KSDE Weekly

Feature Story

PAT program coordinators gather with focus on supporting Kansas children through high-quality home visiting services

Fifty-eight Kansas Parents as Teachers program coordinators gathered Nov. 6-7 in Wichita for a two-day meeting focused on supporting Kansas families and children through high-quality PAT home visiting services.

With the 58 program coordinators who attended the meeting, there was 686 years of combined PAT experience.

“The energy in the room was electric,” said Lisa Williams, PAT coordinator for KSDE. “Coordinators engaged in discussion and thoughtful reflection on the high-quality and individualized support families receive as they engage in Parents as Teachers. It was a great experience to have so many of our PAT affiliates represented at the two-day meeting.”

Amanda Petersen, director of the Kansas State Department of Education’s (KSDE) Early Childhood team, discussed early childhood education in Kansas. Janet Horras, with the Iowa Department of Health and a consultant for the Kansas Children’s Cabinet and Trust Fund and State Home Visiting Leadership Team, discussed home visiting alignment in Kansas and helped participants reflect on the expansion of future home visiting services.

Deputy Commissioner Dr. Ben Proctor discussed and gathered feedback from coordinators on supporting families and children for educational success through evidenced-based home visiting services, such as PAT.

“As an evidence-based home visiting program, PAT supports families and children, prenatal through age 5, with rich curriculum related to development-centered parenting, parent-child interaction and family well-being,” Petersen said. “Engaging families and children before they begin their educational journey will support Kansas schools in achieving their goals of school improvement and improved student outcomes. It is important for districts to consider allocating funding to Parents as Teachers and other evidence-based early childhood programs as part of their strategy to advance district goals for kindergarten readiness.”

Posted: Nov 16, 2023,
Comments: 0,
Author: Ann Bush

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