Early Head Start is a comprehensive child development program which serves children birth to age 3, pregnant women, and their families. It is a child-focused program and has the overall goal of increasing the social competence of young children in low-income families. “Social competence” refers to the child’s everyday effectiveness in dealing with both his or her present environment, and later responsibilities in school and life. Social competence takes into account the inter-relatedness of social, emotional, cognitive, and physical development.
Early Head Start Services are family centered, following the tenets that children develop in the context of their family and culture, and that parents are respected as the primary educators and nurturers of their children. Early Head Start offers family members opportunities and support for growth and change, believing that people can identify their own strengths, needs, and interests, and are capable of finding solutions.
The Policy Council at the grantee agency level and the Policy Committee at the delegate agency level have policy-making authority, and therefore, are governed by locally determined by-laws that ensure clarity and consistency in function and purpose.
Parent Committees provide every parent of an enrolled child the opportunity to assist in the development of activities that address their interests and needs, and that support the education and healthy development of their children.
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