Building on the Promise: State Initiatives to Expand Access to Early Head Start for Young Children and Their Families

Publication Date: April 2008

Publisher: Center for Law and Social Policy

Author(s): Elizabeth DiLauro; Rachel Schumacher

Research Area: Social conditions

Type: Report

Coverage: United States


This report from CLASP and ZERO TO THREE examines actions states have taken to enhance Early Head Start (EHS). Less than 3 percent of babies and toddlers who are eligible for EHS are reached at current federal funding levels. Twenty states use at least one of four main approaches: 1) Extending the day or year of existing EHS services, 2) Expanding the capacity of existing EHS and Head Start programs to increase the number of children and pregnant women served, 3) Providing resources and assistance to child care providers to help them deliver services meeting EHS standards, and 4) Supporting partnerships between EHS and center-based and family child care providers to improve the quality of care.

The report also analyzes opportunities and challenges facing state policymakers and provides recommendations for state leaders interested in promoting better futures for at-risk children through building on Early Head Start.

Supplementary files include the Executive Summary and two state profiles detailing the approaches of Kansas and Iowa to expanding Early Head Start.