Head Start agencies that provide services to children and families must meet the Head Start Program Performance Standards and the requirements set forth in the Head Start Act of 2007. The Office of Head Start (OHS) also offers direction through Program Instructions (PIs) and Information Memorandums (IMs). More guidance is available to grantees through their federal program specialist.
Head Start Act
The Improving Head Start for School Readiness Act of 2007 authorizes the Head Start program to promote the school readiness of low-income infants, toddlers, and preschoolers.
Head Start Program Performance Standards
HHS has made the first holistic revision and complete reorganization of the Performance Standards since they were originally published in 1975. Effective starting November 2016.
Information Memoranda (IMs)
IMs are targeted communication tools from OHS which provide policy information to Head Start and Early Head Start grantees and delegate agencies.
Program Instructions (PIs)
PIs address specific requirements that Head Start and Early Head Start grantees and delegate agencies must implement in their programs.
These regulations outline the uniform administrative requirements, cost principles, and audit requirements for federal awards.