Head Start and HIPPY Better Together: Examining Current Collaborations and the Outcomes for Children
AbstractThe purpose of this project was to examine the blending of two research-supported early childhood programs, one delivered in the classroom - Head Start and one delivered by parents in the home – HIPPY. Head Start and HIPPY share the common goals of preparing children for kindergarten by closing the achievement gap and empowering parents as first and best teachers for their children. Data on the effectiveness of Head Start/HIPPY collaborations was collected through focus group interviews with teachers, parents, and administrators. Themes discovered through qualitative analysis included the recognition of home visiting as a way to provide services to families; the added ability to provide services for children and families; better communication between all parties involved in the collaboration; and better outcomes for both the children and the parents; and the difficulty of including all the requirements of both programs in her work with families. The major recommendation for future programs was to plan for the continuation of services from the grant writing stage. Another was to partner with school districts in order to track the long-term outcomes for children. And the most frequent recommendation was to adjust case-loads to reflect the additional work required for the collaboration.
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