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Top marks for The National Academy of Parenting Practitioners' research programme

01 May 2009

The Institute of Psychiatry’s Professor Stephen Scott also Director of Research at the National Academy for Parenting Practitioners has received news of the parenting academy’s recent assessment of their research programme which has been assessed as ‘distinguished, highly promising and clearly cost-effective’ by an independent committee of eminent scientists led by Professor John Weisz of the Department of Psychology at Harvard university, and Professor Frances Gardner of Oxford university’s Department of Social Policy and Social Work.

According to the Scientific Advisory Committee’s report: ‘The government is getting a bargain – an unusually sophisticated programme of research with unusual promise of benefitting society, provided to the government at less than the actual cost of doing the research.’

  • Particular areas of the research programme highlighted by the report include:
  • The SAFE study of Functional Family Therapy, considered to have a ‘genuine prospect of leading to reduced youth offending’.
  • The Commissioning Toolkit and evaluation of parenting programmes – ‘these seem likely to lead to a focus on and changes in the work of parenting practitioners’, says the report
  • The Helping Children Achieve trial, with its potential to improve outcomes for children and the effects of intervention in two contrasting areas
  • New interventions for particular groups in three other studies: the project for high need families, the project for looked after children and the personalisation project.

The report concludes by saying ‘The [parenting academy’s research agenda holds] the potential to be of significant benefit to parents and children, and in turn to the society as a whole.’

The National Academy for Parenting Practitioners was set up in October 2007. The founding organisations were the Family and Parenting Institute, Parenting UK and King’s College London. The parenting academy is now a separately constituted, charitable company limited by guarantee.

Professor Scott is Professor of Child Health and Behaviour at the Institute of Psychiatry, King’s College London.



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