Impact of ParentCorps
The impact of ParentCorps has been evaluated in two randomized controlled trials, the most rigorous method for testing programs, and a cost-benefit analysis. The following are key results:
- ParentCorps has meaningful and sustained impacts on academic achievement, mental health, and physical health, one of very few early childhood programs with demonstrated impact on all three critical areas of development.
- Children in pre-K programs enhanced with ParentCorps performed better on academic achievement tests and on teacher ratings of academic performance through second grade. In particular, ParentCorps led to a 24 percent lower risk of reading below grade level through second grade.
- ParentCorps reduces mental health problems, including both emotional and behavioral problems at school, by 50 percent through second grade.
- ParentCorps reduces the prevalence of obesity by 50 percent through second grade.
- In the long term, the prevention of these cross-domain problems in elementary school produces a 4:1 return on investment over the life course.
In addition, ParentCorps impacts adult capacity to support children’s early learning and development in critical ways:
- Parents showed increases in knowledge and use of effective practices, such as setting clear expectations and positive reinforcement, and were more involved in children’s learning from pre-K through second grade.
- Teachers showed more nurturing teacher-student interactions and effective behavior management, and reported greater use of effective family engagement strategies.
- Parents reported significantly less difficulty contacting teachers.
Support for ParentCorps
Several government and nonprofit organizations endorse ParentCorps as an evidence-based early childhood intervention.
Blueprints for Healthy Youth Development, considered the most rigorous registry of evidence-based positive youth development programs, awarded ParentCorps the highest rating for evidence with suggestions about using Head Start funding for financing implementation.
The National Center on Parent, Family, and Community Engagement, part of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, includes ParentCorps in its Compendium of Parenting Interventions, a resource that helps schools, early childhood programs, community-based organizations, and other stakeholders understand the evidence behind parenting interventions for families of young children.
The nonprofit, nonpartisan research center Child Trends highlights ParentCorps as an evidence-based intervention that improves outcomes for young children.
The Parenting Curricula Review Database, published by the Office of Head Start Early Childhood Learning and Knowledge Center, lists ParentCorps as one of 28 highlighted center-based parenting curricula. ParentCorps meets the highest level of evidence in this database designed to assist Head Start and Early Head Start programs to choose a research-based parenting curricula to meet the Head Start program performance standards.