So, what’s new with Head Start?
1: Extended day
CCRC is offering extended hours to 522 of the 1,130 preschoolers CCRC directly serves in the San Fernando Valley. So, nearly half of the children CCRC serves are now receiving more hours of preschool.
|Part day||Extended day|
3 ½ hours a day
130 days a year
9 ½ months
5 ½ hours a day
170 days a year
10 ½ months
There are plans to extend hours even more in a few months.
Here’s why CCRC’s offering an extended day: Research has shown that children who get more preschool hours are more prepared for school. Extended hours also give parents the opportunity to go to school or work during the day.
Head Start is committed to supporting families to help get them out of poverty.
2: New infant and toddler centers
This is the first time CCRC is opening infant and toddler centers for children 18 to 36 months. There’s an infant and toddler center for 16 kids in Reseda and another for 16 kids in Canoga Park, with plans to grow and add more centers.
This classroom setting provides a place where children are allowed to explore their own movements and culture by being active participants in activities that are connected to their world. Everything in the environment is designed to meet the specific needs of very young children in terms of the development of receptive and expressive language and communication skills, gross and fine motor skills, toileting and independence.
Our toddler program is guided by a developmental philosophy; based on the understanding that children construct their knowledge of the world through hands-on, integrated, and active child-centered learning experiences. These learning experiences can take on many shapes: manipulating play dough, pretend play, climbing, crawling, and utilizing their senses to name a few.
3: New Head Start program performance standards
The goal of revised regulations is to streamline and reduce redundancies. A strong focus on program flexibility allows CCRC to design programs that specifically meet the needs of our community.
Two new Head Start standards:
- Requirement to provide a longer day for preschoolers
- By 2021, all Head Start locations must offer 1,020 hours of service annually
- CCRC is well on its way to meeting this new requirement
- Adjusted requirement for center-based infant toddler centers
- By 2018, any infant or toddler in one of these programs must receive 1,380 hours of service annually
- CCRC is meeting this requirement now, as its toddler-based centers offer 1,380 hours at a minimum
4: New cohort training
CCRC has a new way of rolling out provider training in continuing efforts to offer quality services to families. Cohort training, or small learning community training, is more specialized for staff needs. It meets staff needs to continue their development on a specific issue — and allows for support from their peers who are also going through the cohort.
For example, the new Infant and Toddler Cohort allows this group to get more in-depth information that is specific to caring for infants and toddlers.
For more information about Head Start programs and services, please call 818-717-4515 to speak with a Head Start representative. For Palmdale School District’s Head Start program, please call 661-273-4710.