United States Department of Health and Human Services, Administration for Children and Families (ACF), Office of Head Start (OHS)
07/31/17 11:59 PM ET for online submissions; 4:30 PM ET for paper applications (with Exemption from Required Electronic Application).
Grants to St. Landry Parish, Louisiana nonprofits, for-profits, government agencies, and IHEs for the provision comprehensive child development services for economically disadvantaged families. The primary purpose of this program is to ensure that young children are ready to enter school.
Program Background and Purpose:
The Head Start and Early Head Start programs provide grants to public and private non-profit and for-profit agencies to provide comprehensive child development services to predominately economically disadvantaged children and families. Head Start's primary purpose is to prepare children to be ready for school. In fiscal year (FY) 1995, the Early Head Start program was established to serve pregnant women and children from birth to 3 years of age in recognition of the mounting evidence that the earliest years matter a great deal to children's growth and development. Since its beginning in 1965, Head Start has served more than 32 million children and their families. In FY 2014, Head Start was funded to serve 927,275 children and families; of these, nearly 117,000 participants were served in Early Head Start programs. There are approximately 1,700 Head Start grantees, including about 980 grantees providing Early Head Start.
Head Start and Early Head Start programs must provide directly or through referral, early, continuous, intensive, and comprehensive child development and family support services that will enhance the physical, social, emotional, and intellectual development of participating children in the key domains of physical development and health, social, and emotional development, approaches to learning, language and literacy, and cognition and general knowledge. Programs support parent engagement in their roles as their children’s teachers and advocates, and help parents move toward self-sufficiency. Head Start promotes school readiness by addressing the key domains of language, literacy, mathematics, science, and social and emotional development.
Head Start and Early Head Start programs emphasize family engagement because of the critical role that parents play in supporting their children's healthy development and school success. Effective programs engage parents in their children's development and learning, and help parents make progress toward their own educational, literacy, and employment goals. Programs also emphasize the significant involvement of parents in the administration of local Head Start and Early Head Start programs. These leadership opportunities are designed to strengthen skills that parents can apply to improving their family's economic well-being and to becoming more effective advocates for their children.
Applicants are encouraged to use this opportunity to design a model of services and program options that best meet the needs of children and families over time, including helping to meet the child care needs of parents who are either working, in school, or in job training.
Given the need for continuity of care to support the rapid development in the earliest years, the OHS expects that grantees will serve pregnant women, infants, and toddlers for at least 1,380 annual hours, unless approved for a locally-designed option as outlined in 45 CFR § 1302.24. OHS expects that grantees will implement a full-year model that will require per-child costs that, in most circumstances, will be higher than the costs needed to provide part-year services.
ACF is interested in new and innovative models that provide continuous and seamless services for pregnant women, children from birth to age 5, and their families. These models should be designed to be responsive to community needs, be evidence-based or evidence-informed, and maximize the extent to which the Early Head Start and Head Start resources, in collaboration with other partners and early childhood education providers, can prepare children and their families for school.
Head Start and/or Early Head Start programs must:
-Provide high-quality early education services that promote the physical, health, social, and emotional development approaches to learning, language and literacy, and cognition and general knowledge of young children during the early years;
-Provide services through appropriate program options: center-based, home-based, family child care, combination option, or with the approval of OHS, a locally designed option;
-Ensure continuity of services and smooth transitions between program options when the needs of families change;
-Assist enrolled pregnant women to access comprehensive prenatal and postpartum care through referrals;
-Provide pregnant women and other family members, as appropriate, with prenatal education on fetal development;
-Provide information on the benefits of breast-feeding to all pregnant and nursing mothers;
-Provide arrangements for nursing mothers who choose to breast-feed in center-based programs;
-Provide services in a culturally and linguistically responsive manner to support the home environment of the child;
-Provide early opportunities for children to grow and develop in warm, nurturing, and inclusive environments;
-Recruit, train, and supervise high-quality staff to ensure the kinds of warm and continuous relationships and stimulating interactions between caregivers and children that are crucial to learning and development;
-Provide professional development plans for each staff member to ensure that each staff person maintains qualifications for his/her position, including meeting all requirements for staff working with the particular age group;
-Ensure that the level of services provided to families responds to their needs and circumstances, including appropriate screening for all children and referral for children with documented behavioral and/or developmental problems;
-Ensure that all enrolled participants receive health, mental health, nutritional, and oral health screenings and services, and follow-up evaluation and treatment.
-Ensure that services provided meet the needs of children with disabilities and their families, including procedures to identify such children and plans to coordinate with programs providing services as described in Section 645A(b)(11) of the Head Start Act;
-Ensure parent involvement in policy and decision making;
-Provide comprehensive health and mental health services for children and pregnant women, including helping the family to identify and access a medical home to ensure ongoing care;
-Provide parent education that supports healthy parent and child relationships, including working with fathers;
-Ensure formal linkages with other agencies in the community providing services to pregnant women, infants, toddlers, and preschoolers;
-Support transition planning with families that ensures each pregnant woman and child experiences smooth transitions into Early Head Start, and from Early Head Start to Head Start or other preschool programs, and from Head Start to Kindergarten.
Head Start and Early Head Start are designed to increase the number of low-income children receiving high-quality, comprehensive early education services that help facilitate healthy development, including physical and social/emotional development, and prepare them for school success. To meet this goal, it is critical that funds awarded through this FOA do not supplant existing services. Thus, an entity receiving a Head Start and/or Early Head Start grant must: 1) expand the number of children it is serving relative to the number it would serve in the absence of the grant; and/or 2) improve the services provided to children it would serve in the absence of the grant (i.e., enhancing quality standards or extending the day). Because the cost of serving infants and toddlers is typically higher than the cost associated with serving preschool-aged children, increasing the relative number of Early Head Start slots may result in fewer overall children being served.
Head Start serves children when they are at least 3 years old by the date used to determine eligibility for public school in the community where the Head Start program is located. Early Head Start programs enroll pregnant women and infants and toddlers from birth to age 3. Families must either have incomes below the poverty line or be eligible for public assistance in order to be income eligible for Head Start or Early Head Start programs. In addition, homeless children and children in foster care are categorically eligible for services. Children are selected for enrollment based on age and income eligibility and relative level of need with regard to other criteria that are identified within each community (45 CFR § 1302.12).
Head Start regulations permit up to 10 percent of enrolled participants to be from families that do not meet these low-income criteria. A provision in the Head Start Act, as discussed in Section 645(a)(1)(B), which is applicable to both Head Start and Early Head Start, allows grantees that can ensure that all eligible children, including homeless children, are served, to enroll up to an additional 35 percent of its participants from families with incomes greater than or equal to 100 percent, but less than 130 percent, of the poverty line. It is not expected, however, given the relatively low Early Head Start participation rates, that the provisions of Section 645(a)(1)(B) regarding serving up to 35 percent of a program’s enrollment from families with incomes up to 130 percent of the poverty line would apply for this announcement.
Additionally, programs must ensure that at least 10 percent of the total number of children enrolled by the Head Start or Early Head Start agency and delegates are children with disabilities unless a waiver is granted.
Applicants may elect to propose program models that promote socioeconomic diversity within classrooms. Federal Head Start funds must be used to serve eligible children as described in this section. Additional children who are not income-eligible for Head Start or Early Head Start can be served so long as their participation is supported through other funding sources, including child care subsidies, public school pre-K allocations, parent-paid tuition, or other sources. Such program designs may be beneficial in promoting socioeconomic diversity within classrooms. All costs must be allocated to appropriate funding sources in compliance with federal requirements.
GrantWatch ID#: 147923
Expected Number of Awards: 3
-Award Ceiling: $7,641,447 Per Budget Period
-Award Floor: $500,000 Per Budget Period
The anticipated project start date is 12/02/2017.
The length of the project is 60 months with five12-month budget periods.
Before starting your grant application, please review the funding source's website listed below for updates/changes/addendums/conferences/LOIs.
Program Office Contact:
Administration for Children and Families
Office of Head Start
330 C Street, SW.
Washington, DC 20201
Office of Grants Management Contact:
Administration for Children and Families
1301 Young Street, 9th Floor
Dallas, TX 75202
USA: Louisiana: St. Landry Parish
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