Head Start

Head Start and Early Head Start are early childhood programs for pregnant women and eligible children from birth to age 5. Families are an important part of the program. Head Start and Early Head Start work with you to connect your family to early education, health and community services that support the learning and development of your child, and family well-being.

To find a Head Start or Early Head start program near you, please visit the Head Start Locator. You can also call 1-866-763-6481 (toll-free) to find a program near your area.

Contact the program to learn about Head Start or Early Head Start in your community. Your local program is ready to answer your questions about eligibility and help you through what is needed to apply.

Types of Programs

Early Head Start is for pregnant women and children birth to three years old. Some Early Head Start services are provided weekly by a home visitor that works with you in your home. There are programs that offer center-based Early Head Start in early learning centers or family child care homes. Contact your local program to find out what services are offered in your area. 

Head Start is for children ages three to five years and their families. Head Start home visiting or classrooms may be available in an early learning center, your local school or a family child care home. Head Start may be offered half-day (four hours) or full-day depending on the program in your community.


Eligibility for Head Start and Early Head Start programs recruit and enroll eligible pregnant women and children in your community. Your family may be eligible if you meet one or more of the criteria’s below:

  • Your income is equal to or below 100% of the federal poverty guideline.
  • Your family is eligible for public assistance, including TANF child-only payments.
  • Your family is experiencing homeless.
  • The child is in foster care.