For more than 50 years, Head Start has been a leader in preparing healthy children ready to learn. This tradition continues through the Lower Columbia College Head Start, Early Head Start, and ECEAP programs. Head Start is available to pregnant women and children from birth through age four. The college has announced that enrollment for fall classes is open. All Head Start services are free.
To start the enrollment process, parents are encouraged to call the college at 360-442-2800. The program strives to serve the children with the greatest need. The general criteria for eligibility are children with family income below the federal poverty line; children whose families receive TANF or SSI; children in foster care, regardless of family income; children who are homeless; and children who have disabilities and are eligible for special education and related services,
Head Start Director Sue Boursaw points out, “Our mission is to serve children with the greatest needs. Children who are homeless, in foster care, or who receive TANF are eligible for our programs regardless of family income.” Head Start works closely with local agencies and school districts to offer a continuum of services to the child and family.
Early Head Start serves pregnant women and infants and toddlers up to age three in a home base model with the teacher meeting with the parent and child in the home once a week. EHS also serves teen parents in Longview with a M-F school day center based program.
Three and four-year-old children are enrolled in the preschool program that meet part days in 3 ½ hour classes, 3-4 days a week or a new full day model with the children in class for six hours, five days a week. Full-day classrooms are available in Castle Rock, Kelso, West Longview, and on the LCC campus.
Classrooms are located in Longview, Kelso, and Castle Rock. The program also serves children from Kalama and Toutle as well. Children in the programs benefit from a quality early childhood education program, family home visits, social services, medical and dental screening, nutrition, and mental health services. The programs use a family development approach with an emphasis on the parent being the primary educator of the child.
Classes begin September 5 and parents are encouraged to apply now before classes are filled. Information is available by visiting the Head Start office on the Lower Columbia College campus or by calling their ofices at 360-442-2800