Head Start Health Managers Descriptive Study Project - Overview

The goals of the Head Start Health Manager Descriptive Survey include 1) to describe the characteristics of Health Managers and related staff in Head Start (HS) and Early Head Start (EHS) programs; 2) to identify the current landscape of health programs and services being offered to children and families; 3) to determine how health initiatives are prioritized, implemented, and sustained; and 4) to identify the programmatic features and policy levers that exist to support health services including staffing, environment, and community collaboration.

These objectives will be accomplished through an online survey of all HS/EHS Health Managers, including American Indian/Alaskan Native and Migrant and Seasonal Head Start programs that focuses on:

  • the demographic characteristics and professional background of the Health Managers and related staff;
  • the health assessments, services and community linkages offered to child and families by the HS/EHS program;
  • the interactions between the Health Mangers, other HS/EHS staff, and the Health Services Advisory Committee;
  • opportunities for professional development and capacity building of HS/EHS health staff;
  • how Health Managers prioritize, implement, monitor, evaluate, and sustain health initiatives; and
  • the community and policy context within which they operate.

The survey responses will be further informed by semi-structured interviews conducted with a subsample of Health Managers, teachers, and family services workers. In addition to primary data collection, the study will build a geo-coded database with measures of health and the determinants of health to provide context for the analyses of the quantitative and qualitative data. The project will be informed by a Technical Workgroup that will provide input on the study design, implementation, analysis, and final products. A Tribal Expert Workgroup will be formed to review analysis, reporting, and dissemination of the final products.

The point of contact is Laura Hoard.