Parent involvement in Head Start and children's development: Indirect effects through parenting
The authors examined the extent to which parent involvement in Head Start programs predicted changes in both parent and child outcomes over time, using a nationally representative sample of 1,020 three-year-old children over 3 waves of the Family and Child Experiences Survey. Center policies that promote involvement predicted greater parent involvement, and parents who were more involved in Head Start centers demonstrated increased cognitive stimulation and decreased spanking and controlling behaviors. In turn, these changes in parenting behaviors were associated with gains in children's academic and behavioral skills. These findings suggest that Head Start programs should do even more to facilitate parent involvement because it can serve as an important means for promoting both parent and child outcomes. (author abstract)
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