Washington, D.C. — Today, the Obama administration announced new regulations that address standards for high quality in Head Start. These regulations represent an important step forward to improve access to high-quality early learning opportunities for children starting from birth. The public has 60 days to comment on the proposed regulation before the administration begins further deliberations and issues a final regulation, which is expected next year. Katie Hamm, director of the Center for American Progress’ early childhood policy team, released the following statement:
Today, the Obama administration took an important step toward improving quality in Head Start and reducing administrative burdens on local programs. Importantly, the proposal would ensure that all Head Start programs operate for a full day for the academic year, a change that reflects research that shows children—especially those from low-income households—benefit the most when they have access to full-day early learning programs. Working families that need longer hours to support employment would also benefit. The administration has also proposed reducing the burden on local programs by eliminating more than one-third of unnecessary standards and aligning several Head Start quality assurances with the Child Care and Development Block Grant, or CCDBG.
It is encouraging to see the administration move forward with these important improvements, and it should finalize them swiftly to ensure that children and families have access to the best-quality early learning programs.
For more information or to speak with an expert, contact Allison Preiss at firstname.lastname@example.org or 202.478.6331.