The Office of Head Start (OHS) has made some changes to the Head Start Program Performance Standards (HSPPS) since they were published in 2016. Explore the updates to the standards, as well as any related requests for comment or notices of proposed rule-making. The HSPPS posted on the Early Childhood Learning and Knowledge Center (ECLKC) are up-to-date, accounting for any changes that have been finalized.
This final rule removes the vaccine and testing requirements included in the November 2021 Interim Final Rule with Comment Period (IFC), Vaccine and Mask Requirements to Mitigate the Spread of COVID–19 in Head Start Programs. Specifically, this rescission removes the requirement from the HSPPS that all Head Start staff, contractors whose activities involve contact with or providing direct services to children and families, and volunteers working in classrooms or directly with children are fully vaccinated for COVID–19. The associated HSPPS requirement that staff who are exempt from the vaccination requirement have “at least weekly” COVID–19 testing is also removed.
Check out these resources to learn more about the requirement that Head Start programs have an evidence-based COVID-19 mitigation policy.
This interim final rule adds a new provision to the HSPPS to establish parameters by which the Administration for Children and Families may make designation renewal determinations during a federally declared major disaster, emergency, or public health emergency and in the absence of all normally required data. OHS solicits comments from the Head Start community about the addition of the new standard at 45 CFR §1304.17 until February 5, 2021.
These DRS revisions ensure the conditions for competitive designation target grantees with lower performance or systemic problems. They also support continuous quality improvement of teacher-child interactions.
The Secretary exercised the authority granted in the HSPPS to lower the Head Start center-based service duration requirement from 100% to 45% (45 CFR §1302.21(c)(3)(ii) and (c)(2(iii)).
Programs have until Sept. 30, 2021 to comply with the comprehensive background check procedures and state or local quality rating and improvement systems (QRIS) in HSPPS 45 CFR §§1302.90(b) and 1302.53(b)(2). OHS also requests comments on the issues set out in this final rule.
Review a Notice of Proposed Rule Making (NPRM) proposing changes to the Head Start Designation Renewal System (DRS), published in the Federal Register on Aug. 13, 2019. It addresses the Classroom Assessment Scoring System: Pre-K (CLASS®) condition and the fiscal condition related to audit findings.
Review this NPRM, published in the Federal Register on March 26, 2019, about Head Start service duration. It removes the requirement for all Head Start programs to serve 100 percent of their preschool center-based children for a full-school day and full school year (1,020 annual hours) by Aug. 1, 2021. Learn how to give your feedback and help the Office of Head Start make decisions for a final rule.
OHS invited public comment on specific changes being considered for the Classroom Assessment Scoring System (CLASS®) with a goal of improving implementation and transparency of the Designation Renewal System (DRS).
Programs have until Sept. 30, 2019 to comply with the comprehensive background check procedures and state or local quality rating and improvement systems (QRIS) in HSPPS 45 CFR §§1302.90(b) and 1302.53(b)(2).
Review the Federal Register about the 2017 delay of the compliance dates for background check procedures and for programs to participate in their state or local QRIS.
The Secretary exercised the authority granted in the HSPPS to lower the Head Start center-based service duration requirement from 50 percent to 0 percent (45 CFR §1302.21(c)(3)(i) and (c)(2(iii)).
Review the Final Rule around the HSPPS. Find key changes, effective dates, implementation support, and next steps.
Explore these questions and answers surrounding the release of the HSPPS.
Last Updated: August 10, 2023