus on serving the needs of custodial grandparents, their preschool-aged grandchildren, and Head Start personnel. Grandparents from rural and urban sites were randomly placed in treatment and control groups. The treatment was comprised of three components: (1) an 8-week program of educational and support services for grandparents, including weekly 2-hour meetings on personal well-being, parenting skills, legal issues, financial concerns, and working with school and community; (2) 8 educational interactions for grandchildren held at the same time as--and integrated with--the grandparent groups, with session topics focusing on self esteem, diverse family types, and emotional themes common in grandparented children's lives; and (3) education of Head Start personnel on strategies for enhancing communication, educating grandparents about child development, and adapting curriculum to meet the children's needs. Pre- and posttest assessment showed positive changes for all three populations. Grandparents increased their knowledge of child development and parenting skills, self-esteem, and knowledge of available resources and decreased their feelings of isolation and depression. Grandchildren showed increases in self- esteem and social competence. Staff reported increased knowledge about the unique challenges and strengths of grandparent-headed families. Modifications were made for Year 2 of the project. (Contains 10 references.) (Author/KB)
Publication Type: Reports - Evaluative; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A