Health and Wellness
Because children must be healthy and well nourished in order to learn, Head Start pays particular attention to health. Head Start ensures that all enrolled children have timely immunizations and screenings for cognitive development, basic health, mental health, speech and language, hearing, vision, nutrition, and dental health. Once screenings have been completed for each child, Head Start works with the family to ensure follow-up services are received for any identified needs.
Head Start builds collaborative relationships among children, families, staff, mental health professionals, and the community in order to enhance awareness and understanding of mental wellness and the contribution that mental health information and services can make to increase the resilient capacity of all children and families.
Nutritional heath enhances our ability to learn. For the young child, it means enriching their quality of life and enhancing their potential contributions to society. The ultimate goals of nutrition services is to achieve this though nutritional assessment and counseling, nutrition education to the entire family, provision of nutritious meals, empowering and educating parents so they can make healthy choices for themselves and their children.
During the Head Start and Early Head Start enrollment process, each family is given information about WIC program and assisted to apply if not already receiving WIC services. Additionally, under the guidance of a contracted registered dietitian, each enrolled child receives periodic nutritional assessments. Referrals for further counseling are made as needed. This includes children who require an therapeutic diet, or are underweight.