What is Head Start Illinois?
Illinois Head Start is a federally funded program that promotes education for children from birth to age five for low-income to moderate-income families by enhancing their cognitive, social and emotional development. Head Start programs provide a learning environment that helps children’s growth in many areas such as literacy, language and social and emotional development. Head Start program also emphasizes the role of parents as their child’s first and most important teacher.
Many Head Start programs also provide Early Head Start, which serves infants, toddlers, and pregnant women and their families who have incomes below the Federal poverty income level.
Do You Qualify for Head Start Illinois?
To qualify for Illinois Head Start, you must be enrolled in a qualifying social service program (see below):
- Must be a resident of the state of Illinois
- You have a child between the ages of 0 to 5 living with you
- You receive Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP, formerly known as Food Stamps) benefits or
- You receive Temporary Assistance or
- You receive Code A Supplemental Security Income (SSI Living Alone)
- OR your income must be below 150% of the federal poverty guidelines.
How to apply for Illiois Head Start?
To apply for Head Start and Early Head Start, contact the program serving your community using the Head Start Locator. Your local program will provide the required forms and answer your questions. They will also tell you what documents you should bring with you to apply.
To find a Head Start or Early Head Start program near you, call 1-866-763-6481 (toll-free) or use the Head Start Locator: