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EARLY HEAD START FOCUSES ON 6 DEVELOPMENTAL AREAS Social Emotional Children develop confidence, identity and healthy relationships with adults and other children.

Physical Children demonstrate gross motor skills, fine motor skills and safe and healthy habits. United Way of Acadiana Early Head Start (EHS) program provides, at no cost to families, early childhood education and home-based child development services for qualifying families with young children 0-3 years of age, as well as prenatal services for expecting women.

Language Children use expressive and receptive language, develop communication skills and distinguish sounds.


In partnership with the community and participating

Children become problem-solvers and show the ability to connect past, present and future experiences.

families, EHS is dedicated to creating a comprehensive, culturally sensitive, nurturing, safe and healthy learning environment in which children and families are inspired to reach their full potential.

As a result of a grant received from the Office of Head

Literacy Children express an interest in books, identify letters and notice rhyme, alliteration and smaller units of sound.

Start through the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Administration for Children and Families, EHS


services were provided to 154 children in Lafayette

Children develop and use mathematical skills and concepts.

Parish’s 70501, 70503, 70506 and 70507 zip codes and children in Vermilion Parish. Enrollment priorities included children with disabilities, children in foster care and homeless families.  Of the 154 children served 100% received free hearing and vision screenings.83% obtained physical exams and 71% received dental screenings.

Our overall school readiness goal is that all children attending a complete program year will show 85% improvement in one or more essential domains in becoming school ready.


BOTH CENTERS MAINTAIN PROFICIENCY RATING BY THE LOUISIANA EHS utilizes Teaching Strategies GOLD, CLASS and Creative Curriculum to provide ongoing assessments and evaluations of each child’s developmental progress. These assessments incorporate 38 learning objectives based on school readiness standards and includes evidence based predictors of school success.  Partners for a Healthy Baby is a researched based curriculum used in the home-based program.  Through these assessments, staff work to ensure that children are developmentally ready to enter kindergarten ready to learn.  Results from the 2018-19 Teaching Strategies Gold assessments indicated a 91% improvement in one-or more of the essential domains of social emotional, physical, language, literacy, cognitive and mathematics development.  This percentage exceeded our school readiness goal of children indicating an 85% improvement.  Both centers maintain proficiency rating by the Louisiana Department of Education.



Results reflect assessments conducted in October 2018 thru May 2019 Children attending EHS exceeded the school readiness goals by 6%.

Assessments in the literacy area exceeded national average by 48%.

Children's Spring 2019 assessment scores in all 6 areas increased by no less than 67% over Fall 2018 assessments and exceeded the national averages in all 6 areas.

Assessments indicated a 10.93% increase in the language domain between October 2018 and May 2019.

Children scored 51% higher than the national average in the cognitive domain.

There was a 6.80% increase in the mathematics domain between Fall of 2018 and Spring 2019 assessments.

PARENTAL ENGAGEMENT In the 2018-19 school session, 278 parents donated 11,448 hours of service to EHS. EHS recognizes that parents are their child’s first and most important teachers, therefore, we strive to build a strong partnership with parents, providing them with engagement opportunities to include attending or serving on the Parent Committee, serving on the Policy Council and/or Health Services Advisory Committee or simply volunteering in the classroom or for a center activity. Parents in our homebased program participate in weekly home visits by engaging in activities with their child and the homebased teacher and by suggesting ideas and activities to include on their weekly lesson plans.  Parents also have an opportunity to participate in socialization activities. Meet the Darby's: The Darby Family has a 2 year old child, JD, enrolled in our program.  There is a family history of autism spectrum disorder and intellectual disabilities identified in both parents. In spite of these disabilities, the parents are the primary caretakers of their son.  The Darby’s do not have transportation and live approximately 1.5 miles from the Abbeville Center.  Although Mr. Darby has a history of asthma, he walks every day to the Abbeville Center to drop off his son and pick him up from school. Our staff has worked closely with the Darby’s to connect them to resources available in the community and they recently obtained transportation assistance from local community partners. Additionally, Ms. Darby has successfully completed required courses needed to obtain her GED.   Our families appreciate the educational support we are providing to their children and value their partnership with us, which often includes connecting them to resources available in the community.

Give. Advocate. Volunteer.


Year-round engagement has been a concept introduced to Early Head Start as a strategy that allows us to increase awareness of our work, generate in-kind donations and resources for our children and families and provide meaningful ways to connect the community to opportunities to get involved in early childhood education. This type of approach brings together community partners, local businesses and individual volunteers and is vital to the success of our program. We recognize that we cannot do this work alone and we need partnerships with our local school systems, involvement in educational coalitions and committees, collaborations with local nonprofits and human resources and expertise of local volunteers who are willing to lend a hand, read a story or simply, share their time, all in support of early childhood education. Through our partnership with Early Steps, we are able to provide immediate services to children ages birth to three (3) years with diagnosed disabilities. This allows our children to obtain necessary treatment and services. Additionally, all children receive dental, speech, hearing and vision screenings, at no cost to the families. This is all possible through our long standing partnerships with Dr. John Hendry, DDS, the University Health Clinic Speech and Hearing Departments, Unitech Training Academy and the Louisiana Lions Club Cubsight program. Working side-by-side, we are able to better understand the challenges our children and families face and through these partnerships, we work together to find solutions to address the needs of the whole family.

In the 2018-19 school session, 45 community partners donated 278 hours of service valued at $138,772 in in-kind donations/services.

Meet Alma. Alma is a single parent of 10 children.  Her family has been enrolled in Early Head Start for 7 years.  During the 7 years, she has been enrolled multiple times as a pregnant mother in the Home - Based program. Her children have eventually moved on to be accepted and enrolled in the Abbeville Center-Based program.  Alma has mental health challenges, as do most of her children.  Throughout the years, Alma has experienced several hardships. She has been married and separated and has even suffered the loss of a child.  She and her children were victims of a house fire, causing them to become homeless and financially unstable.

Our staff has been committed to serving the whole family and we supported Alma through this tough stage of her life. We connected her to much needed mental health counseling and to additional resources available through our partnership with the Christian Service Center in Abbeville. She was provided hygiene and baby items, as well as food.  Our program has also provided Alma and her family with donated items obtained from community support, individuals and local agencies, such as, clothing, Walmart gift cards, hygiene products, bedding, winter coats, and car seats.  At one point, Alma expressed an interest in obtaining her GED and our Family and Community Partnership Specialist assisted her with enrolling in the local GED/Adult Literacy program.  By leveraging our existing partnerships, we are able to assist our children and families as they move toward selfsufficiency and stability.

Supporting Positive Parent-Child Relationships in the Home In the 2018-19 school session, 39 children and pregnant moms received Early Head Start services right in their own homes! For the 17 pregnant mothers, our home-based teachers provided them with resources and prenatal support to ensure the healthy development of their newborn. Our teachers visited our families once a week and worked with 22 children, providing hands-on, individualized lesson plans that enhanced the educational development of each child they encountered. Together, teacher and parents worked side-by-side forming a partnership based on a shared desire to see a child succeed in school and in life. Children in the home-based program received priority for placement in the center-based program once an opening became available. Working with pregnant moms from birth until their child turns 3 years old has truly allowed us to create lifelong partnerships with our families. The budgetary expenditures and budget for 2018 is as follows: Personnel Benefits Contractual Supplies Other Training Non-Federal Share

Actual $974,784 $204,688 $131,028 $ 76,782 $214,454 $ 35,661 $390,000

Budgeted $994,167 $215,725 $128,862 $ 53,000 $208,585 $ 35,661 $390,000




The review by the secretary and financial audit conducted in 2018 were both clear.

TO LEARN MORE ABOUT UNITED WAY OF ACADIANA EARLY HEAD START Visit www.unitedwayofacadiana.org Follow us on Facebook UWAEarlyHeadStart Contact us at (337) 706-1234


THANK YOU To our community partners, local businesses, teachers and staff for your commitment to early childhood education. Special thanks to our children and families who allow us to make a difference in our communities. The total amount of public funds received in 2018 to serve 103 children and families was $1,614,080 and the total private funds and in-kind contributions were $413,317 for a grand total of $2,027,397. EHS served 103 children with the average monthly enrollment of 98%. Our program also participated in the Child and Adult Food Program (CACFP) which reimbursed the program at rates based upon a child’s eligibility.

Profile for United Way of Acadiana

EHS 2018-2019 Annual Report  

EHS 2018-2019 Annual Report