FCSN // Pathways for Parents

Photo of Diverse Family- parents with two  children 

Pathways for Parents


Who We Are…

Pathways for Parents provides information, guidance and referral to parents who receive services from the Massachusetts Department of Children and Families (DCF), to promote effective parent participation in their child’s education, enable access to emotional and behavioral support services, and strengthen supportive parenting skills.

How We Can Help…

The Pathways for Parents Coordinator can provide: Direct communication and support via phone or e-mail Free trainings and presentations through collaboration with community based groups.  Trainings topics include:

  • parent advocacy and effective communication
  • supportive parenting techniques to manage youth with emotional or behavioral issues
  • obtaining and making the most of supports and services
  • other specific topics of interest at the request of individual groups.

Fact Sheets on a variety of topics related to education, emotional and behavioral health and other youth issues, including: special education services, 504 Plan, evaluations and testing, treatment options, CHINS, etc. Referrals to community based groups and agencies where parents can make social and cultural connections and participate in programs such as: adult education, adult sports and recreation programs, parenting skills education, parent support groups, grandparent programs, youth recreation clubs or sports, toddler play groups or other programs or services. Referrals to specialized advocacy organizations that provide support to parents during challenging times while dealing with difficult or complex issues, such as:

  • Parenting a Troubled Child
  • Youth Emotional, Behavioral or Mental Health Issues
  • Youthful Offenders
  • Residential or Foster Placement
  • General Education Issues
  • Special Education Supports & Services
  • Health Care Services
  • Special Health Care Needs

Information and Support are Free to Parents

Parents have said…

“My son is not just a typical teenager; everything is extreme.”
Pathways for Parents (PFP) can make referrals to organizations that educate, encourage and support parents through challenging times.

“Parents don’t know what they don’t know.”
PFP informs and guides parents to access information, supports, services and resources from community organizations, groups and providers, state agencies and federal programs.

“I didn’t know why my daughter acted the way she did; no one ever said anything about mental health.”
PFP can provide information and guidance about youth emotional and behavioral health disorders, treatments, medications and support services.

“Even though he tried really hard, my son’s learning disability caused him to fail in school.”
PFP refers parents to free workshops about special education guidelines, services and a child’s rights.

“Sometimes life is really difficult, but it gets better when you work at solving the problems.”
PFP provides information and ideas for parents to combine with their own knowledge and expertise in order to manage real-life issues and dilemmas.

“You can’t change anyone but yourself, and the choice to change is yours.”

Pathways for Parents:

  • informs, educates and supports parents
  • respects culture, values and abilities
  • supports active parent involvement
  • encourages positive change

“You never know what activity, suggestion or story will inspire a child’s future.”

  • activities and games strengthen relationships and build skills
  • Conversations and shared experiences teach life lessons and instill values.
  • Stories of family history and traditions helps build identity and family bonds
  • Being respectful and responsible promotes respect and responsibility in others.

How To Get Help…

Eileen Sandberg
Phone: 617-399-8312
Fax: (617) 241-0330
E-mail: esandberg@fcsn.org