About the Office of Head Start

Head Start Services

Head Start promotes the school readiness of young children from low-income families through agencies in their local community. Head Start and Early Head Start programs support the comprehensive development of children from birth to age 5, in centers, child care partner locations, and in their own homes. Head Start services include early learning, health, and family well-being.


What We Do

The Office of Head Start (OHS) administers grant funding and oversight to the 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.


Leadership

Dr. Deborah Bergeron is the director of the Office of Head Start. Known as "Dr. B" to former students and teachers, she has spent three decades in pre-K–12 public education as a classroom teacher and elementary and high school administrator. In the course of her career, Dr. B also started, grew, and ultimately sold her own educational services company. She holds a bachelor’s degree from Texas State University. She earned a master’s in education leadership and doctorate in education policy from George Mason University.

During her tenure as a school administrator, she specialized in school improvement. Her focus was on academic achievement and school climate. Dr. B will use her experience as an elementary principal and her strong background in pre-K–12 instructional leadership to provide unique insights into how Head Start can support our most vulnerable children to become school ready. She hopes to spend a great deal of her time visiting Regional Offices and specific Head Start programs. Dr. B most looks forward to spending time with all of the children, teachers, and program directors who are her inspiration!


History of Head Start

Head Start was founded as part of Lyndon B. Johnson’s War on Poverty in 1965. Since then, Head Start has grown from an eight-week demonstration project to include full day/year services and numerous program options. Head Start has served over 30 million children and their families in urban and rural areas in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and the U.S. territories. Head Start is celebrating 50 years of service in 2015.

Last Reviewed: May 18, 2018