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- Who is Region XI Head Start serving and what are Region XI Head Start families’ resources and needs?
- How are Region XI children doing at the beginning of the program year?
- What are AI/AN Region XI Head Start children’s home and community experiences?
The American Indian and Alaska Native Head Start Family and Child Experiences Survey (AI/AN FACES 2015) is the first national study of Region XI American Indian and Alaska Native (AI/AN) Head Start children, families, and programs. Region XI Head Start programs serve children and families in programs operated by federally recognized AI/AN tribes (see Box 1 for more information). Since 1997, the Head Start Family and Child Experiences Survey (FACES) has been a regular source of nationally representative data on Head Start programs, centers, classrooms, children, and families. Until the 2015–2016 program year, however, FACES had not been conducted in Region XI AI/AN Head Start programs. This was due in part to the time and resources required to engage in the intensive community-based planning and implementation process needed to successfully carry out the study in partnership with Region XI Head Start programs and communities.
This research brief provides a national portrait of the characteristics, development, and well-being of children and families in Region XI Head Start at the beginning of the program year, using data from American Indian and Alaska Native Head Start Family and Child Experiences Survey (AI/AN FACES 2015).
The purpose of this brief is to describe Region XI Head Start children and families’ characteristics, development, and well-being at the start of the program year. The findings provide insight on areas of growth, as well as areas that could be targeted for support and improvement.
Key Findings and Highlights
- The majority of children in Region XI Head Start are AI/AN (81 percent).
- A large majority of Region XI children (90 percent) were told a story at least once within the last week. About 63 percent were told stories at least three times in the past week.
- On average, using standard scores, Region XI Head Start children score below other children of the same age in language, literacy, and math at the beginning of the program year.
- No matter what language was spoken at home, almost all parents of Region XI AI/AN children (91 percent of children who are spoken to only in English at home and 99 percent of children who are spoken to in a native language at home) believe that it is very or somewhat important for their child to learn the native language.
For AI/AN FACES 2015, we selected a sample to represent all children enrolled in Region XI Head Start in fall 2015. We selected a nationally representative sample of Region XI Head Start programs from the 2012–2013 Head Start Program Information Report, with one to two centers per program and two to four classrooms per center. Within each classroom, we selected all children for the study. In total, 21 programs, 36 centers, 73 classrooms, and 1,049 children participated in the study.
The sample used for this brief includes 882 children who were enrolled in Region XI Head Start in fall 2015.11 All findings are weighted to represent this population.
Barofsky, Meryl Yoches, Hoard, Laura, and the AI/AN FACES 2015 Workgroup. “Region XI American Indian and Alaska Native Head Start: A Portrait of Children and Families.” OPRE Report #2018-71. Washington, DC: Office of Planning, Research, and Evaluation, Administration for Children and Families, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 2018.
- AI/AN FACES 2015:
- American Indian and Alaska Native Head Start Family and Child Experiences Survey 2015