Parental Engagement Program

Alta Head Start/Early Head Start’s Parental Engagement Program helps children progress better in school.

Who is eligible?

Children and pregnant mothers who are Mahoning County residents and meet federal eligibility requirements are eligible for Alta Head Start/Early Head Start. You will be asked to provide proof of birth, income, and residency.

Why is parental engagement important?

Research shows that if you’re involved in your children’s education, they will do better in school. If you become involved early, while your kids are in preschool, you’ll be better prepared to be active once your children enter elementary school, middle school, and high school. Also, schools need parent and family involvement to succeed just as much as your children do.

How does the parental engagement program work?

You will be visited in your home by an Alta Head Start staff member. He or she will get to know you and your children, and assess your family’s individual needs. You will be asked to form a Partnership with the staff member and to commit to become more involved in your children’s lives and improving your their opportunities for educational advancement. Together, you’ll set priorities and identify goals you want to achieve for your children.

What can the program do for me and my kids?

You and the Alta Head Start staff member will work toward creating a learning environment at home that will help support your children’s classroom learning. At the same time, you’ll get help to become a better role model for your children. Head Start can help you explore opportunities to expand your education, find or get a better job, and tap into support groups where parents and family members encourage each other.

How can i become involved outside of the home?

Some of the many additional ways you can support your children are:

  • attending Head Start /parent meetings
  • attending training to learn the rights and responsibilities concerning children’s education in school
  • getting involved in decisions about your children’s education by learning to communicate with teachers and other school staff
  • serving on a Head Start committee

How does the program help pregnant mothers?

A healthy pregnancy has a direct influence on the health and development of a newborn child. Early Head Start staff serves as advocates and liaisons between pregnant women and service providers through home visits. Goals of this program include:

  • healthy prenatal outcomes for pregnant women
  • building healthy family relationships
  • fully involving fathers in the lives of their newborn and very young children
  • physical, cognitive, language, and social and emotional development of infants and toddlers