Fort Valley State University's Head Start Program received an additional $580,539 to help partner childcare sites improve their facilities.
The additional funding will serve as start-up money to provide site renovations for Head Start partners located in Crawford, Crisp, Dooly, Peach, Pulaski and Telfair Counties. These renovations may include updates to playground equipment and improvements to handicap accessibility for children.
Evelyn Byrd, director of Fort Valley State University's Head Start Program, said the additional funds are startup funds towards the Central Georgia Early Learner's Child Care Partnership Program grant awarded to FVSU's Head Start Program in March for $5.8 million. The Central Georgia Early Learner's Child Care Partnership Program grant helps to provide medical screenings and health and nutrition services for low-income families.
"This additional funding allows our partners to establish themselves as higher quality sites," Byrd said. The Head Start director mentioned how these improvements help to increase the quality of programming and infrastructure for their clients residing in rural middle Georgia counties.
In addition to the startup funds, FVSU's Head Start Program also received refunding for the Early Head Start Base Grant for $2,859,831. This grant provides funds to assist with Head Start programming and salaries for current employees.
Byrd said approximately $34,000 of the base grant funds will help provide trainings and technical assistance to Head Start employees. This training includes certifications in early childhood education, along with professional development trainings to help educators improve their teaching techniques.
"Parents feel good knowing that their children are being educated in a high quality learning environment while they attend work, look for work or go to school," Byrd said.
Head Start is a U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Program that offers free school readiness programs that include medical screenings and the teaching of literacy skills, motor skills and physical development for low-income families.
For more information about FVSU's Head Start Programs, contact Evelyn Byrd at (478) 825- 6423 or firstname.lastname@example.org.