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The Leavenworth Times - Leavenworth, KS
  • Pioneer Pride: Parents as Teachers program

  • Parents are their child’s first and most influential teacher. The Leavenworth School District recognizes and appreciates this fact.


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  • Parents are their child’s first and most influential teacher. The Leavenworth School District recognizes and appreciates this fact.
     
    The district is proud to partner with the Fort Leavenworth School District to provide the Leavenworth/Ft. Leavenworth Parents as Teachers (PAT) program to assist parents as they foster their child’s growth during the crucial early years of life.
     
    The PAT program provides information, support, and encouragement families need to help their children develop optimally. PAT is a free, voluntary program for parents living in Leavenworth or Fort Leavenworth with children under 3 years of age. The program has been recognized by the Parents as Teachers National Center as a “Program of Excellence.”
    The PAT program employs eight certified parent educators who are trained to translate scientific information about early childhood development for parents. By understanding what to expect during each stage of development, parents can easily capture the teachable moments to further their child’s language development, intellectual growth, social development, and motor skills. Parent educators help parents facilitate their child’s development with a wide range of services.
     
    Parent educators conduct voluntary home visits where they share age-appropriate child development information with parents. During these visits, they teach parents how to observe their child’s behaviors, address parenting concerns, and engage in family activities that provide meaningful parent/child interaction.
     
    The PAT program offers several physical and cognitive screenings for children up to 3 years of age. Parents can elect to have a parent educator conduct a general hearing, vision, and dental screening of their child. In addition, the PAT program offers the Ages and Stages screening which evaluates communication, gross motor, problem solving, personal, and socio-emotional development.
     
    Group connections hosted by PAT provide fun opportunities for parents and their young children to do things together and promote social interactions with other parents and children in the area. Examples of previous group connections include the Red Barn Farm, Dads and Donuts, and Blockfest.
    In addition to special group connection events, PAT offers weekly playgroups where parents can experience their child’s development in a play format and meet other families in the community with children of similar age. Parent educators facilitate age appropriate activities using storybook themes.
     
    Playgroups, and all PAT services, are free to residents of the Leavenworth and Fort Leavenworth communities. However, parents are required to enroll their child in PAT in order to enjoy these playgroups. Once enrolled, the child is placed in a specific playgroup session, depending upon the child’s age. Age groups consist of 2-7 months, 8-14 months, 14-24 months and 24-36 months. All playgroups take place at Nettie Hartnett Education Center, 1000 3rd Avenue, Leavenworth, Kan., 66048.
    PAT has open enrollment throughout the year.  New playgroups begin the week of September 11th and several of these classes are already full.  To sign your child up for PAT, and to be able to enjoy all of the befits this program has to offer, contact the Nettie Hartnett Education Center, (913) 684-1450, or email Kevin.Lunsford@usd453.org.  
    Page 2 of 2 - Pioneer Pride is submitted by the Leavenworth?School District.
     

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