The Head Start Program
Exercise 1: Answer the questions below. The paper should use evidence from at least 2 credible sources, and should follow APA guidelines for in-text citations and source formatting. The paper should be between 3-5 pages, double-spaced.
One of the programs for children established during the Johnson Administration was Head Start, a preschool program for children aged four and five. Although Head Start, which serves low-income families, has continued to receive funding, there have never been enough slots available to meet the needs of all eligible children.
In 2013, for example, less than 50% of eligible low-income preschoolers were enrolled in Head Start. Though not all of those children would attend even if a slot was available, many families who want services are being turned away.
1 Why do you suppose that this is the case?
2 If Head Start is effective enough to receive continued funding, why wouldn’t we choose to fund it at levels that would guarantee a space to every eligible child?
Sample Answer Guide
The reason why less than 50% of eligible low-income preschoolers are enrolled in Head Start may be due to a combination of factors. One reason may be a lack of funding. Despite receiving continued funding, it may not be enough to meet the needs of all eligible children. Another reason may be a lack of awareness of the program among eligible families. Some families may not know that they are eligible for Head Start services or how to enroll in the program. Additionally, there may be a lack of available facilities or staff to accommodate all eligible children.
The reason why Head Start is not funded at levels that would guarantee a space to every eligible child may be due to the prioritization of other government initiatives and limited resources. It is possible that the government prioritizes other programs and initiatives over Head Start, which results in limited funding for the program. Additionally, it may be difficult to allocate resources in a way that would guarantee a space to every eligible child, as there are likely many competing demands for government funding.
Another factor that may contribute to the limited funding of Head Start is the political environment. The allocation of government funding is often influenced by political considerations, and some political leaders may choose to allocate funds to other initiatives that are seen as more politically favorable.
In conclusion, there may be a combination of factors that contribute to the limited enrollment in Head Start, including a lack of funding, a lack of awareness among eligible families, limited available facilities and staff, and political considerations. Despite the challenges, it is important to continue to support programs like Head Start, as they play a crucial role in providing early childhood education to low-income families and promoting equality in education.