Options for Full-Day Services for Children Participating in Head Start . Parent Involvement


WCDC has an excellent record of parent involvement. Their FY 94 PIR showed that 92 percent of parents attended at least one parent education session, and 86 percent of parents volunteered in the classroom.

Parent involvement is greatly enhanced by a Job Corps' requirement that each parent spend the morning in Head Start one week of each month. It is simply a part of their Job Corps schedule to volunteer to spend time at Head Start. There also are many ways in which Head Start staff members encourage parent involvement. For instance, each teacher keeps a journal for each child, writing daily about the child and about activities that the parent might do at home to enhance the child's learning. Journals go home with the child at least twice a week, to give parents a chance to read about their child's activities, accomplishments, and other issues, and to give parents a chance to write to the teacher with comments, questions, and responses. Parent meetings are held in the evenings, lasting about an hour and a half. These (and fund raising activities) bring together town and Job Corps parents.

Job Corps also supports parent involvement by scheduling a class for all students in basic parenting skills. The course is taught by a counselor and other staff members, and its content is accepted by both Head Start and Job Corps.