Our Service


Head Start is an early childhood education and development program that fosters healthy development for eligible children and families.

Head Start and Early Head Start provide early childhood and family development services for:

  • Children from birth to age 5
  • Pregnant women
  • Families

Head Start services cover a range of areas:

  • Education and early childhood development
  • Medical, dental, and mental health
  • Nutrition
  • Parental involvement and family support

How Can Head Start Help Your Child?

Every morning and afternoon, up to 20 children between the ages of 3 and 5 benefit from the stimulating, encouraging environment that Head Start provides. Activities include a daily meal, group learning time, science experiments, and of course, fun on the playground! At Head Start, we focus on the whole child, preparing them for success in kindergarten and beyond!


A child’s early years are very important to their learning and development, and kids learn best when they are active.

Head Start prepares children for success in school and in life by teaching them how to learn, not just in preschool, but throughout their lives.

OACAC Head Start is proud to receive funding from Abilities First to support full participation and inclusion of young children with special needs.

Four areas of development:

  • Social and emotional development
  • Physical development
  • Intellectual development
  • Language development

Curriculum approach:

  • Support active learning
  • Encourage exploration through play
  • Promote development of the whole child

Curriculum Goals:

  • For children to become enthusiastic learners
  • For children to get along with each other

Our Service


Early Head Start provides continuous, intensive child development and family support on a year-round basis for low-income pregnant women and families with infants and toddlers ages birth to 3 years.

The purpose of Early Head Start is to:

  • Enhance children’s physical, social, emotional, and intellectual development
  • Support parents’ efforts to fulfill their parental roles
  • Help parents move toward self-sufficiency

OACAC respects the parents’ role as their child’s first and most influential teacher:

  • We work with parents to set developmentally appropriate goals for their children
  • We host family nights for participating families
  • Clients receive regular home visits

EHS cares for each child as an individual:

  • We require weekly observations of each child’s development
  • We compile quarterly developmental assessment reports
  • Information is used to plan for each child’s learning and care individually

OACAC ensures that all EHS teachers are qualified to provide excellent care by requiring that all teachers have, at minimum, and Infant/Toddler CDA or its equivalent at the time of hire or within one year.


Who Is Eligible for Head Start? 

Head Start serves (1) Families with incomes below designated poverty guidelines; (2) Children from homeless families; (3) Children in Foster Care; (4) Families receiving public assistance such as SNAP or TANF.

Head Start Income Guidelines 2022-2023


Head Start Age Requirements 2022-2023

Children are eligible for Head Start once they turn three years old. Four year old children still have priority.

Date Range Age
8/1/2017 - 7/31/2018
4 year-olds
8/1/2018 - 7/31/2019
3 year-olds

Early Head Start Age Requirements 2022-2023

Children who are birth to three years-old and pregnant women.

Date RangeAge
8/1/2019 - 7/31/2020
2 year-olds
8/1/2020 - 7/31/2021
1 year-olds
8/1/2021 - 7/31/2022


How Can You Sign Up for Head Start?

For information about enrolling your child in Head Start, call 417-864-3430 or toll free at 1-866-282-3430 or to enroll by email click here. You can also fill out our Parent Information Request form and turn it in at one of our offices.

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You can support early childhood development by volunteering at your local Head Start!


Your support gives kids a healthy start and prepares them for a lifetime of learning success!