What is PAT?

Parents as Teachers program is an evidence-based early childhood home visiting framework that builds strong communities, thriving families and children who are healthy, safe and ready to learn. PAT provides parenting education and support to families throughout pregnancy until their child turns five. Certified Parent Educators focus on encouraging parent/child interaction, understanding child development’s impact on child behavior and strengthening the family as a whole. This information sharing and skill development happens through home visits, group connections, screenings and resource referrals.   

Father Playing with Son

Together, these four components form a cohesive package of services with four primary goals:  

  1. Increase parent knowledge of early childhood development and improve parent practices

  2. Provide early detection of developmental delays and health issues

  3. Prevent child abuse and neglect

  4. Increase children’s school readiness and success


For more information, visit the National Parents as Teachers website at parentsasteachers.org.

High Quality Programming

The PAT model has been tested by rigorous peer-reviewed studies and shown to produce results. Affiliates follow the essential requirements of the model, which provide minimum expectations for program design, infrastructure, and service delivery. Parents as Teachers provides support for affiliates to meet those requirements as well as further quality standards that represent best practices in the field.


Affiliates undergo a quality endorsement process every five years.  Those affiliates that meet all of the Essential Requirements and complete a comprehensive self-study that demonstrates they are meeting at least 75% of the Quality Standards are awarded a Blue Ribbon.  The can keep this honor for up to five years, as long as the affiliate continues to meet the Essential Requirements each year.

Programs that earn the Blue Ribbon are recognized by the National Center as exemplary affiliates, delivering high-quality services to children and families.

As of June 30, 2020 there are 14  Blue Ribbon affiliate programs in North Carolina:

Children & Youth Partnership PAT for Dare County (NC)

Duplin County Partnership for Children  (NC)

Family Support PAT/Iredell County Partnership for Young Children (NC)

Henderson County Parents as Teachers/Children & Family Resource Center of Henderson Co. (NC)

Hoke County Parents as Teachers (NC)

Imprints Cares (NC)

Martin/Pitt Parents as Teachers/Martin/Pitt Partnership for Children  (NC)

Partnership for Children of Wayne County (NC)

Project Enlightenment PAT/Wake County Public Schools (NC)

Region A Partnership for Children  (NC)

Rockingham County Partnership for Children (NC)​

Smart Start of Brunswick County/North Carolina Partnerships for Children (NC)

Smart Start of Davie County (NC)

The Coalition for Families in Lee County/Lee County Partnership for Children (NC)

Click HERE to find a PAT program affiliate near you.