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FAQs

What is Head Start?

Head Start is a program of the United States Department of Health and Human Services. Through Head Start grand funding, schools and early childhood education centers are able to provide comprehensive education, nutrition, health, and parental engagement services to low- income children and families. Head Start early education programs support children from birth to age 5. Many Head Start programs help families access social and crisis supports, including housing assistance, parenting education, English as a second language, job training, mental health services and substance abuse prevention.

What is the History of Head Start?

In 1964, President Lyndon B. Johnson declared a “War on Poverty.” As part of this effort, he appointed Robert Sargent Shriver Jr. to serve as the director of the Office of Economic Opportunity. Shriver worked with experts in the field of childhood developing, including doctors and pediatricians, to develop a program that would provide preschool children and their families with a comprehensive program to meet social, emotional, health, nutritional and psychological needs.

The first Head Start program started in 1965. Since its inception, Head Start has provided comprehensive childhood development services to more than 36 million children. In 1975, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services published the Head Start Performance Standards. The federal government reauthorized the Head Start program and expanded it to a full-day and full-year program. In 2007, the federal government reauthorized the Head Start program with bipartisan support.

What is MARC’s role with Head Start?

The Mid-America Regional Council (MARC) has been awarded the Head Start and Early Head Start grants for Clay, Platte and Jackson counties. We receive grant funding from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. MARC Head Start contracts with 17 community- based centers and school district programs to provide direct services, forming a network for improving the well-being of 2400 young children and their families. MARC is one of many Head Start providers across the United States.

How many slots are available?

We have approximately 2,400 slots available to serve children from birth through age 5.

Where are you located?

Our administrative offices are located at 600 Broadway Blvd Suite 200, Kansas City, Missouri 64105. Direct service provider locations are available online.

What are the benefits of Head Start?

Nearly 90 percent of a child’s brain develops by age 5. These are critical years to build social, emotional, cognitive, special and language skills. When children are able to participate in a high-quality early childhood education program, the benefits exceed beyond childhood. Children who attend Head Start are more likely to graduate from high school.

Head Start provides comprehensive, high-quality early education services that facilitate healthy development including physical and social/emotional development and prepare children for school success.

Do you serve children with disabilities or developmental delays?

Yes. We strive to serve all children who are eligible. MARC Head Start also works to fill at least 10 percent of our early education slots with children who have a disability or developmental delay.

Who do I contact to get my child enrolled in Head Start or Early Head Start?

Call the Head Start Central Line: 816-841-3382
Email at: marcheadstart@marc.org

What documents do I need to bring when I apply for Head Start or Early Head Start?
  • Proof of birth or proof of pregnancy for each child.
  • Proof of income (e.g., most current tax return, W-2 and/or paystubs)
    • Proof of 12 months of income.
    • Proof of child support received for 12 months.
    • Proof of SSI or TANF if you are currently receiving either.
    • Pell Grants or scholarship information
    • Proof of residency for Jackson, Clay or Platte counties. Proof of residency can include a utility bill, rental contact or Missouri state property tax receipt with your current address.
What health information is needed to enroll my child?
  • Insurance or Medicaid card for your child.
  • Child’s current shot/vaccination record.
  • Other items needed:
    • Physical exam—Within the first 90 days of enrollment
    • Dental exam—Within the first 90 days of enrollment.
    • Lead and hemoglobin tests.
    • Individualized Care Plan (ICP) for children based on medical needs (e.g., asthma action plan), if applicable.
    • Individualized Family Service Plan (IFSP) or Individualized Education Plan (IEP), if applicable.

Your Support Team
at MARC

Education coordinator/coaches offer support and oversight for Education Services. They coach teachers and home visitors to provide engaging learning environments, play-based experiences, and effective interactions with young children. They also coordinate developmental screenings, observation-based assessment, analysis of child outcomes data, family style dining, continuity of care for infants and toddlers, and parents.

Carol Bolz

Carol Bolz

Education Manager

Lacy Butler

Lacy Butler

Education Coordinator/Coach

 
Michelle Draper

Michelle Draper

Education Coordinator/Coach

 
Jami Jordan

Jami Jordan

Education Coordinator/Coach

 

Our enrollment team is committed to serving children and families most in need and building relationships with partnering agencies.

Kasey Lawson

Kasey Lawson

Betty Choi

Betty Choi

ERSEA Coordinator

Liz Folk

Liz Folk

Eligibility Specialist

Tori Humes

Tori Humes

Eligibility Specialist

Terrion Jones

Terrion Jones

Eligibility Specialist

 
Kate Jacquin

Kate Jacquin

Lead Eligibility Specialist

Daniela Rivera

Daniela Rivera

ERSEA/Data Administrative Assistant

Gabrielle Bridgeman

Gabrielle Bridgeman

Eligibility Specialist

Our health services staff collaborate with the health care community to provide a coordinated approach to health care access and services.

Sandra Reece

Sandra Reece

Health and Nutrition Manager

Kathy Waage

Alma Rivera

Head Start Specialist

Brandy Holderby

Brandy Holderby

Health and Nutrition Coordinator

Kathy Waage

Bridgette Smith

Head Start Specialist

Kathy Waage

Kathy Waage

Health and Nutrition Coordinator

MARC Head Start works with school districts and community agencies to support children and families who need assistance with mental health or early intervention services.

Tamara Graves

Tamara Graves

Mental Health and Disability Manager

We engage families in partnerships that support the health growth and development of children, parents and the community. This begins with developing relationships and focusing on goals families create with program staff and engaged community partners.

Lynette Fowler

Lynette Fowler

Family and Community Engagement Manager

Millie Robinson

Millie Robinson

Family Engagement/ERSEA Coordinator

Our fiscal team ensures that federal and state funds are spent wisely. The team supports contract execution, accounts receivable and accounts payable.

Joy Edwards

Joy Edwards

Katelyn Click

Ginny Williams

Joy Edwards

Brad Gaeddert

Grants Accountant III

Lupe Valdovino

Lupe Valdovino

The Organizational Development team collaborates the provider network in a coordinated effort to mitigate risks, coordinate strategic planning and develop innovative practices.

Katelyn Click

Pam Kabrick

Organizational Development Manager

Joy Edwards

Anneasyka Roston

Lupe Valdovino

Molly Chavez

Data and Evaluation Coordinator

MARC Head Start

Jennifer Leighton-Floyd

 

Quality Assurance Coordinator