Roll & Read Part of Great Rivers Greenway Life Outside Festival, June 8 at Creve Coeur Lake Memorial Park


As part of our 35th Anniversary celebration, we are planning a fun Roll & Read event in conjunction with the Great Rivers Greenway Life Outside Festival on June 8, 2019 from 10am to 4pm.

This will be a really fun event lasting the entire time and we need some volunteers to make it a huge success.

We plan to give everyone an opportunity to stroll and read two books along a one-mile trail in the park. We have someone who has already generously volunteered to dress as a duck!

Parents as Teachers National Center and Great Rivers Greenway invite you to bring your friends, family and neighbors to the 4th Annual Life Outside Festival. The event will be held Saturday, June 8, 2019 from 10am to 4pm at Creve Couer Lake Memorial Park in Maryland Heights.

Parents as Teachers National Center and other partner organizations from across the region will let you see, try and learn about a variety of outdoor activities you can do in our region in a free, fun and supportive environment. Activities will include outdoor experiences related to active living, camping, cycling, mind and body, nature and conservation, paddling and running.

In between activities, you can purchase food and beverages from a variety of popular area food trucks and listen to one of 18 musical acts that will be performing throughout the day. Drinking water in reusable bottles and sunscreen will also be available for free.

To ensure greater access to the event, the Life Outside Festival will offer free round-trip shuttles from the North Hanley, Civic Center and Shrewsbury MetroLink Stations. You can also park and ride free shuttles from the Zumbehl Commuter Lot in St. Charles County (adjacent to the intersection of Veterans Memorial Parkway and Zumbehl Road) and Pattonville High School (2497 Creve Couer Mill Rd., Maryland Heights, MO 63043).

More information about the Life Outside Festival can be found at Hope to see you there!


Roll & Read logo

Saturday, June 8, 2019

10:00 AM  4:00 PM

Creve Coeur Lake Memorial Park Sailboat Cove - 13725 Marine 63146 Maryland Heights, MO, 63043
United States 

For additional information, or to volunteer at the event, contact Bart Holland, Parents as Teachers National Center Director of Marketing Communications, and Events, at 314-432-4330 x 1258.


Parents as Teachers National Center Holds Second Annual Professional Women’s Engagement Café


Parents as Teachers National Center (PATNC) held its second annual Professional Women’s Engagement Café on Tuesday, May 14, in celebration of its 35th anniversary and as part of its Women’s Partnership Network, which was created to deepen the organization’s community engagement efforts.

Engagement Cafe logo

This year’s event was hosted by Build-A-Bear Founder and PATNC Board Member Maxine Clark, chair of the Clark-Fox Family Foundation. The Engagement Café is designed to have a positive impact on some of the area’s most vulnerable young women by exposing them to local professional women in a life sharing exercise in roundtable discussions.

“We created this network and subsequent event as an opportunity to have a positive effect on the lives of young mothers served by our organization, and to illustrate the collective impact Parents as Teachers and these accomplished women can have on enriching the lives of people living in underserved communities,” said Constance Gully, PATNC president and chief executive officer, who opened the event with a welcome.

Invited were 15 young mothers who receive PATNC services and professional women who embrace PATNC’s mission to strengthen families and ensure that their children will learn, grow and develop to realize their full potential. The professional women included: Candice Carter-Oliver, Confluence Charter Schools; Raegan Johnson, Bayer; Rebecca Fritsch, Fifth Third Bank; Katie Knapp, Thompson Coburn; Linda Locke, Standing Partnership; Brittany “Tru” Kellman, Jamaa Birth Village; Cheryl Watkins-Moore, BioSTL; Sharonica Hardin-Bartley, University City School District; Mecca Baker, Novus; Cynthia Crim, Commerce Bank; Carol Daniel, KMOX-AM radio; and Pamela Blair, EyeSeeMe African American Children’s Bookstore.

At-Risk Children Show Improvement in Key Areas of Early Development

International study demonstrates effectiveness of Parents as Teachers home visiting model

A new international study, recently published findings in the Early Childhood Research Quarterly, a peer-reviewed academic journal, revealed that children ages 0-3, in high risk families, benefitted greatly from Parents as Teachers evidence-based home visiting model, which helped improve their cognition, self-control, language skills and overall behavior.

Click image to download infographic

Click image to download infographic

Allison Kemner, vice president of research and quality at Parents as Teachers National Center, said, “The new findings have real-world implications for struggling families because they show that the Parents as Teachers home visiting model is having a significant impact on children’s mental health in families at risk of poor outcomes.

“A child’s early language and cognition and the development of self-regulation are directly associated with later school performance and success,” Kemner said, adding, “Children in our programs wake up less during the night to bottle feed, sleep longer through the night, have better vocabulary and self-control, and they score higher on language and cognition tests.”

Researchers at the University Of Applied Sciences Of Special Needs Education in Zurich, Switzerland, conducted the Zurich Equity Prevention Project with Parents Participation and Integration (ZEPPELIN) study and found that:

Children in Parents as Teachers:

  • Demonstrated better adaptive behavior (lower rates of bottle feeding at night at 12, 24, and 36 months; and higher rates of sleeping at night during the same growth period).

  • Showed higher levels of self-control at 36 months.

  • Scored significantly higher on cognition and language development.

  • Demonstrated a higher vocabulary at 24 and 36 months.

Mothers in Parents as Teachers:

  • Showed increased parenting skills and displayed more sensitivity to their children.

  • Increased social integration and accessed libraries and community centers more often.

“Parents as Teachers is especially well-suited for providing effective and long-lasting developmental support to children in families experiencing social burdens,” said Dr. Andrea Lanfranchi, the psychologist who conducted the study.

ZEPPELIN is one of the largest longitudinal intervention studies of evidence-based home visiting in Europe with a randomized-controlled trial study design. Families participating in the study included those who had many stressful experiences that inhibit optimal health and family stability, including, babies who were born premature and children with moms with low educational attainment. Most families in the study were socially disadvantaged immigrant families. Researchers intend to continue this study to follow the children through kindergarten to look at long-term sustainable outcomes.

To learn more about research studies that show that Parents as Teachers improves school readiness, reduces child maltreatment, improves parenting skills and parent involvement and leads to improved children mental health and family well-being, click here.

Parents as Teachers Day at the Park a Rousing Success! Ushers in next 35th Anniversary Celebration Event – Roll & Read

Parents as Teachers Day at the Park on Sunday, April 7, was a rousing success with 500 Parents as Teachers employees and their families converging on Busch Stadium in downtown St. Louis to see Parents as Teachers President/CEO Constance Gully throw out the first ceremonial pitch to at the St. Louis Cardinals vs San Diego Padres baseball game.

The game served as the kick-off to year-long events Parents as Teachers National Center has planned to commemorate its 35th anniversary. In keeping with the 35th anniversary celebration theme – Investing in Families, Impacting Communities – and the pledge of heightened community engagement efforts throughout the organization’s network of 1,036 affiliates, Parents as Teachers National Center is gearing up for the second leg of the celebratory activities – Roll & Read, an initiative to inspire reading among children and families.

Roll & Read logo

Roll & Read – Powered by Parents as Teachers is a community awareness opportunity that promotes early literacy and healthy families. It features a one-mile walk and stroller roll for families, and community partner booths with food and activities. The walk is designed to have three reading stations; a stop every one-quarter mile, and a place for children to gather and for someone to read a designated book to them.

Roll & Read also promotes school readiness and is an enjoyable group activity for families, and an opportunity to engage community partners and community officials. This 35th anniversary year, Parents as Teachers will be a festival partner at the Great Rivers Greenway 4th Annual Life Outside Festival, a free outdoor festival for the St. Louis region.

PA Family Center 2nd Annual Roll and Read 11_crop.jpg
PA Family Center 2nd Annual Roll and Read 22.jpg

It will be held from 10 a.m. – 4 p.m., Saturday, June 8, in Creve Coeur Lake Memorial Park, and is designed to help people explore and enjoy the great outdoors in the region.

For additional information, or to volunteer at the event, contact Bart Holland, Parents as Teachers National Center Director of Marketing Communications, and Events, at 314-432-4330 x 1258.

Parents as Teachers Visits Missouri State Capitol for Child Advocacy Day 2019

Parents as Teachers staff joined a community of parents, children, and professionals who value the health and well-being of every child and are dedicated to each child reaching their full potential with no barriers to their success at the Missouri State Capitol in Jefferson City, MO for the 37th Annual Child Advocacy Day on April 2, 2019.

While there, Parents as Teachers staff and administrators met with representatives of the Missouri House to thank them for supporting an increase for Parents as Teachers in the state’s budget, and to seek their support for several key legislative priorities of the day.

The ‘2019 Hot Topics’ included support for Nathan’s Law to ensure child safety in childcare centers, funding for a Quality Assurance Report of childcare centers, reestablishment of the Trauma-Informed Care Task Force, and increased access to health services in rural areas for children.

Many state representatives greeted PAT staff and posed for pictures in the State Capitol. Below pictured far left is State Rep. Dr. Alan K. Green (D-Florissant). Far right is State Rep. Alan Jerome Gray (D-Blackjack); Back row third from right is State Rep. Chris Carter (D-St. Louis City).

Parents as Teachers staff and pictured far left is State Rep. Dr. Alan K. Green (D-Florissant). Far right is State Rep. Alan Jerome Gray (D-Blackjack); Back row third from right is State Rep. Chris Carter (D-St. Louis City).

Staff also were introduced as guests of the Senate and met with many Senators before attending policy workshops. In all, more than 500 advocates from across the state rallied to protect and advocate for the most vulnerable population among us, our children.

Tim’s Travels: Parents as Teachers Day at Busch Stadium

This morning, Parents as Teachers President/CEO Constance Gully was spotlighted on FOX 2 News in the Morning (Tim Ezell’s Show) as part of the kick-off to the 35th anniversary celebration activities we have planned throughout the year. Constance will throw out the first pitch at the St. Louis Cardinals baseball game this Sunday and will join 500 Parents as Teachers staff members and their families in the stands afterwards. Tim Ezell interviewed her at the Parents as Teachers National Center about her pitching prowess and other 35th anniversary events.

Parents as Teachers connects home visiting to healthcare networks, pediatricians to help improve children’s health

SPRINGFIELD, MO – March 29, 2019 Creating new ways for parents to connect to healthcare systems and pediatricians is the aim of a new collaboration between the Springfield Public School District’s Parents as Teachers (PAT) home visiting program and Maternal Child Health (MCH) providers in southwest Missouri’s Greene County.

Through a federal grant program called Healthy Tomorrows Partnership for Children, the two entities are joining forces behind an initiative named “Community Connections” to address ways MCH providers and PAT parent educators can engage with families to ensure that their children’s healthcare needs are being met.

Parents as Teachers is a federally-recognized home visiting model, headquartered in St. Louis, MO that serves families through personal visits – primarily in the home – with early and routine health and developmental screenings of children, parent support group meetings, and referrals to community resources as needed.

The goal of the collaboration is to create a parent-centered system that promotes the overall well-being, early childhood development and learning of children, so they are ready to succeed in kindergarten.

Katherine Quinn (left) a parent educator with the Springfield Parents as Teachers program, assists a family with early childhood educational development during a home visit in Greene County.

Katherine Quinn (left) a parent educator with the Springfield Parents as Teachers program, assists a family with early childhood educational development during a home visit in Greene County.

According to Katie Quinn, one of five PAT parent educators embedded in the Community Connections project, and assisting pregnant mothers and parents of young children in different area medical facilities, Healthy Tomorrows seeks to reduce overlap and increase coordination among the early childhood home-visiting and MCH provider communities.

“This collaboration gives us an opportunity to learn about what systematic changes can take place to support parents’ engagement in their children’s health,” said Quinn. “Our focus is to ensure that families receive more comprehensive support and are ultimately able to improve the health and developmental outcomes of their children.”

Healthy Tomorrows is administered by the Division of Maternal and Child Health Workforce Development. It is funded by the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) of the Department of Health and Human Services, the Missouri Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics, and a grant from the Missouri Foundation for Health.

Other community partners include Every Child Promise, a community-wide initiative in Springfield to reduce by 50 percent (in 10 years) the number of children who arrive at kindergarten unprepared; The Nest, Ozark Community Hospital, a safety net hospital; Greene County Health Department, Jordan Valley Health Center, a federally qualified health center (FQHC), and a host of pediatric practices in the region.

Pediatrician Dr. Kelly Wright (left) discusses parenting tactics with Amanda Coleman, a parent educator in the Springfield Parents as Teachers home visiting program. Coleman is embedded in the clinical setting at Cox North Pediatrics.

Pediatrician Dr. Kelly Wright (left) discusses parenting tactics with Amanda Coleman, a parent educator in the Springfield Parents as Teachers home visiting program. Coleman is embedded in the clinical setting at Cox North Pediatrics.

At the crux of the project, Quinn said, are pediatricians and pediatric primary care providers. She said cultivating greater coordination between PAT home visitors, pediatricians, and the MCH community is a chief strategy to improve care and outcomes for the targeted communities. The project serves as a model for national replication through the PAT network of 1,036 affiliates in all 50 states.

The Springfield Parents as Teachers program currently serves more than 2,500 families, nearly half of these families have two or more high needs characteristics (e.g. low-income, teen parent, limited English proficiency). 

Research shows that children's health is a key factor in school readiness and success and that there is growing recognition by pediatricians that home visiting is an effective strategy for improving health outcomes for children. Children with untreated, chronic health problems are frequently absent from school and can develop knowledge gaps that are hard to overcome. 

“This is a great program that will prepare and empower MCH leaders to promote health equity, wellness, and reduce disparities in health and healthcare by partnering home visiting services with pediatric care providers in multiple settings,” Quinn said.

Home Visiting for Military Families: An Overview of Innovative Programs

Home Visiting Militery Pic2.jpg

March 18, 2019

More than 600,000 children under age 6 have a parent in the military, according to estimates from the U.S. Department of Defense. Many military families face stressors beyond the day-to-day parenting challenges encountered by their civilian counterparts. Military families are more likely to move often, for example, and many go through parental deployment and reintegration.*

Our newest Innovation Roundup Brief explores four efforts to provide home visiting services to military families:

  • New Parent Support Program

  • Strong Families Strong Forces

  • Families OverComing Under Stress for Early Childhood

  • Pilot program authorized by the Military Family Prevention, Response, and Other Training to End Military Family Abuse and Connect Communities Today Act

Read the full brief to learn about each effort’s goals/purpose, key stakeholders, notable details, accomplishments, implications, and upcoming activities. We also share information on military-informed care and the deployment cycle.

Suggested citation: Adelstein, S., Longo, F., & Shakesprere, J. (2019, March). Home visiting for military families: An overview of innovative programs. National Home Visiting Resource Center Innovation Roundup Brief. Arlington, VA: James Bell Associates and Urban Institute.

*See the full brief for references.