Help Increase Children’s Chances of Upward Mobility by Improving the Quality of Parenting
Parents are major contributors to the outcomes of their children. The quality of parenting can be connected to many outcomes–not just the untoward outcomes that result from trauma-inducing parenting but also the positive educational and economic outcomes from excellent parenting. Yet, most of the interventions we have–even including Early Head Start and Head Start–only support parents they do not educate parents in a continuous way on more effective, stimulating, and responsive parenting. Social workers and other professionals can help develop more widely available parenting programs that are accessible to a broad array of parents to help them to make a greater and more efficient investment in their parenting. The result, according to a recent paper by Reeves and Howard that reviews research on parenting and models the impact that making the weakest parents better can have on the life course is an important, if modest, improvements in educational outcomes, age at child bearing, and criminal justice involvement.