What We Do

The Head Start and Early Head Start programs are administered by the Office of Head Start, within the Administration for Children and Families (ACF), U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS).

The Office of Head Start (OHS) administers grant funding and oversight to the 1,700 public and private nonprofit and for-profit agencies that provide Head Start services. OHS also provides federal policy direction and a training and technical assistance (T/TA) system to assist grantees in providing comprehensive services to eligible young children and their families.

The Office of Head Start was appropriated $8,598,095,000 for FY 2015, including

  • $7,788,424,000 was awarded directly to public agencies, private nonprofit and for-profit organizations, tribal governments and school systems to operate Head Start programs in local communities.
  • $203,322,000 was appropriated towards training and technical assistance to improve the quality of services provided by grantees. Half that amount was awarded directly to grantees to be used for local T/TA, and the other half funded the national system.
  • $500,000,000 for Early Head Start-Child Care Partnership and Early Head Start Expansion.

More details around OHS funding can be found in the FY 2015 Fact Sheet. To learn about how to apply for a Head Start grant, see the Funding Opportunity section.

Last Reviewed: July 5, 2016