Head Start and Early Head Start programs support the mental, social, and emotional development of children from birth to age 5. In addition to education services, programs provide children and their families with health, nutrition, social, and other services. Head Start services are responsive to each child and family's ethnic, cultural, and linguistic heritage.
Head Start encourages the role of parents as their child's first and most important teachers. Programs build relationships with families that support positive parent-child relationships, family well-being, and connections to peers and community. Head Start began as a program for preschoolers. Three- and 4-year-olds made up over 80 percent of the children served by Head Start last year.
Early Head Start serves pregnant women, infants, and toddlers. Early Head Start programs are available to the family until the child turns 3 years old and is ready to transition into Head Start or another pre-K program. Early Head Start helps families care for their infants and toddlers through early, continuous, intensive, and comprehensive services.
As Head Start programs, parents, and schools work together to promote school readiness and engage families as their children make the transition to kindergarten, schools become ready for children.
- Step 1: Goal Setting
- Step 2. Planning and Implementation
- Step 3: Assessing and Aggregation
- Step 4: Determining Priorities
To learn more about our services for your child and family, call 205.652.4477.
The Office of Head Start (OHS) defines school readiness as children being ready for school, families ready to support their children's learning, and schools ready for the children who enter their doors.
Children's school readiness is measured by the skills set out in the five domains of the Head Start Child Development and Early Learning Framework:
- Language and Literacy
- Cognition and General Knowledge
- Approaches to Learning
- Physical Development and Health
- Social and Emotional Development