Program Planning

At-a-Glance Comparison: Tribal Child Care and Development Fund and American Indian and Alaska Native Head Start

Tribes have requirements in their two-year Child Care and Development Fund (CCDF) plans to coordinate the delivery of services with other tribal, federal, state, and local early childhood development programs, such as Head Start. This chart provides a quick glance that compares tribal child care with Head Start programs, and can be used by American Indian and Alaska Head Start programs to further their collaboration efforts.

  Child Care* Head Start**
Purpose/Mission Increase availability, affordability, and quality of care; support parents in economic independence; support TANF work provisions; tribal flexibility; parental choice/consumer education Promote school-readiness by enhancing the social and cognitive development of low-income children through the provision, to low-income children and their families, of educational, health, nutritional, social and other services
Funding Mechanism Federal block grant to tribe Federal grant to tribe
Revenues to Tribe May change every fiscal year based on base amount and tribal child count Predictable/known-indicated in grant award
Non-Federal Share Requirements 100 percent federal; no non-federal match required Requires 20 percent non-federal tribal match (cash or in-kind)
Parent Fees Fee scale/requires parent fees (co-pay); tribe can waive fees for families at/below poverty and for children in protective service None
Child Enrollment Levels Tribe submits self-certified child count annually; levels vary from year to year; child count does not reflect the number of children who actually receive services Specified in grant award
Child/Family Eligibility Criteria Low-income families who work or attend training/education with children under age 13; Income must not exceed 85 percent of State Median Income or Tribal Median Income Preschool children and their families below the poverty level; 49 percent of enrolled children may be over-income
Child/Family Eligibility Periods Child must meet federally recognized tribe's definition of "Indian child"; tribe sets eligibility determination process/period/income eligibility levels EHS/Birth to 3 once determined income-eligible; eligible until 3 years old; 3–5 years—once determined income-eligible can remain enrolled until kindergarten
Standards/Regulations Set by each tribe; may establish tribal health and safety standards or adopt CCDF Minimum Standards for Tribes or state licensing standards Federal Head Start Program Performance Standards and other applicable federal regulations
Group Size-Child/Teacher Ratio Specified by tribe Specified by federal standards
Staff Qualifications Tribe sets provider qualifications 50 percent of teaching staff are required to obtain an AA, BA (in ECE) by 2003–remaining staff must obtain CDA
Comprehensive Services Not required by federal regulations Required by federal standards (e.g., health, nutrition, social, educational)
Parent Involvement & Decision-Making Parents given ultimate decision regarding care for their children; public hearing required every two years Required by federal standards (e.g., Policy Council, parent education)
Quality Assurance Tribally determined tribes receiving more than $500,000 must expend a minimum of four percent of annual funds on quality initiatives Federal review of programs every three years; program self-assessment required annually