According to Seay et al (2014), “positive parenting is a continual relationship of a parent(s) and a child or children that includes caring, teaching, leading, communicating, and providing for the needs of a child consistently and unconditionally.” Evidence-based parenting interventions are programs that have a “strong track record in improving parent and child outcomes “ (Weisz and Kazdin, 2010).

Scope in Pediatrics

  • The effectiveness of evidence-based parenting interventions that promote the emotional well-being of children from birth through adolescence has been well documented. Yet, participation rates in such programs are low. Pediatricians can partner with multiple stakeholders in order to
    • encourage participation of families and
    • implement evidence-based parenting interventions.
  • Second generation children (Americans born of immigrant parents) are at higher risk for emotional and behavioral health disparities than first-generation youth.

Teaching Points

  • Evidence-based parenting interventions
    • have the potential to optimize the well-being of all youth, including those growing up in immigrant families
    • are effective in promoting positive parenting in diverse populations, including immigrant families
    • enables parents to promote positive childhood experiences (eg, encourage conversations about bullying, emotions) which can also help decrease future mental health problems
  • Every immigrant population is different and thus it is important to ask and listen to the community regarding how to best address mental health issues.
  • Community-based participatory research is a culturally humble approach in which pediatricians can partner with local partners to engage diverse populations in identifying culturally congruent solutions that are evidence-based.


For Physicians

Related AAP Policy

Providing Care for Children in Immigrant Families 

Related AAP Resources

Bright Futures - Building Positive Parenting Skills Across the Ages 
Immigrant Child Health Toolkit: Mental and Emotional Health 
CATCH Planning, Implementation and Resident Grants  

Other Resources

Blueprints for Healthy Youth Development 

Toolkit for Prevention of Behavioral Health Disparities in an Immigrant Community 

Collaborative on Healthy Parenting in Primary Care

Perrin EC, Leslie LK, Boat T. Parenting as Primary Prevention. JAMA Pediatr. 2016;170(7):637–638. doi:10.1001/jamapediatrics.2016.0225 

Perrin EC, Sheldrick RC, McMenamy JM, Henson BS, Carter AS. Improving parenting skills for families of young children in pediatric settings: a randomized clinical trial. JAMA Pediatr. 2014 Jan;168(1):16-24. doi: 10.1001/jamapediatrics.2013.2919. PMID: 24190691. 

References/Additional Reading

Asmussen K. The evidence-based parenting practitioner’s handbook. Routledge, New York, NY, 2011.

Belhadj Kouider E, Koglin U, Petermann F. Emotional and behavioral problems in migrant children and adolescents in American countries: a systematic review. J Immigr Minor Health. 2015;17(4):1240–1258pmid:24851820

Javier JR, Coffey DM, Palinkas LA, Kipke MD, Miranda J, Schrager SM. Promoting enrollment in parenting programs among a filipino population: a randomized trial. Pediatrics. 2019; 143(2). PMID: 30679379.

Javier JR. The use of an educational video to increase suicide awareness and enrollment in parenting interventions among Filipinos. Asian Am J Psychol. 2018 Dec; 9(4):327-333. PMID: 31565181.

Lonczak HS. What is Positive Parenting? A Look at the Research and Benefits. Accessed June 29, 2021.

Javier JR, Reyes A, Coffey DM, et al. Recruiting filipino immigrants in a randomized controlled trial promoting enrollment in an evidence-based parenting intervention. J Immigr Minor Health. 2019 Apr; 21(2):324-331. PMID: 29774510.

Seay A, Freysteinson WM, McFarlane J. Positive parenting. Nurs Forum. 2014 Jul-Sep;49(3):200-8. doi: 10.1111/nuf.12093. Epub 2014 Jun 5. PMID: 24898152.

For Families

AAP Resources for Families on

Creating Positive Experiences for Your Infant 
Creating Positive Experiences for School-Age Children 
Creating Positive Experience for Teens 

Other Resources

Circle of Security International: Early Intervention Program for Parents & Children 
The Incredible Years 
Positive Parenting Tips 
Triple P – Positive Parenting Program 

Positive Parenting. Philippine Embassy in Washington DC, USA. Live February 13, 2021. Available at: (5200 views as of 4/27/21). 

Spotlight on Children. Live Interview with So Jannelle TV, International. Available at: (947 views as on 4/27/21). 


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Special Acknowledgment

The AAP gratefully acknowledges support for the Pediatric Mental Health Minute in the form of an educational grant from SOBI.