DOWNINGTOWN, PA — This week, Representative Chrissy Houlahan announced Federal grants totaling $4,730,485 to the Head Start Programs at the Berks County Intermediate Unit and the Chester County Intermediate Unit.
This money helps fund early childhood education, particularly among English Language learners, in both Chester and Berks counties. Studies indicate that Head Start participation improves a student’s chance of pursuing and completing higher education and contributes positively to both economic and behavioral outcomes.
“I’m immensely proud of and grateful to both the Berks County Intermediate Unit and the Chester County Intermediate Unit,” said Houlahan. “This week, I witnessed some of the work they do and recognize just how important it is to the youngest members of our community. Head Start provides a basis for literacy and enables kids to be on a successful pathway as lifetime learners. As a former educator, I know how critical these federal funds are, and it was my privilege to share the news with our fantastic Head Start programs.”
“Quality early childhood programs set the foundation for life-long learning and success,” said Dr. Jill Hackman, Executive Director of the Berks County Intermediate Unit. “The grant funds awarded to the Berks County Head Start program will make a significant impact to more than 800 Berks County children and their families. Children enrolled in the program are provided with skills that place a focus on school readiness which are necessary for future success in school as well as later in life. In addition, the BCIU places priority on the ‘whole child’ by focusing on family engagement, a collaborative process through which early childhood professionals, families, and children build positive and goal-oriented relationships. We are very fortunate to have the continued support of our Pennsylvania federal legislators and thank them for their recognition of the importance of early childhood education and intervention programs.”
“Head Start funding is vital to serving our youngest and most vulnerable learners,” said Dr. George Fiore, Executive Director of the Chester County Intermediate Unit. “Thanks to this funding, we are able to provide quality preschool programs to nearly 700 children through the Head Start program; and, thereby allowing preschoolers from economically disadvantaged families to start school at the same level of preparedness as their peers from more advantaged homes.”
Source: Representative Chrissy Houlahan, Representing the 6th District of Pennsylvania
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