Head Start & OPK
What is Head Start & Oregon Pre-Kindergarten?
Head Start is a federal program that promotes school readiness of young children from low-income families by enhancing their cognitive, social and emotional development. Oregon modeled Oregon Pre-kindergarten (OPK) after Head Start to expand high-quality early learning opportunities for the lowest income and highest need preschool children.
OPK is free to families from the period of prenatal to five years old and not yet eligible for kindergarten, and who meet income or other eligibility qualifications. Program services include:
Preschool education and early childhood development
Child health/mental health and nutrition
Parent education and family support
In the classroom, the program provides a learning environment that supports children’s growth and development, which includes:
Language and literacy
Cognition and general knowledge
Physical development and health
Social and emotional development
Approaches to learning
OPK emphasizes the role of parents as their child’s first and most important teacher and builds relationships with families to support:
Family well-being and positive parent-child relationships
Families as learners and lifelong educators
Family engagement in transitions
Family connections to peers and community
Families as advocates and leaders
All services are designed to be responsive to each child and family’s ethnic, cultural, and linguistic heritage. NCESD is proud to partner with Head Start to have these serviced available in Sherman and Wheeler Counties.
For Head Start services in Gilliam County, please contact Umatilla Morrow Head Start.
North Central ESD Early Education Policy Council is here to assist and support local community preschools in serving the families in their community to meet or exceed Head Start Performance Standards.
Head Start programs promote the school readiness of children ages birth to 5 from low-income families by supporting their development in core areas of early learning, health, and family well-being while engaging parents as partners every step of the way.
Complete this application to begin the enrollment process.
4RELH works across the five sectors of early learning, health, human services, K-12 education, and private sector partners to ensure positive family outcomes.
Working Together To Give All Children An Equitable Start
Across Gilliam, Hood River, Sherman, Wasco and Wheeler Counties, where children thrive in stable and attached families, enter kindergarten ready to engage in meaningful learning and live in communities where people work together with intention and purpose.
Office of Head Start (OHS) provides grant funding and oversight to the programs that provide Head Start services in communities across the country. This site contains resources for Parents, Providers and Educators, and Administration.
The National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) is a professional membership organization that works to promote high-quality early learning for all young children, birth through age 8, by connecting early childhood practice, policy, and research.
Information from the Oregon Department of Education for Parents, Providers and Educators, and Administraion including:
Early Learning Council
Early Head Start
Head Start & Oregon Pre-K
Healthy Families Oregon
North Central Public Health District is the only three-county local health department in Oregon serving Wasco, Sherman, & Gilliam Counties, all located in the Columbia Gorge region.