Head Start is federally funded program for children 3 to 5 years old and it focuses on preparing children for entering school. It benefits your community in various ways, and it assists your family in the important areas of health, nutrition, socialization, and educational skills.
History, Focus, and Enrollment
Head Start was originally a short-term summer school catch-up program that began in 1965 to help disadvantaged children enter elementary school with necessary skills to be successful. It was expanded by the Head Start Act of 1981 and revised/reauthorized in 2007 and falls under the direction of US Department of Health and Human Services.
To enroll your child for Head Start you will need to your local program and follow its guidelines.
Objectives and Goals
The Head Start program focuses on the educational, health, social, and nutritional needs of preschoolers of low income families. It provides full-day and full-year services to assist parents who are currently enrolled in training/educational programs or who are employed.
The objectives of local Head Start programs generally include:
The long term goals include:
Advantages of the Program
According various studies, the program has helped children to:
This program's benefits have been found to generalize out into the greater community by influencing other educational, economic, health care, and social service institutions.
Head Start has been criticized in recent years because the scholastic gains made in early school years by children who have been in the program eventually dissipate as children who did not attend begin to catch up. Some feel that if the schools in lower income areas were improved, the gains would continue. It can also be said that entering school with better skills would give a child a more positive initial experience.
Northwestern University researchers have found that parents of children who were in the program from age three were encouraged to make educational improvements of their own. This is particularly true of persons who already have some college, and they are able and motivated as result of the program to go back to school. This in turn could motivate parents to seek expanded educational opportunities for their children as they grow older.
The long-term impacts of attending Head Start programs on children has shown to be:
In short, Head Start is a beneficial program for your child and the rest of your family. It will help your child begin school with the necessary skills to blend in with the other children, and will help them on into adulthood. It will give you support to obtain your educational goals. In these ways, it benefits the community as a whole. Contact a Head Start program like Child Focus Inc for more information.Share