“We will do whatever it takes:” Partners in Learning’s Triple P program helps parents learn positive strategies
By Susan Shinn Turner
For the Salisbury Post
Rebecca Eddings was beyond frustrated. Her 4-year-old son, Jaxon, had been to three different child care centers — without success.
She describes Jaxon as a “very busy” 4-year-old, who can’t sit still for most activities. He has special emotional and social needs.
Eddings had worked extensively with Tonya Correll, family support specialist at Partners in Learning. Correll even toured child care centers with her. Finally, Correll took her to Partners in Learning. Eddings had hesitated only because of the distance — she and her husband both work in Concord.
But once she saw Partners in Learning, she knew that was where her son needed to be. Her in-laws, Elizabeth Hamilton and Louis and Sharon Eddings, now take Jaxon to Partners four days a week. Eddings’ husband, Jason, takes him on his day off.
But the relationship with Partners doesn’t stop there. The Eddings recently completed the Triple P parenting program. The 8-hour program — 1 hour per session — helps parents learn positive parenting strategies.
Because of Jason Eddings’ unusual work schedule with Sysco Foods, Cassie Karriker, Partners in Learning’s early intervention director, came to their house every Sunday morning for eight weeks.
“Our people are passionate about this program,” says Norma Honeycutt, Partners in Learning’s executive director. “We will do whatever it takes.”
The biggest barriers to parents attending sessions, Honeycutt explains, are typically transportation and work schedules.
“So we go to where they are,” she says.
Correll says that could be in the home, in the workplace, at the homeless shelter, at the courthouse — even at McDonald’s.
“Wherever they need to meet us is where we meet,” says Correll, who oversees the program.
She’s currently working with a single mom who has two children and is adopting two more. After Correll fixes supper for her own family, she goes to the other mom’s house — who has by then put her children to bed — and they go through the Triple P session together.
Correll receives many referrals through Partners in Learning. The five-star center serves 260 children each day at its locations at Catawba College and Novant Health Rowan Medical Center. They also serve 150 children in their homes through developmental services.
“Tonya and I had wanted to get certified for Triple P for a long time but it’s expensive,” Honeycutt notes.
Each level of accreditation costs $1,500, and there are 10 levels.
“It was totally cost prohibitive for us,” she says.
Then, in April 2016, Cabarrus Health Alliance received a grant to offer free certification. Since then, eight Partners staff members have become certified, and have also taken training in Charlotte and Durham.
“Anywhere it’s offered,” Honeycutt says, “we hit the road.”
Each accreditation level includes an intense four days of training, with certification day on the final day.
Families who take Triple P through Partners pay on a sliding scale.
Eddings says what she and her husband paid was “absolutely” worth the price.
“Overall, we definitely feel more confident as parents,” she says. “It helped us see things in a different light. We have more realistic consequences for the boys’ behavior now, and it definitely seems to be helping with both children.”
As for Jaxon, he’s thriving at Partners in Learning, his mom says. “He’s happy. He likes going to school. His teachers love him. You can tell he is loved.”
“We do have modifications for Jaxon,” Honeycutt says. “In some centers, they want your child to fit in their program, whereas we want our program to fit each child. We will do whatever it takes.”
For more information about Triple P parenting classes offered through Partners in Learning, please call Tonya Correll 704-239-4190 or email@example.com.
— A submitted note —
Tonya Correll recently received a letter from a grandparent who had completed the Triple P program. The note from Roy Surratt said in part:
Your customized training for the things that Cole and I were going through at the time was a godsend because I felt like I was at the end of my rope and beginning to question if I was going to be able to cope with the task of raising my grandson properly. You took the time to teach me the needed techniques that were fundamental to dealing with Cole’s behavior and how to use the report forms effectively in tracking progress to our goals.
You might remember our first review of the completed forms when I realized that our incident issues weren’t happening every day as I had thought. This gave me a significant boost in confidence from the start. I quickly learned that you had been through the fire yourself and I was confident that we would do the same.
You tied it all together with meaningful training that was specific to our needs and we are having a meaningful and more loving and caring relationship because of your efforts to get me up to speed with the Triple P program. Because you had been through this yourself in your own home, you recognized very quickly the problem areas for us to focus on in the training.
Please accept my heartfelt thanks for a job well done.