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Enrollment requirements for Early Head Start and Head Start services are based on: 

  • The child’s age.
  • Family income in the last 12 months or preceding calendar year.
  • Whether the family or child qualifies as homeless.
  • Whether the child is currently in foster or kinship care.
  • The family’s use of TANF or SSI.


Enrollment factors may also include:

  • Parental status: Whether the child lives with a single parent, pregnant mother, teen parent or non-biological custodian.
  • Disability status: Whether the child has an IEP/IFSP, including whether the child has a disability, is suspected of having a disability or is referred by a qualified mental health professional.
  • Other possibly related circumstances:
    • Terminal illness or death in the family.
    • History of domestic violence.
    • History of substance abuse.
    • Referrals from social service agencies.
    • The mental health of the parent(s).
    • Non-English-speaking family.
    • Recent immigrant or refugee family.
    • Incarcerated parent.
    • Parent(s) current active duty service in the military.