Head Start is a Federal program for preschool children from low-income families. In Wisconsin, non-profit organizations, schools, community action commissions or other local grantees operate the Head Start program. Children who attend Head Start participate in a variety of educational activities. They also receive free medical and dental care. They are served healthy meals and snacks. Their parents are partners in the program and have a wide array of social services available as needed. Most communities in Wisconsin are served, at least in part, by Head Start programs. Early Head Start is also available in several Wisconsin communities and serves children birth to age 3 and their families. Federal funds flow directly to state Head Start grantees.
The Wisconsin Head Start Association website can provide you with information about Head Start on the state and national levels; including contact information about specific Wisconsin Head Start programs.
The Wisconsin Head Start State Supplement was created by the legislature in 1989 and first funded in 1991. The Head Start State Supplement is administered through DPI. The program provides a Head Start experience to preschool children who would otherwise be on waiting lists to receive the federal Head Start program. The current state supplement provides $6,960,062 to 36 Head Start grantees. Approximately 1,219 children are serviced through the current state supplement.