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  Free To Grow
  Mailman School
  of Public Health
  Columbia University
  722 West 168th Street,
  8th Floor
  New York, NY 10032

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NOTE: as of April 17, 2007, the Free to Grow program has closed.
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Parent Education
Parent education involves sharing information and skills parents need to reduce risks to their families and increase protective factors. It may take place in formal sessions (such as parent education workshops) or in informal settings (such as conversations with parents at community gatherings).

Parent education may cover a wide range of topics. It may be geared to improving skills in parent-child communication, anger management or family bonding. Other approaches focus on building family literacy and encouraging developmentally appropriate recreational activities. Parent education also may address more personal issues that can interfere with the ability to provide optimal parenting. Some parent education programs are specifically structured to address substance abuse and family violence, help family members handle stress and develop coping skills in the face of adversity.

Whatever the content, the most effective parent education is based on a family assessment that identifies the family's strengths and needs and takes place within that family's cultural context.

Group parent education can be an effective tool for reaching greater numbers of parents and conserving resources. Parents often feel less isolated when they see other families grappling with similar issues. In addition, parent education groups or classes can often become the basis for building new support systems for participants.

Click below for additional resources on parenting education strategies.

Parent Education Strategies

Family Management
  DARE To Be You
  Helping the Noncompliant Child

  Families and Schools Together
  Strengthening Families
  Families That Care - Guiding Good Choices

Schools / Education
  The Incredible Years: Parents and Children's Training

Special Populations
  Strengthening Multi-Ethnic Families and Communities
  Effective Black Parenting


copyright 2008 Free To Grow
Free To Grow is a national program supported by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation with direction and technical assistance provided by the Mailman School of Public Health of Columbia University.