Implementing Early Head Start Home-Based Option Meets HHS Criteria

Model implementation summary last updated: 2020

The information in this implementation report reflects feedback, if provided, from this model’s developer as of the above date. The description of the implementation of the model(s) here may differ from how the model(s) was implemented in the manuscripts reviewed to determine this model’s evidence of effectiveness. Inclusion in the implementation report does not mean the practices described meet the HHS criteria for evidence of effectiveness. Please see the Effectiveness button on the left for more information about any research on the effectiveness of the model, including any version(s) of the model with effectiveness research. Versions of the model that are described in the Adaptations and enhancements section of this implementation report may include: (1) versions that were identified by the model’s developer and that also have manuscripts that HomVEE rated high or moderate, (2) versions identified by the model’s developer for which HomVEE has not reviewed effectiveness research, and (3) versions that have been implemented by researchers and have manuscripts that HomVEE rated high or moderate, but that are not supported by the model’s developer.

Training to support implementation

Requirements for program certification

To receive funding, organizations interested in implementing the Early Head Start Home-Based Option must apply to ACF and provide a detailed plan for model implementation and adherence to the applicable performance standards. The criteria for selection of applicants include the following:

  • The cost-effectiveness of the proposed program;
  • The qualifications and experience of the applicant and the applicant’s staff in planning, organizing, and providing comprehensive child development services at the community level;
  • The quality of the proposed program as indicated by adherence to, or evidence of the intent and capability to adhere to, the Head Start Program Performance Standards;
  • The proposed program design and options, including the suitability of facilities and equipment proposed for use in carrying out the program; and
  • The need for Head Start services in the community served by the applicant.
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Pre-service staff training

At a minimum, the Head Start Program Performance Standards require that Early Head Start programs provide an orientation to all new staff that includes the goals and philosophy of the Early Head Start program and how they are implemented in the individual program. In addition, all staff must be trained on how to implement the curriculum.

The Office of Head Start does not require programs to provide pre-service training for supervisors.

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In-service staff training

Early Head Start programs must establish and implement a systematic approach to staff training and professional development, with the potential for academic credit when possible. The training and professional development system must assist staff and volunteers in acquiring or increasing the knowledge and skills needed to provide high quality, comprehensive services within the scope of their job responsibilities. This training and professional development must be directed toward improving the ability of staff and volunteers to deliver services required by the Office of Head Start. At a minimum, the training and professional development system must include the following:

  • A minimum of 15 hours of staff professional development per year;
  • Training on methods to handle suspected or known child abuse and neglect cases, as aligned with applicable federal, state, local, and tribal law;
  • Training for child and family services staff on best practices for implementing family engagement strategies in a systemic way; and
  • Research-based approaches to professional development for education staff.

The Office of Head Start does not require specific in-service training for supervisors. Local programs determine their own in-service training requirements.

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Training materials

Training materials are available on the Early Childhood Learning and Knowledge Center website.

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Qualified trainers

The individuals who provide staff training and the qualifications of those individuals vary by local program.

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Technical assistance

ACF's Office of Head Start and Office of Child Care collaborate to provide training and technical assistance (T/TA) across early care and education programs to support the delivery of high quality services to children and families. The T/TA consists of (1) direct funding to grantees; (2) regional T/TA specialists; and (3) six national centers. These centers act collectively as comprehensive providers of resources, information, and training to build early care and education program capacity and promote consistent practices across communities, states, tribes, and territories.

Training and technical assistance materials are available on the Early Childhood Learning and Knowledge Center website.

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Implementation notes

The information contained on this page was last updated in June 2020. Recommended further reading lists the sources for this information. In addition, the information contained in this profile was reviewed for accuracy by the Office of Head Start in February 2020. HomVEE reserves the right to edit the profile for clarity and consistency.

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