Head Start

Head Start and Early Head Start are programs to serve children younger than 5 years of age, pregnant women, and their families. The goal of these programs is to increase school readiness of young children in low-income families.

The programs are administered by the Head Start Bureau; the Administration on Children, Youth, and Families (ACYF); Administration for Children and Families (ACF); and the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS).

Local agencies get financial support in order to operate Head Start programs. The services offered through Head Start programs include medical, dental, mental health, nutrition, and parent involvement. All Head Start programs must adhere to certain standards to maintain operation. For more information, go to www.acf.hhs.gov/programs/ohs.

Last Updated: September 26, 2008

Author: Debby Golonka, MPH

Medical Review: Kathleen Romito, MD - Family Medicine & Michael J. Sexton, MD - Pediatrics

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