AVANCE is one of the oldest, largest and most distinguished parenting & early childhood education programs in the country.
Since 1973, AVANCE (ah-vahn-ceh) has continued to provide innovative education and family support services to predominantly Hispanic families in disadvantaged communities. Dedicated to promoting school readiness and supporting family engagement, AVANCE proudly serves as a national model and best practice of early childhood education for parents, teachers, the scientific community and general public. Derived from the Spanish word meaning, “to advance,” AVANCE is committed to unlocking America’s potential by strengthening families in impoverished communities through effective parent education and support programs.
AVANCE’S signature “Parent-Child Education Program” (PCEP) provides parents with the tools to become active participants in their child’s life while providing children zero to three years of age with the education needed to become prepared and engaged students.
This evidence-based program model is preventative, community-based and two-generation focused. The AVANCE Parent Child Education Program concentrates on parenting education, family support, early childhood development, brain development, literacy, and school readiness. The free, nine month curriculum consists of weekly parent education classes with special topics which recognize the great importance of reading, effective discipline and balanced nutrition. A unique element of the program, educational toy making, promotes teaching through play and encourages personal connections amongst participants. This activity reduces stress, which often impedes effective parenting, while promoting self-sufficiency to parents. Home visits, nutritious meals and transportation are other significant model components which play an integral role in the program’s overall success. In addition, the AVANCE Parent-Child Education Program provides parents with the opportunity to participate in adult literacy classes which better prepare them for obtaining their General Educational Development Diploma (GED), English as a Second Language (ESL) classes, or attend college.
Research shows the first three years of a child’s life are the most important developmentally. During this period, the brain creates billions of cells and the intricate system of synapses or connections responsible for vision, hearing, language and higher cognitive thinking. Ultimately, the experiences a child has during these critical years greatly impacts brain development. AVANCE recognizes these early learning experiences begin at home. Through the motto, “Parents are the first teachers and the home is the first classroom” and its well-rounded curriculum, parents are assisted in crafting a cognitively enriching environment in their homes which greatly benefits the intellectual development of the child.
AVANCE has earned much acclaim from national venerated press as the New York Times, Parade Magazine, ABC World News Tonight, Hispanic Business Magazine, MacNeil/Lehrer NewsHour, and Parent’s Magazine. Additionally, AVANCE has been included in books authored by three First Ladies, “It Takes a Village,” by Hillary Rodham Clinton, Barbara Bush’s “First Teachers” and Rosalynn Carter’s “Helping Someone with Mental Illness.” Special dignitaries have also visited AVANCE including HRH Charles, Prince of Wales.