Inspiring Us This Week: Parents as Teachers Program

The Parents as Teachers program at the Sunshine School and Development Center believes that the parent is, and should be every child’s first and most important teacher. This program is in place to help parents become that for their children. In the last year, the program has aided in the detection of developmental delays in 37 children through its yearly screenings. The Parents as Teachers, or PAT, program offers monthly meetings and yearly screenings to help ensure that children stay on track in their development. Being a new parent can be a difficult and stressful thing, the Sunshine School and Development Center’s Parents as Teachers program is “Inspiring Us This Week” through the impact this program has on kids, and families, just like Eli:


“The following letter came from a Spanish speaking mother. We translated it for you to better understand. Ethan was born 5 weeks premature and only weighted 5lbs. His mom was enrolled in our Parents as Teachers program when she was pregnant with Eli*. After 2 long weeks in the hospital, after his birth, he was finally able to come home. Since the parent educator was already in the home, she was able to keep a close eye on Eli’s development. (Children that are born premature especially need to be monitored to make sure they do not fall behind in development.) Over the first few months, the parent educator (PE) notices that Eli’s general development was progressing rather slowly. The main concern was Eli’s language development. Even though he was only about 10 months old, he was not making any kind of sounds at all. The PE expressed her concerns to Mom and suggested she talk to her pediatrician. The doctor confirmed the concern of the PE and referred the child for a speech evaluation. The child received speech therapy for approximately one year until he caught up developmentally in his language. Mom felt that since Eli got the help he needed when he was so young, he is now talking and his general development is in line with his age. She feels he will be well prepared when it comes time to go to kindergarten. Eli’s mom also expressed her gratitude for her parent educator help in linking her to services, which would have been difficult for her due to her limited English. Her PE was the bridge the Mom needed to help her with her child’s needs. She would have never known he was behind or even know what to do without the help of her Parent Educator.”

*indicates that the name has been altered as a privacy protection measure.


If you’re interested in helping this program, so that you can assist individuals as they work to move forward on the path to success, check out what your gift can do:

$5 a week ($260 a year) will provide:

Hearing screenings from an Audiologist for 5 children.

$10 a week ($520 a year) will provide:

Developmental screening for 10 children.

$20 a week ($1,040 a year) will provide:

Mileage to and from a home visits for 4 families in the Rogers area