Disability Services Coordinator Orientation Guide


Refer to Head Start Program Performance Standard Terms, 45 CFR §1305.2

Act – The Head Start Act, Sec. 635 et seq., Pub. L. 97-35, 95 Stat. 499-511 (codified as amended at 42 U.S.C. Section 9801, et seq.)

Dual language learner (DLL) – A child who is acquiring two or more languages at the same time, or a child who is learning a second language while continuing to develop their first language. The term "dual language learner" may encompass or overlap substantially with other terms frequently used, such as bilingual, English language learner (ELL), limited English proficient (LEP), English learner, and children who speak a language other than English (LOTE).

Parent – A Head Start child's mother or father, other family member who is a primary caregiver, foster parent or authorized caregiver, guardian or the person with whom the child has been placed for purposes of adoption pending a final adoption decree.

Research-based curriculum – A curriculum consistent with research about child development and learning; promotes teaching and learning activities that have been shown to have positive effects on children's progress and outcomes; and has descriptive research evaluation reflecting child progress but lacks evidence for a randomized control study.

Responsible HHS official – The official of the Department of Health and Human Services who has authority to make grants under the Act.

For additional terms, refer to the DEC Recommended Practices Glossary.


ACF – Administration for Children and Families

ADA – Americans with Disabilities Act

DEC – Division of Early Childhood for the Council of Exceptional Children

ECE – Early childhood education

ECTA – Early Childhood Technical Assistance Center

EHS – Early Head Start

ERSEA – Eligibility, Recruitment, Selection, Enrollment, and Attendance

ESEA – Elementary and Secondary Education Act

ESSA – Every Child Succeeds Act

FAPE – Free and public education

FERPA – The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974

HHS – U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

HIPAA – Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996

HSAC – Health Services Advisory Committee

HSPPS – Head Start Program Performance Standards

IDEA – Individuals with Disabilities Education Act

IEP – Individualized Education Program

IFSP – Individualized Family Service Plan

LEA – Local education agency

LRE – Least restrictive environment

MOU – Memorandum of understanding

MSHS – Migrant and Seasonal Head Start

NCECDTL – National Center on Early Childhood Development, Teaching, and Learning

NHSA – National Head Start Association

OHS – Office of Head Start

PBC – Practice-Based Coaching

SEA – State educational agency

T/TA – Training and technical assistance