Early Head Start

Early Head Start is a home based program which helps parents be the first and best influence on their children.

Early Head Start is a year round and comprehensive early childhood development home visiting program that is designed to reinforce and respond to the needs of individual infants and toddlers along with their families.

Early Head Start Families are supported by an 1 1/2 hours weekly home visit and bi-weekly group socialization. EHS strives to promote healthy prenatal outcomes for pregnant women, enhance the development of very young children ages 0-3 years, and support healthy family functioning.

Early Head Start Family Educators and parents choose a topic or activity to work on each week. The family educator shows the parent what to do and the parent teaches it to the child. One goal of a family educator is to help each parent be the best teacher in their child's life.

Family educators can link a family to other agencies for basic needs like utilities and food, job training, child care for working parents, and a number of other concerns.

The Health Specialist, a registered nurse, visits the home from time to time. The Health Specialist helps families to find medical and dental care and makes sure infants and toddlers are receiving their immunizations on a regular basis.

The Health Specialist servers as a resource to parents on special topics such as nutrition, safety, infant and toddler health, as well as, mental wellness for the whole family.


Home visits focus on the following areas of school readiness:


PARENT-CHILD ATTACHMENT

To promote positive parent-child relationships, a Parent Educator might:

  • Bring helpful information / activities about bonding with your child

  • Model ways to interact with children-for example; assisting you in reading with your child

  • Model talking with your child-for example; describing what your child is doing: “You stacked four blocks. Great!”

  • Assist you in observing your child’s strengths and give you tips for developing them

  • Connect families with one or more of our Certified Educators of Infant Massage


SERVICES TO EXPECTANT MOTHERS & FAMILIES

Parent Educators and our EHS staff can also perform home visits or assist in providing support/transportation to prenatal visits. Services include:

  • Education on fetal development

  • Education on nutrition and breastfeeding

  • Assistance in preparing siblings for baby’s arrival

  • Assistance in preparing a birthing plan

  • Education on the effects of smoking, alcohol, and drug use during pregnancy

  • Assistance in identifying emotional supports and education on postpartum depression and anxiety

  • Home visit by a licensed nurse within 14 days of birth


CHILD DEVELOPMENT

Parent Educators can talk about:

  • What is typical for a child’s age

  • What to expect next in your child’s development

  • Preparing for preschool

  • Positive discipline strategies

  • Common childhood issues like sleeping or toilet training


CHILD HEALTH AND SAFETY

Parent Educators will provide information about the following:

    • The importance-of well-baby check-ups, immunizations, and early oral health care

    • Recognizing a baby’s cues, such as knowing when your baby is hungry

    • Proper childhood nutrition, including breastfeeding support

    • Ways to childproof your home


PARENT SUPPORT

Parent Educators or other EHS staff may assist parents in setting goals such as:

  • Job search or education goals

  • Stress management and coping with problems

  • Budgeting

  • Transportation to Playtimes or Medical appointments

PARENT-CHILD ATTACHMENT

To promote positive parent-child relationships, a Parent Educator might:

  • Bring helpful information / activities about bonding with your child

  • Model ways to interact with children-for example; assisting you in reading with your child

  • Model talking with your child-for example; describing what your child is doing: “You stacked four blocks. Great!”

  • Assist you in observing your child’s strengths and give you tips for developing them

  • Connect families with one or more of our Certified Educators of Infant Massage


SERVICES TO EXPECTANT MOTHERS & FAMILIES

Parent Educators and our EHS staff can also perform home visits or assist in providing support/transportation to prenatal visits. Services include:

  • Education on fetal development

  • Education on nutrition and breastfeeding

  • Assistance in preparing siblings for baby’s arrival

  • Assistance in preparing a birthing plan

  • Education on the effects of smoking, alcohol, and drug use during pregnancy

  • Assistance in identifying emotional supports and education on postpartum depression and anxiety

  • Home visit by a licensed nurse within 14 days of birth


CHILD DEVELOPMENT

Parent Educators can talk about:

  • What is typical for a child’s age

  • What to expect next in your child’s development

  • Preparing for preschool

  • Positive discipline strategies

  • Common childhood issues like sleeping or toilet training


CHILD HEALTH AND SAFETY

Parent Educators will provide information about the following:

    • The importance-of well-baby check-ups, immunizations, and early oral health care

    • Recognizing a baby’s cues, such as knowing when your baby is hungry

    • Proper childhood nutrition, including breastfeeding support

    • Ways to childproof your home


PARENT SUPPORT

Parent Educators or other EHS staff may assist parents in setting goals such as:

  • Job search or education goals

  • Stress management and coping with problems

  • Budgeting

  • Transportation to Playtimes or Medical appointments

What are parents saying about the program?

"The biggest reason I enjoy the Head Start program is because of the involvement parents are encouraged to have with their children and the rest of the children while in school. I spend around 2 hours everyday in Kathy's classroom and EVERYDAY I leave with a smile on my face."

"I LOVE how compassionate, hands on, and caring both her an Heather are with each child's individual needs and personality. I am very thankful to have had the opportunity to be introduced to this program and ALL of the people who are involved in it."