Head Start Eligibility & How to Apply

Head Start Logo

What is Head Start?

Head Start programs support children's growth from birth to age five through services that support early learning and development, health, and family well-being. Head Start staff actively engage parents, recognizing family participation throughout the program as key to strong child outcomes.

Head Start services are available at no cost to children ages birth to age five in eligible families. Head Start preschool services work with families with children ages 3 to 5. Early Head Start services work with families with children ages birth to age three, and many also serve expectant families. Many programs operate both Head Start preschool and Early Head Start services. Programs deliver child development services in center-based, home-based, or family child care settings. All Head Start programs continually work toward our mission for eligible children and families to receive high-quality services in safe and healthy settings that prepare children for school and life.

More information about Head Start can be found here: https://www.acf.hhs.gov/ohs/about/head-start

woman caring for toddlers

Does my family qualify for the Head Start program?

Families with children from birth through age five who meet one or more of the following criteria are considered categorically eligible for Head Start and Early Head Start services:

Families who do not meet the categorical eligibility requirements are still encouraged to apply.

How to Apply

Information about Rhode Island Head Start Agencies and how to apply can be located on the Rhode Island Head Start Association Website. For more information, call the program serving your community today.