Programs: Head Start

Families with children enrolled have met the eligibility requirements, and required documentation is complete.  A file must be established for each family, including a completed application and supporting documentation. At least 10% of the total enrollment opportunities must be made available for children with disabilities.




Interpreting regulations & putting them into practice can be challenging. Below are strategies to ensure this component is met:



An eligible child participating in a program remains eligible through the end of the succeeding program year. If a child moves from EHS to HS, eligibility must be verified again.

HS eligible means a child or pregnant woman who meets the requirements for age & one of the following criteria's:

  • Homeless

  • Foster Care

  • Public Assistance

  • Income


Age Eligibility & Income Guidelines Reference Sheet 2019-2020

Program Age Eligibility Snapshot

Application Requirements Checklist: Head Start

HHS Poverty Guidelines

Self-Certification of Income

Self-Identification of Homelessness


Programs are required to develop & implement a recruitment process that is designed to actively inform all families with eligible children within the recruitment area of the availability of services. 


Recruitment & Marketing Plan Work Group Slides
Recruitment & Marketing Plan Work Group Facilitator Notes
Recruitment Plan Template



Each program contractor annually establishes selection criteria that weigh the prioritization of selection of participants, based on community needs identified in the community needs assessment.

When an opening becomes available, children are prioritized based on a point value system. The following is considered when developing the selection criteria:

  • Income of eligible families

  • Age of the child

  • Homeless

  • Foster care

  • Special education or early intervention services

  • Family or child risk factors


No more than 30 calendar days may lapse before a vacancy is filled.

Applications are completed with the parent/guardian through an interview process. 

Once the child is selected for enrollment an orientation is held that includes a tour of the facility, completelicensing paperwork & review the program guidelines.


The Enrollment Process

Eligibility Record

Must maintain an eligibility determination record for each participant.

May keep records electronically or in locked cabinet.  

Checklists assist staff in ensuring the eligibility record is consistently organized & serves as a check n' balance system for required documentation.


Eligibility Determination Record Checklist

Data File.jpg

Multilingual Communication

We developed a template through Google Sheets, which incorporates Google Translate to have a real time conversation with someone who speaks a different language. It may not be a 100% perfect translation, but it's a great way to communicate quickly with someone in another language.

  1. Login to your Google Account

  2. Return to this page

  3. Open the Let's Chat Template

  4. Select File & Make a Copy to your drive

  5. Use the tool to communicate with parents that speak a different language


Let's Chat: Making Connections Across Language Barriers


HS Performance Standards: 1302.12, 1302.13 1302.14, 1302.15 

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