ACF-PI-HS-20-02 FY 2020 Head Start Funding Increase
Explore the allowable uses of quality improvement funds for Head Start and Early Head Start programs based on Sec. 640(a)(5) of the Head Start Act.
The language in this document comes directly from Sec. 640(a)(5) of the Head Start Act, except that language has been removed from No. 1 specifying that at least 50% of the funds must be used for staff compensation and language has been removed from No. 8 specifying that no more than 10% of the funds can be used on transportation to align with the FY 2020 enacted appropriation language.
- To improve the compensation (including benefits) of educational personnel, family service workers, and child counselors, as described in Sections 644(a) and 653 of the Head Start Act, in the manner determined by the Head Start agencies (including Early Head Start agencies) involved, to—
- ensure that compensation is adequate to attract and retain qualified staff for the programs involved in order to enhance program quality;
- improve staff qualifications and assist with the implementation of career development programs for staff that support ongoing improvement of their skills and expertise; and
- provide education and professional development to enable teachers to be fully competent to meet the professional standards established under Sec. 648A(a)(1) of the Act, including—
- providing assistance to complete postsecondary course work;
- improving the qualifications and skills of educational personnel to become certified and licensed as bilingual education teachers, or as teachers of English as a second language; and
- improving the qualifications and skills of educational personnel to teach and provide services to children with disabilities
- To support staff training, child counseling, and other services necessary to address the challenges of children from immigrant, refugee, and asylee families; homeless children; children in foster care; limited English proficient children; children of migrant or seasonal farmworker families; children from families in crisis; children referred to Head Start programs (including Early Head Start programs) by child welfare agencies; and children who are exposed to chronic violence or substance abuse.
- To ensure that the physical environments of Head Start programs are conducive to providing effective program services to children and families, and are accessible to children with disabilities and other individuals with disabilities.
- To employ additional qualified classroom staff to reduce the child-to-teacher ratio in the classroom and additional qualified family service workers to reduce the family-to-staff ratio for those workers.
- To ensure that Head Start programs have qualified staff that promote the language skills and literacy growth of children and that provide children with a variety of skills that have been identified, through scientifically based reading research, as predictive of later reading achievement.
- To increase hours of program operation, including—
- conversion of part-day programs to full-working day programs; and
- increasing the number of weeks of operation in a calendar year.
- To improve communitywide strategic planning and needs assessments for Head Start programs and collaboration efforts for such programs, including outreach to children described in No. 2 above.
- To transport children in Head Start programs safely.
- To improve the compensation and benefits of staff of Head Start agencies, in order to improve the quality of Head Start programs.
Last Updated: March 27, 2020