Head Start and Early Head Start

Head Start and Early Head Start programs support the comprehensive development of children from birth to age 5. School readiness, health, nutrition and parent engagement services are delivered through grantee agencies and in partnership with child care providers, including many NAFCC members. Head Start serves about one million children across the country. 

News: There's a new funding opportunity for Early Head Start-Child Care Partnerships! 

In June 2016, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services announced the availability of funds - and the application - for Early Head Start-Child Care Partnerships, as well as a Funding Opportunity Announcement for Migrant and Seasonal Early Head Start Expansion and Early Head Start-Child Care Partnerships, and one for American Indian and Alaska Native Early Head Start Expansion and Early Head Start-Child Care Partnerships. Applications are due August 24, 2016. 

Family child care providers won’t be the grant applicants, but child care providers are the partners funded to provide early care opportunities for infants and toddlers in this initiative. Family child care, this is your time to shine! Here are some things you can do right now:  

  • NEW! Download the NAFCC “mini guide” on Early Head Start-Child Care Partnerships for tips and tools for easy action! 
  • Contact your local Head Start or Early Head Start program and find out if they plan to apply for these funds, and share ideas for partnering with family child care!
  • Contact your state or local family child care association or your state’s Head Start association to let them know you are interested.
  • Email policy@nafcc.org and we can try to help make connections and introductions.
  • Stay tuned to NAFCC for news you can use! 

New Standards Proposed for Head Start

In June 2015, the Administration for Children and Families (ACF) released a proposal 8 years in the making: revised regulations for the Head Start program.

Family child care is a valuable partner in the Head Start community. NAFCC and our partners carefully reviewed the proposal which has many big ideas and crucial details to consider. 

Read NAFCC's comments on the proposal

Read the press release from ACF on the proposal

Exciting Opportunity: Early Head Start-Child Care Partnerships

NAFCC members play a crucial role for infants and toddlers every day and Early Head Start-Child Care Partnerships are an exciting new opportunity.

In 2014, Congress approved a $500 million investment in Early Head Start-Child Care Partnerships for high-quality infant and toddler care. This work got underway in communities in 2015 and includes about 700 family child care providers to reach infants, toddlers and their families with crucial services. 

For FY2016, Congress approved an additional $135 million for Partnership and Expansion grants. This is another chance for the family child care community and the Head Start community to come together!  

NAFCC applauds this commitment to increasing investments in high-quality early learning experiences for infants, toddlers and their families, and the investment in family child care providers to carry out this work. 

Early Head Start-Child Care Partnerships brochure 

NAFCC fact sheet on Early Head Start-Child Care Partnerships updated June 2016

Success story - Connecticut

Success story - Virginia

Success story - California 

National Center on Early Head Start-Child Care Partnerships

Find the Early Head Start-Child Care Partnership Grantee near you!

Are you a family child care provider in an Early Head Start-Child Care Partnership? Please contact NAFCC via email: policy@nafcc.org

Professional Development: Early Educator Central

No matter what your infant-toddler career pathway is, you'll find resources to help build your competency and your impact. NAFCC is proud to partner to spread the word about Early Educator Central