TAYLOR COUNTY—It’s that time of year again to start to think about your child’s placement into Early Head Start and Head Start programs.
According to North Central West Virginia Community Action Association (NCWVCAA), the organization is now accepting applications for both of their programs.
NCWVCAA’s programs serve students in all of Taylor County Schools including Anna Jarvis, West Taylor and Flemington Elementary, but placement in the Early Head Start Program is done at their Lucretia and Webster sites.
Their Head Start program offers placement at the Lucretia and Webster locations, as well, but because they are grant funded, children and families with the highest needs will be selected for placement first.
Highest needs consist of income, special needs and certain family situations. And although placement is need-based, families with a child or children that fall into the age requirements are still encouraged to apply.
Additionally, children who turn three throughout the school year may also be enrolled upon their third birthday at the Lucretia and Webster locations, as space is available.
Head Start and Early Head Start are national programs that are funded both through the government and community sources.
According to NCWVCAA, 80 percent of the programs’ funding is contributed through the government, while the remained 20 percent is funded through community sources, helping to ensure that the needs, concerns, cultures and strengths of local communities are taken into consideration within the programs.
Head Start is geared at promoting school readiness, enhancing social and cognitive development and providing opportunities for children ages three to five years old to receive an education.
Families enrolled in NCWVCAA’s Head Start program, designed for children who have turned three years of age prior to June 30, has its own benefits.
The program also explores overall health, dental and mental health and starts educating young children on the importance of making sound nutritional choices. In addition, through Head Start, families have access to free childcare.
The Early Head Start program, which serves families of children from the prenatal stages to three years of age, affords participants with additional services including assistance with breastfeeding education, along with helping with medical, immunization and dental services.
The program helps ensure that infants and toddlers are moving in the right direction to achieve their developmental milestones, as well assisting with transition services for their next educational setting.
The program was started in response to the changing needs of families, as well as critical research showing that learning in the early years is beneficial to a child’s healthy growth and development.
Both programs aid families in setting goals and providing resources and referrals. They also provide both leadership and training opportunities for families who enroll.
Pre-applications may be completed online ncwvcaacorp.net/programs/head-start-early-head-start/. Once filled out and submitted, the pre-application will be emailed to a Family Services worker to review.
The worker will then contact candidates to complete the remainder of the application.
For additional information about either program, along with program transportation information for the 2021-2022 school year, or to complete a no contact application for any of the sites, please call the Taylor County Community Action Office at 304-265-3200.