About Us

Purpose

Collaboration, on behalf of children and families, is one of Head Startís highest priorities. Since 1990, the Administration for Children and Families (ACF) has awarded Head Start State Collaboration grants to support the development of multi-agency and public/private partnerships at the State level. Texas was one of the first states to receive this grant.

The 2007 Head Start Act, Section 642B contains provisions for the award of a collaboration grant to each State and to each national administrative office serving American Indian Head Start programs and Migrant and Seasonal Head Start programs to facilitate collaboration among Head Start and Early Head Start agencies and entities that carry out activities designed to benefit low-income children from birth to school entry and their families.

We prompt system and policy changes that benefit low-income families and children by:
  1. Assisting in developing collaborative initiatives, structures, and mechanisms.
  2. Creating linkages between Head Start and other state initiatives, service systems and our 4 priority areas- school transitions, professional development, chid care and early childhood systems and regional office priorities. To learn more about these priority areas, click here.

Head Start State Collaboration Offices (HSSCOs) exist “to facilitate collaboration among Head Start agencies and entities that carry out activities designed to benefit low income children from birth to school entry, and their families.  They provide a structure and a process for OHS to work with State agencies and local entities to leverage their common interests around young children and their families to formulate, implement, and improve state and local policy and practice. To be effective, the HSSCO director must hold a full-time position of sufficient authority and access to ensure collaboration is effective and involves a range of State agencies.”


Scope of Work

HSSCOs facilitate collaboration among Head Start agencies and State and local entities as charged by the Office of Head Start in the Regional Office. HSSCOs coordinate and lead efforts for diverse entities to work together by using the following methods:

  • Communication: Convene stakeholder groups for information sharing and planning.  Be a conduit of information between the regional office and the State and local early childhood system.
  • Access: Facilitate Head Start agencies’ access to, and utilization of, appropriate entities so Head Start children and families can secure needed services and critical partnerships are formalized. 
  • Systems: Support policy, planning, and implementation of cross agency State systems for early childhood, including the State Advisory Council, that include and serve the Head Start community.

These methods are used to carry out the activities that are focused around the 6 priority areas.

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