Why Choose Head Start?

Head Start is a preschool program that is designed to give children a "Head Start" on their education so that when they enter the school system they are ready to learn. Our preschool program recognizes that children are only little once and their childhood should be celebrated.

Head Start offers the following:

  • High qualified teachers and aides

  • Curriculum that helps children grow academically

  • Provides essential school readiness skills

  • Small class sizes

  • Children do not have to be potty trained

  • Free to income eligible families

  • Quality learning materials

  • Half day and full day options to meet individual children and family needs

  • Provides breakfast, lunch and snack free

  • Assist families with meeting dental and physical requirements

  • Behavioral Consultant on staff

  • Nutritionist available for consultation

  • Family Service Worker to help meet individual needs of each family

  • Fun evening activities for the entire family

  • Parent/Teacher Conferences

  • Parents can volunteer in their child's classroom at anytime

  • Active voice in the program

  • Provides a smooth transition into kindergarten

  • Busing available

  • Seat belts and harness on the bus

  • Focusing on the entire family by encouraging parental involvement in your child's education and understands that you are your child's most important teacher.


Parental Involvement

We Encourage Parental Involvement

There are several ways families can get involved in promoting the child's school readiness at home, in the Head Start program and in the community. ICHS encourages families to become actively engaged in their child's education, by providing opportunities for the family to participate in parent and child activities in the classroom, at the center and in the community.

All these activities are planned to include an educational opportunity that is interactive and fun for both adults and children. These activities are available for all Head Start families and are scheduled for day, evening and weekends to allow for the maximum participation.

Indiana County Head Start encourages all families to become involved in the program. Our basic philosophy is "Parents are the primary educators of their children."

Families can get involved by:

  • Attending Head Start family activities and functions

  • Riding the bus, volunteering in the classroom, and assisting in the kitchen

  • Attending parent activities/trainings, and parent/teacher planning times

  • Serving in the parent group, on a special committee or on the Policy Council

  • Providing trainings for other parents or the children

Parents and Families involved in Head Start:

  • Are more knowledgeable about their child's learning and development

  • Are more likely to continue involvement when their child enters the public school system

  • Have increased involvement with their children

  • Have increased self-confidence

  • Are more aware of community resources

  • Feel they have more control over their lives

Pennsylvania Keystone STARS Designation

All of our Head Start classrooms have a STAR4 (Standards, training/professional development, assistance, resource, and support) designation.

The Pennsylvania Office of Child Development and Early Learning (OCDEL) has awarded our three Head Start centers a STAR 4 designation, the highest level achievable in Keystone Stars, Pennsylvania’s Quality Rating & Improvement System.

Keystone STARS is a quality rating system that promotes quality improvement in early learning and development programs and school-age child care. A Keystone STARS designation informs parents that their children are in a safe, respectful environment in which they are learning new things every day to support their current and future successes in school and in life.