Embracing Health and Wellness Series

In the Embracing Health and Wellness series, learn about current research topics.  Explore best practices and safety tips for Head Start and child care programs.

Virtual Early Education Center (VEEC)

The Virtual Early Education Center (VEEC) is an online tool for early care and education (ECE) programs, including Head Start, Early Head Start, and child care. It is designed to have the look and feel of an actual ECE center. Visitors can move from room to room within the VEEC to find information on health and safety practices and useful resources. Use it to explore resources and information regarding Head Start Program Performance Standards and Caring for Our Children (CFOC). Learn more about health-focused ECE and best practices.

Authorized Persons to Pick Up Child

Children may only be released to adults authorized by parents or legal guardians whose identity has been verified by photo identification. Names, addresses, and telephone numbers of persons authorized to pick up child should be obtained during the enrollment process and regularly reviewed, along with clarification/documentation of any custody issues/court orders. The legal guardian(s) of the child should be established and documented at this time.

Strangulation Hazards

Strings and cords long enough to encircle a child's neck, such as those on toys and window coverings, should not be accessible to children in early care and education programs.

Use and Storage of Toxic Substances

All toxic substances should be inaccessible to children and should not be used when children are present. Toxic substances should be used as recommended by the manufacturer and stored in the original labeled containers. The telephone number for the poison control center should be posted and readily accessible in emergency situations.

Sun Safety Including Sunscreen

Caregivers/teachers should ensure sun safety for themselves and children under their supervision by keeping infants younger than six months out of direct sunlight, limiting sun exposure when ultraviolet rays are strongest and applying sunscreen with written permission of parents/guardians. Manufacturer instructions should be followed.

Digging Deeper into Safety and Injury Prevention Data

Head Start managers organize a large amount of data about safety and injury prevention in their programs. Learning what the data means and how to use it to plan can be challenging. This health chat helps managers aggregate and analyze their program data to plan more effective safety and injury prevention strategies.