Head Start is a federally funded child development program providing services to three – to – five year old children of low income families. Enrollment priority is given to children from families meeting the federal poverty guidelines. Head Start actively recruits and enrolls children with disabilities and is committed to providing individualized services for the total inclusion of children with professionally diagnosed disabilities. Head Start staff in partnership with parents, local agencies, and other community resource providers offer comprehensive services in the Division of Early Childhood Development and Health Services, and the Division of Family and Community Partnerships. The following component services are provided:
Head Start has provided leadership to improve early childhood education. The Head Start concept of early childhood education is a comprehensive program designed to meet the emotional, social, health, nutritional , and psychological needs of children from low income families. Children from such home environments often have health problems and a lack of self confidence that would put them at a disadvantage in public school. Head Start provides these children with the opportunity to enter public school with a “head start” willing and able to learn. Head Start provides the necessary “bridge of transition” to public school.