​​​BCMW Head Start’s mission is to engage and prepare low income children and families for success in school and throughout life by providing opportunities, experiences, resources and advocacy. We respect all individuals and believe they deserve a chance to reach their full potential.

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​​​​We Empower the whole heart, the whole child, the whole family to reach their full potential.

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BCMW Head Start

BCMW Head Start is a federally funded, comprehensive child development program which strives to promote a rich, nurturing, learning environment for families of Bond, Clinton, Marion, Washington and Franklin Counties, offering exciting opportunities and ensuring the highest level of services.  We are committed to continuing the proud heritage of serving children and families that has been our trademark since 1965.

BCMW Head Start has a long tradition of delivering comprehensive and high quality services designed to foster development in low-income children. We are funded for 440 children in a 5 county area. We provide a range of individualized services in the areas of Education & Early Childhood Development; Medical, Dental & Mental Health; Nutrition; and Parent Engagement. In addition, the entire range of Head Start services is responsive and appropriate to each child and family's developmental, ethnic, cultural and linguistic heritage and experiences.

Our program must adhere to specific Head Start Program Performance Standards, Regulations (Head Start Act) and DCFS Standards. These requirements define the services that we are to provide to the children and families we serve. They constitute the expectations and requirements that our program must meet. The standards are designed to ensure that goals and objectives are implemented successfully, that the Head Start philosophy continues to thrive, and that we maintain the highest possible quality in the provision of Head Start services.


BCMW Head Start program is family centered and designed to support parents as the most important influence in their child's life. The program strives to meet the needs and interest of the families enrolled through a variety of activities, trainings and educational opportunities.

Head Start's comprehensive approach to services is achieved through partnering with area social services agencies, local businesses, clubs, colleges, Pre-K programs, health service providers, community volunteers and public schools. These organizations and agencies have agreements and/or memorandums of understanding with our program.


BCMW Head Start implements the Creative Curriculum, a research based curriculum for preschool children based on five components: how children develop and learn; the learning environment; what children learn; the teacher's role and the family's role.

The Head Start Child Development and Early Learning Framework is utilized to promote positive outcomes for all children 3-5 years old. It represents the foundation of the Head Start Approach to School Readiness. It aligns with and builds from the five essential domains of school readiness identified by the National Education Goals Panel and lays out essential areas of learning and development. The Framework is used to guide curriculum implementation and assessment to plan teaching and learning experiences that align to school readiness goals and track children's progress across developmental domains.

School Readiness Goals are developed with input from parents, Head Start teachers, kindergarten teachers and LEA's.

The goals are as follows:

Social & Emotional Development

Children will develop positive relationships with children & adults & are able to function as a part of a group.

Children will demonstrate ability to regulate their emotions & behavior.

Physical Development & Health

Children will demonstrate ability to take care of their personal needs & practice basic health & safety rules.

Children will demonstrate ability to move with balance, coordination & control.

Children will demonstrate increased eye hand coordination & use of fine motor skills.

Cognition & General Knowledge

Children will demonstrate beginning understanding & recognition of numbers, shapes, patterns & number concepts for use in every day routines.

Children will show beginning understanding of family & community characteristics & jobs.

Children will show ability to plan, observe, & explore natural resources, living things, & simple tools & equipment.

Language & Literacy

Children will demonstrate ability to understand & express increasing varied & complex language.

Children who are dual language learners will demonstrate proficiency in their home language & progress in acquiring receptive & expressive English.

Children will demonstrate a beginning awareness of the printed word & develop book appreciation.

Children will demonstrate letter recognition & phonological awareness.

Children will understand purposes of writing & demonstrate beginning use of writing tools to convey meaning through written representations, symbols & letters.

Approaches to Learning

Children will exhibit interest & participate in a variety of creative experiences.

Children will exhibit curiosity, demonstrate the desire to learn & persistence in completing tasks.

BCMW Head Start implemented the usage of iStartSmart mobile HATCH Tablets in August 2015. Each classroom and Home Base is equipped with the preschool learning tablet that uses technology to build school readiness skills and improve outcomes.

Pre-loaded with research-based early learning software and apps hand-picked by experts, it monitors child progress as they play, showing adults exactly what each child knows! Unique reporting tools allow administrators to see faster child learning results allowing for personalized learning and refocused instruction.

BCMW Head Start implemented Teaching Strategies GOLD (TSGold) to complement its curriculum several years ago. The Teaching staff and Education team have been trained in the technology to provide a seamless system for assessing children from birth through kindergarten. Extensive field tests have shown it to be both valid and reliable.

The 38 objectives at the heart of TSGOLD guide teachers through the assessment cycle. helping them to link observable behavior to essential early learning requirements and predict likely next steps in every area of development and learning.

The objectives cover 10 areas of development and learning, indicated below. Many of the objectives also include dimensions that guide teachers' thinking about various aspects of a given objective and help clarify the behavior it addresses.

1. Literacy
2.  Mathematics
3.  Science & Technology
4.  Social Studies
5.  The Arts

6.  English Language Acquisition

7.  Social Emotional
8.  physical
9.  Language
10.  Cognitive

BCMW Head Start, in partnership with the local communities, holds Book Drives throughout January and February to collect new and slightly used books. Events are planned during Dr. Seuss week to distribute the books to children and their family in an effort to promote literacy. Book walks, Bingo, Ring-around the Rosie and Minute to Win It, are just a few of the parent/child activities planned allowing the children an opportunity to win numerous books.

BCMW Head Start has formed a male involvement program titled, Heroes' United. This group was created to encourage positive male role model in the lives of our children.  Male figures and their children are united throughout the program year for special activities and events to foster and promote positive mentoring for the next generation.