The Illinois Department of Human Services (IDHS) provided services through contractual delegate agreements with Four agencies in Illinois, serving the entire state and three counties of Indiana. The delegate agencies providing services July 1, 2020 to June 30, 2021 were:
- Del Valle Migrant Head Start, in Oswego
- Rainbow Learning, in Kankakee and Sheldon
- Princeville CUSD #326, in Princeville
- Migrant Education, in Cobden
The Head Start program was funded by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Administration for Children and Families, Office of Head Start, which included funds to assist with COVID-19 expenses this grant season, and supported by the Illinois Department of Human Services Division of Family and Community Services and by Illinois General Revenue through the Bureau of Quality Initiatives. The U.S. Department of Agriculture reimburses meal costs through the Child and Adult Care Food Program, administered by the Illinois State Board of Education.
||Percent of Total Budget
|Illinois General Revenue & 3rd Party Contributions
Ninety-eight percent of the total federal budget is allocated to delegate program operations, under the line item 6.f. contractual. Non-federal share is raised through General Revenue and agency and private donations of goods, and services.
|3rd Party- Contractual Delegates
Families eligible for MSHS must earn 51% or more of their income from employment in agriculture and must be doing agricultural work at the time of enrollment, or shortly thereafter. Families must verify that their primary income is from agricultural labor. Illinois Migrant & Seasonal Head Start defines "agricultural labor" to include: fruit & vegetables, mushroom growing, flower farming, plant or tree nurseries, greenhouses, forestry, orchards, sod farming, grain/corn storage facilities, stock, dairy, poultry, livestock, fish, fur-farming; employment connected to fruit, vegetables, and grains packaging and canning, cultivating the soil, raising, detasseling and harvesting any agricultural or horticultural commodity, orchards, dairying, bees/apiaries; including the raising, shearing, feeding, processing, training, and caring for livestock; swine, sheep, beef cattle, ponies, or horses, and poultry, fish, and fur-bearing animals and wildlife. Not eligible are landscaping and grounds-keeping.
Parents must furnish, as proof of annual income, one of the following: Income Tax Form 1040 or 1040A, W-2 forms from every source of income, pay stubs with year-to-date total, or written statements from employers. Homeless families who do not have documents can be enrolled immediately, giving them sufficient time to obtain the documents if possible.
Centers operate on schedules that accommodate parents' work hours and weeks: from eight weeks in one location to seven months in another. In fiscal year 2021, the program was impacted by COVID-19 and only served 206 children from 136 families. A total of 20 children with disability service plans: 6-IFSP and 14-IEPs. The average monthly enrollment was 27.30%.
The audit of IDHS had no findings related to the Head Start program. Independent audits of each of the delegates found no material weaknesses.
Medical and Dental Examinations
Although major modifications had to be made in the transporting of and/or arrangements for children to receive screenings, staff made every effort to make sure that Immunizations, Physicals, Well-Baby Checks, Hemoglobin, Lead and TB tests were up to date and tracked effectively. Dental exams, cleanings and fluoride treatments completed within HSPPS required time frame.
All delegates followed the EPSDT schedule from Illinois. On the online assessment, C.O.P.A., reports can be downloaded with number of children that have services completed according to the EPSDT schedule. As reported in the Office of Head Start's 2021 Program Information Report (PIR), 176 children were up to date on a schedule of age-appropriate preventive and primary health care according to State's EPSDT at the end of the enrollment year. These included screenings for tuberculosis, height and weight, hemoglobin, and lead. The children that did not receive all screenings and physicals were due to leaving the center within 30 days of enrollment. Eighty nine percent of the children are up to date on all immunizations, or have received all immunizations possible at this time, appropriate for their age. Sixty-four percent of the children enrolled in 2020-21 year had healthy weight for child's age and sex; Eighteen percent were classified as Overweight and 17% as Obese.
Of the total children ages 3 - 5, 58 had the formal exam completed; 15 of these children needed dental treatment, of which 13 completed it. Children that did not complete the exam were enrolled less than 30 days. The children also had cleaning and fluoride treatment completed.
Eighty-four infant and toddler children are up to date according to the dental periodicity schedule in the state's EPSDT schedule.
Parent Involvement Activities
Delegates were able to secure donations for PPE and food for families in need to maintain themselves and children healthy. They also engaged families in program activities virtually or holding meetings in outside areas.
Delegates provided educational materials and activities to families while receiving remote services. Forty-seven percent of the home visits made to parents in 2020 were to deliver educational activities and materials primarily due to the provision of remote services.
Remote services allowed the families to work together doing the educational activities and increased the participation of fathers working with their children. One father reported that his child told him that he did not help him do the activities as his friend's father did. Father admits to feeling guilty and thereafter made certain that he planned time to work with the children.
Overall, between 80-100 percent of parents, in each delegate, participated in completing the activities and a large percentage were fathers doing the activities with their children. Additionally, fathers also participated in Family Wellness virtual trainings such as Kid Yoga provided by the Del Valle Delegate when they noticed that children and families were demonstrating higher percentages of stress than usual. Furthermore, two mothers from Del Valle were determined to finish their GED's despite the pandemic so the director worked with St. Augustine College to make it happen.
Teaching staff qualifications
All teaching staff is Head Start qualified and all delegate education coordinators have bachelors' degrees in early childhood education.
Eight six percent of Preschool teachers have a Baccalaureate degree and 14% have an associate degree. Forty-two percent of Infant-toddler teachers have a Baccalaureate degree, 21% have an associate degree and 38% have a CDA.
According to a 2018 IL Department of Human Services report on salary and staffing, the average hourly wage for a teacher is $12.50. The state-funded Bright Futures program teachers earn an average of $22.07 an hour. The MHS teacher earns a starting hourly wage of $12.47. This puts MHS teachers at a lower hourly rate then an average teacher and a teacher working for a Bright Futures program within the state. MHS experiences higher turnover rates due to the short term of employment and lack of fringe benefits.
Providing benefits and a livable wage to all staff should be a goal of any responsible employer especially the Head Start program which strives to be an instrument in the elimination of poverty in this country. The same goal should apply to the staff; many who live in poverty.
All delegates are offering PBC Coaching to their staff and they also offer Coaching using MyTeachstone-staff have choice of coaching method. In 2020, seven teaching staff received PBC among them they completed 20 hours of coaching each month-averaging between 2-3 hours each. Twelve staff used MyTeachstone for their coaching program. Teaching staff using MyTeachstone completed 8 hours of coaching with an additional 57 hours of self-directed study. Coaches using MyTeachstone completed 1.5 hours of recommended coaching with an additional 8 hours of self-directed study. Overall staff and supervisors where content with the results, of either method.
Illinois Migrant and Seasonal Head Start (IMSHS) use the Creative Curriculum® for Infants, Toddlers & Twos in its Infant toddler classrooms and Creative Curriculum® for Preschoolers in its Preschool classrooms. Curricula chosen by IMSHS contain both resources guiding interest area and room preparation as well as instructional content reflecting the most current research. Curricula has been recognized to meet the HSPPS and are evidence-based early childhood curricula which include empirically based scope and sequences grounded in developmental theory.
Delegates complement the curricula with the following: to support the children's language development, the teaching staff will use Planned Language Approach strategies-particularly the Big Five-for all children; to support fitness and healthy development, the teaching staff will use strategies from "I am Learning, I am moving"; and, to support self-discipline the teaching staff will use "Positive Discipline" strategies.
Teaching staff removed from their classroom environments any material that could not effectively be sanitized and eliminated large group activities to avoid exposure to COVID-19 virus but otherwise tried to deliver the curricula with fidelity. Education Coordinators did monthly classroom observations virtually or stationary in one part of the classroom to evaluate that Creative Curricula are implement with fidelity in each classroom. Results are analyzed and used to plan the appropriate course work; training, coaching, and/or technical assistance for staff development.
Screening and Assessment
Ages and Stages Questionnaires® (ASQ) developmental screening are used to identify concerns in children's development and ASQ-SE is used for the identification of social-emotional challenges. Both ASQ and ASQ-SE have been studied extensively and these show high reliability, internal consistency, sensitivity, and specificity.
Galileo® G-3 Assessments are used in all the classrooms to assess children's developmental levels and ongoing progress. The assessments are aligned to the Head Start Early Learning Outcomes Framework (HSELOF), Illinois Early Learning Standards and Illinois Birth-to-Three Early Learning Guidelines.
Delegates provided a combination of in-person and remote educational program during July and November 2020. This shift in services from remote to direct-obviously impacts children's developmental progress. Nonetheless, between parents and teaching staff working together, children successfully progressed in their development.
Second Language Learners
The grantee understands that it is essential that staff understand that development is influenced by children's culture and linguistic backgrounds and temperaments, among other factors; therefore, planning of learning activities, daily schedules, and the teaching practices must be premeditated by this-If not, appropriate training or coaching must be offered to staff. It is important to state that Infant and toddler classrooms will use the child's home language to enhance or promote development. English, however, not required, can be introduced at minimal levels. In preschool, English will be increased to promote higher levels of proficiency and developmental progress measured by the Galileo G3 English Acquisition Scale. Seventy-eight percent of the children in 2020-21 list Spanish as the primarily language.
Education Services for Children with Disabilities
A total of 20 children with disability service plans: 6-IFSP and 14-IEPs. Seven children are suspected of having a disability and follow up will immediately commence upon their re-enrollment. Fourteen children have speech and language delays and six children have developmental delays.
2020-2021 School Readiness Data
The IMSHS selected a broad-range School Readiness 5-year Goal to allow for the yearly objectives to address the domains of Approaches to Learning, Social and Emotional Development, Language and Literacy, Cognition, and Perceptual, Motor and Physical development. IMSHS goal and objectives are aligned with HSELOF, Illinois State Early Learning Standards and Illinois Birth-to-Three Early Learning Guidelines. The Planning Committee (grantee staff, parents, delegate staff and board members) review children's outcomes data and decide on goals for the following grant year.
Infants and toddlers (8-24 months) had and overall progress gain of 10% and knew an average of 43% of the capabilities that have been mapped to school readiness. Children between 2-3 years, had and overall progress gain of 12% and knew an average of 32% of the capabilities that have been mapped to school readiness. Preschoolers had a 6% overall progress gain and knew an average of 43% of the SR capabilities.
Overall, children's progress was about the same for those 8-18 months & 2-3 years throughout all areas of development-between 12 and 16%. 18-24-month-olds had between 4-5% in approaches to learning, cognitive development and general knowledge, and social-emotional development. However, it is not unseen for development to become stagnant in some areas for this age group.
Preschool children had between 4-12% developmental gain-the extra attention to promote math was evident by the higher percentage of progress in that area-12%.
Children primarily receiving remote services were also evaluated. Scales were modified to include only the capabilities directly associated with school readiness so that parents could assist with the assessments. Teachers sent home activities and materials for parents to complete them at home. When children were due for an assessment, teachers called parents and together decided what capabilities the child had mastered. Overall, children receiving remote services learned an average of 66% of the capabilities in their age-range