Head Start serves 3-5 year-old children with some of the same services as Early Head Start. Head Start delivers services to children and families in core areas of early learning, health, and family well-being while engaging parents as partners every step of the way. On the north side, Acelero Learning provides Head Start as part of their nationwide chain of centers. On the south side, JO’S has joined with Next Door in providing Head Start for preschool children across the greater Milwaukee area.
Parents and families are offered program services to support family well-being and to achieve family goals. Programs support and strengthen parent-child relationships and engage families in the learning and development of their child.
Head Start services are available at no cost to children ages 3 to 5. Families and children experiencing homelessness, and children in the foster care system are also eligible. Additionally, Head Start services are available to children with disabilities and other special needs.
Head Start programs provide safe and healthy learning experiences indoors and outdoors. All children receive health screenings, nutritious meals, and programs connect families with medical, dental, and mental health services to ensure children are receiving the care and attention they need. Children receive support for building resiliency to cope with possible adverse effects of trauma. Families also receive mental health consultation focused on each child’s needs.
Head Start programs promote the school readiness of children ages 3 to 5. Families receive services from educators and family service staff who make scheduled home visits, conference calls, and offer parent education to assist families in meeting their personal goals to achieve self-sufficiency across a wide variety of domains. Family engagement events include mobile libraries, fresh produce giveaways, and games that lift the spirit.
Children’s readiness for school and beyond is fostered through individualized learning experiences. Through relationships with adults, play, planned and spontaneous instruction, children grow in many aspects of development. These include:
- Social Skills
- Emotional Well-being
- Language and Literacy Skills
- Science Concepts
- Cultural and Language Heritage
Additionally, Head Start works with families, school districts and other entities to facilitate a smooth transition to kindergarten for each child.