The Parent-Child Home Program Jeffco is a special initiative of the Jeffco Schools Foundation in Jefferson County, CO. PCHP Jeffco's mission is to positively impact school readiness and long-term learning for two- and three-year olds from high-risk or vulnerable families.

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Early Literacy Specialists

Well-trained and supervised paraprofessionals visit families twice weekly, 30 minutes each time. There are at least 92 visits with each family over two school years. The early literacy specialist models reading, playing, and conversation activities.


A Gift each Week

Each week the specialist brings a gift of a new book or toy. But the biggest gift is the sharing of words. In low-income homes only 13 million words are spoken, compared with 42 million in middle-class homes by age four.

Parents = First Teachers

This program provides each parent with the skills to be the child's first teacher. The bond sticks and lasts through the school years. Everyone benefits. There is also workforce development as parents may become early literacy specialists, learning computer skills, utilizing educational strategies, and earning more than minimum wages.

Prepared for Success

Tracked as a group, the children:

  • Develop the cognitive and social-emotional skills children need for school success.
  • Enter school as prepared as their middle-
    class peers.
  • Are 50% less likely to need special education classes.
  • Perform at or above state and national norms thoughtout elementary and middle school.
  • Graduate from high school at the same rate as middle-class students (30% higher than the control group in a study.}

50-year Track Record

For 50 years PCHP National has served vulnerable families among those who are:

  • living in poverty
  • non-native English speaking
  • low literacy or illiterate
  • living in isolated rural or urban areas
  • recent immigrants
  • teen parents, single moms or dads, or grandparents raising grandchildren

Dr. Todd Risley, co-author of the landmark book Meaningful Differences in the Everyday Experiences of Young American Children, stated:

This program [PCHP] arguablly has the best cost-benefit ratio of any literacy program. Its years of data demonstrate that it actually changes parental behaviors... and prompts parents to foster language development in their children.

 Dr. Risley is Emeritus Professor of Psychology at the University of Alaska and a Senior Scientist at the Schiefelbusch Institute for Life Span Studies at the Universitty of Kansas. He has authored more than 100 professional articles, as well as five books and monographs, which have been widely cited and reprinted.