How much does it cost for my child and family to enroll and participate in CVHS?
All services provided by CVHS are free. However, some services provided by collaborative partner childcare centers, such as wraparound full day childcare, do have a fee. These fees are not part of Head Start, and are paid to childcare centers for non-Head Start services. Families often receive Child Care Financial Assistance (also known as childcare subsidy) to help pay for these fees. Please click here for more information about this program available from VT Department for Children and Families.
There is no Head Start preschool classroom listed for my town. Are there Head Start programs available for my child and family?
Due to limited funding, CVHS does not have classrooms in every town within our service region.
Does my family have to reside in the town where the Head Start classroom is located in order for my child to be enrolled in that option?
While some preschool classrooms and child care centers provide priority for children of families who are residents of the town in which the classroom or center is located, there are some classrooms and centers which do not. Please click here for a list of sites and their requirements.
Does CVHS provide transportation?
Champlain Valley Head Start does not provide transportation. Some Head Start sites are located at schools, and some schools may make bus transportation available, though this service is unaffiliated with Head Start. Head Start staff are available to talk with families about transportation needs and will refer families to resources available in local communities, such as public transportation providers and information. In some limited instances, CVHS may be able to provide families with transportation assistance to assure that Head Start / Early Head Start children attend medical and dental appointments.
When should I submit an application for enrollment?
Anytime! CVHS has limited enrollment opportunities, and vacancies for the current school year are filled based on child and family need. If you are applying for enrollment for September, please note that all applications are held until the end of April. You will receive a letter confirming that we have received your application, but no enrollment decision will be made until the end of April. By the beginning of May, you will be notified of your child’s status in the program.
How does CVHS decide which children and families will be enrolled?
Enrollment determinations are based on child and family need. The two biggest factors are income eligibility and the age of the child. Other family needs are identified on the application and are used to help prioritize children and families for enrollment.
Do you have a waitlist?
Yes. CVHS maintains a site-specific waitlist throughout the year. Families may choose to have their child on the waitlist for more than one CVHS site/program. If we have a possible opening for your child, we will contact you.
Do you have openings during the school year?
Yes. CVHS frequently has openings that occur during the school year. The only way to ensure that your child is considered for an opening is to submit an application so that your child is on our waitlist.
My child will be three years old in November – can he/she enroll this year?
To enroll in a Head Start preschool program, a child must be at least three years old before the public school cut off date for kindergarten in the child’s community. For children served by CVHS, this means that the child must be three by September 1st. A child who turns three after the school cut off date may be considered for enrollment after he/she turns three at some of our sites, but priority is given to income eligible children who are three before the public school cut off date.
What is the home based program?
Children and families enrolled in the Head Start or Early Head Start Home Based program receive one, 90-minute home visit per week with a Home Visitor and take part in playgroup activities twice per month. The Early Head Start program runs year round, and the Head Start program runs September through May. Home visits provide individualized services in all Head Start areas: early education, health, family services and services to children with special needs. The home based program is focused on using the home as a learning environment to support optimal health and child development. For pregnant women, the home based program provides support to assure access to quality prenatal and postpartum care, and to support a healthy birth experience for mother, child and family.
My family receives 3SquaresVT (food stamps) and/or Dr. Dynasaur – is my child eligible for Head Start / Early Head Start?
3SquaresVT (food stamps) and Dr. Dynasaur are not automatic qualifiers for the Head Start / Early Head Start programs in Vermont. CVHS will need more information about your family and your income before determining if your child and family are eligible. Please click here for a detailed description of program eligibility.
I think that my family may be over the income requirements for your program – should I still apply?
Yes! In order to know for sure if your family is eligible, you should complete an application and submit the required income documentation. Even if you are determined to be over the income requirements, CVHS is able to enroll a limited number of over-income participants.