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Heartland Head Start believes the family is the primary educator of the child and that efforts must be made to build a mutual partnership with families to achieve educational goals of the child within a natural environment reflecting diversity. The program will encompass developmentally appropriate activities in terms of age, culture, community needs, and interests of the children. Children learn through natural, creative, and realistic experiences using all senses and have unique learning styles and rates of development.



We assess children's prior knowledge and then track their progress in meeting the goals through ongoing assessment, observation, and recording of the child's development 3 to 4 times per school year. Parents and other adults in the child's life are encouraged to share with staff things they know about the child. No one knows the child better than his or her immediate family.



The Classroom Assessment Scoring System (CLASS) is an effective observational tool to assess classroom quality in the preschool classroom.



In Head Start, curriculum is implemented within the context of sound child development principles and what we know about how children develop and learn. One of our highest priorities is-and always has been- to improve the educational experience of every child in Head Start.

Transition Services


Smooth transitions from pre-kindergarten to kindergarten are a result of connections between schools and families, and between pre-kindergarten and kindergarten teachers and classrooms. Purposeful coordination between the pre-kindergarten and elementary settings can maintain and potentially maximize gains that children achieved in pre-kindergarten.

School Readiness


The Improving Head Start for School Readiness Act of 2007 makes it a top priority for programs to contribute to the school readiness of all of the children they serve. In very broad terms, the Office of Head Start’s definition of school readiness is that “children are ready for school, families are ready to support their children’s learning, and schools are ready for children.”

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