NISD Parents as Teachers professional named Parent Educator of the Year
Parents as Teachers (PAT) named Northwest ISD’s Jamie Castro Rodriguez — an early childhood educator with the district’s Family Involvement program — as a 2022 Parent Educator of the Year at their recent conference in Denver.
Rodriguez was selected from more than 8,000 PAT home visitors throughout the United States, further proving her intentional service directly supports Northwest ISD children and their families. NISD parent educators are trained in PAT’s home visiting curriculum, making personal home visits to help new mothers, fathers and caregivers of young children with essential parenting skills.
“Accepting this award at the PAT conference was such an honor,” Rodriguez said. “I want to thank Parents as Teachers for recognizing the work that I do helping young mothers and fathers prepare their children for future success. This award reminds me of why I do what I do for the families we serve.”
The Parent Educator of the Year Award is set apart by the professionally trained specialists who help new parents strengthen parenting skills to engage and support children’s health, learning and development. The award also recognizes the outstanding contributions educators make to children and families and honors those who show exemplary work supporting the PAT mission.
“The care and attention Jamie puts into her visit planning demonstrates respect for the district’s families, their time and her own commitment to the program,” said Cynthia Elliott, Northwest ISD’s Parents and Teachers supervisor. “Jamie desires to grow and learn on a daily basis in order to best serve her families.”
PAT — a Missouri-based non-profit organization — is designed to promote child and maternal health, preparing young children for first-time school entry. The program also aids to prevent child abuse and neglect by strengthening families through family engagement and impactful parenting.
Born and raised in Puerto Rico, cultural competency and respect for all families is one of Rodriguez’s greatest strengths. Holding a Bachelor of Arts degree in Elementary Education from the University of Puerto Rico and as a former classroom teacher, Rodriguez has excelled as a parent educator within the district for the past four years.
“Jamie is intentional in understanding the impact culture has on a family,” said Elliott. “She utilizes verbal greetings in four languages when greeting the families she knows speak a language other than English. Her families absolutely respect and adore her!”
During the nomination process for the award, letters of recommendation came pouring into the district on behalf of Rodriguez, showcasing her uncompromising dedication to improving the lives of children and families in and around North Texas.
“Ms. Jamie met my son with open arms,” said Brandi Redman Murphy, a parent currently enrolled in the district’s at-home program. “Our son has made a complete 180-change when it comes to his social, cognitive and problem-solving skills thanks to Ms. Jamie and the PAT program.”
Nearly 1,400 early childhood professionals attended the PAT conference in Denver. For additional information regarding Northwest ISD’s Parents as Teachers program, please visit the district’s website.