Strengthening Children's Lives Through Science and Community Engagement

Return to Research Categories

Preventing Maltreatment PI and
Duration Sponsor
Preventing Child Maltreatment through a Cellar Phone Technology-based Parent Program 

Carta, J.


Collboration: Juniper Gardens, University of Kansas & University of Notre Dame

Over 2 million cases of child maltreatment are reported each year in the United States , and of these, child neglect remains the largest single category. A disproportionate number of cases of neglect occur with mothers who often have their own personal histories of abuse and delinquency. This behavioral pattern is frequently passed on from mother to child resulting in a vicious cycle in the transfer of delinquency and inappropriate parenting across generations. A number of home visitation programs have addressed this problem by providing parents with specific skills about how to interact with their children in more positive ways (Gershater-Molker, et al., 2003; Olds et al., 1997). These programs often struggle to demonstrate long- term effectiveness because of difficulties in maintaining high-risk parents’ participation and high levels of fidelity in program implementation.

This two-site project aims to test the effects of cellular phone technology enhancements on an existing parenting program (Planned Activities Training from Project Safecare). The project employs a 3-group design with random assignment of parents to one of three groups: Planned Activities Training (PAT), Cell Phone Enhanced PAT, or a Control Group. A unique strength of the proposed study is that it will recruit one cohort of participants from an ongoing longitudinal descriptive study of child neglect in which parenting and environmental risk and protective factors have been tracked since children’s birth (n = 180). A second cohort of high-risk parents (n=180) will be recruited from Head Start programs in the same communities as the original cohort. Families in both cohorts will be enrolled when children are 4 years of age and will be assessed prior to intervention, immediately following intervention, and 6 months and 12 months later to examine intervention effects on child maltreatment, parenting, and children’s behavior. In addition, in each of the intervention groups, data will be collected on program fidelity and intervention dosage, retention, parent engagement and follow-through with procedures in the intervention; social validity; as well as cost-benefit analysis. We expect that knowledge generated through this study will aid in the improvement of parenting interventions focused on reducing child maltreatment and increasing cost-effectiveness.


What's New
Job Opportunities
  • Assistant Researcher: We are seeking a part-time to full-time Assistant Researcher for a research project that focuses on developing and implementing a coaching model for an elementary classroom management intervention. Approximately 4 school districts and 20 elementary schools with students at risk for school failure will participate in the project and contribute to the development of the program. For more information and to apply, go hereKU is an EO/AAE.
  • Graduate Research Assistant: We are seeking 1-3 graduate research assistant(s) with studies or background in applied behavioral science, special education, psychology, school psychology or related field. The primary purpose of this project is to support high-needs elementary students with the CW-FIT Program (a classroom management intervention) while building for scale and sustainability by developing a district coaching model. For more information and to apply, go hereKU is an EO/AAE.
  • Postdoctoral Researcher: The Postdoctoral Program at the Juniper Gardens Children’s Project (JGCP) seeks a postdoctoral researcher. The purpose of the proposed project is to provide a Quantitative Postdoctoral Researcher with experience that will enable them to conduct high quality behavioral, educational, and special education research in childhood settings. The goal of the training program is to prepare quantitative researchers with the collaborative and methodological skills necessary to conduct next generation of research. For more information and to apply go hereKU is an EO/AAE.
  • Postdocotral Researcher: The Postdoctoral Research Program at the Juniper Gardens Children’s Project (JGCP) is recruiting two postdoctoral researchers interested in developing expertise in carrying out community-engaged research to develop and implement evidence-based practices focused on early intervention, early care, and early education settings. The postdoctoral position is a full-time (100% FTE), 2 years, research-dedicated fellowship.  For more information and to apply, go hereKU is an EO/AAE.
Training Opportunities
  • We will be offering a TPITOS certification training workshop in Kansas City, Kansas at the Juniper Gardens Children’s Project on January 30-31, 2020.​ The TPITOS™ is a tool for ensuring that infant–toddler teachers are implementing the Pyramid Model for Promoting Social Emotional Competence in Infants and Young Children with fidelity. Email for more information or register for the workshop by clicking the link.
Latest News
RT @UnivOfKansas : Our five love languages: ❤️ Words of affirmation: Rock Chalk! 💙 Acts of service: I'll carry you up 14th Street. ❤️ Receiv…