Evaluation of the Parenting and Paternity Awareness p.a.p.a. Curriculum.

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Cynthia Osborne, Ph.D.
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Most state child support agencies have responded to the increases in teen and nonmarital births with the traditional offer of paternity establishment and child support enforcement services after the birth of the child. The Child Support Division of the Texas Office of the Attorney General (OAG) has taken the innovative step of developing a number of educational and outreach efforts that reach youth and young adults before a pregnancy occurs.The leading example of the OAG’s efforts is the Parenting and Paternity Awareness (p.a.p.a.)Curriculum; p.a.p.a. is a school-based curriculum that sends a strong message to adolescents on how to optimally sequence their lives: complete an education, choose a career, enter into a healthy marriage, and then begin having children. The 14-hour curriculum is designed to teach students about the rights and responsibilities of parenthood and paternity establishment, the realities of having a child, and the elements of a healthy relationship.To determine the impact that the p.a.p.a. Curriculum has on students' knowledge and attitudes, as well as the level of support for the program from teachers and principals, the LBJ School of Public Affairs at the University of Texas at Austin conducted a two year, comprehensive evaluation of the program.

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