Head Start sees kids meet developmental goals - WREX.com – Rockford’s News Leader

Head Start sees kids meet developmental goals

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ROCKFORD (WREX) -

"It's helpful that I can give teachers the tools they need to help the children in their classrooms," Jeneva Davis, the curriculum specialist at Trinity Day Care says.  

One of those tools for Trinity Day Care is the Early Head Start program. It's a plan that helps make sure Winnebago County's most vulnerable get the educational resources they need. 

"They work on all sorts of skills so they work on social skills, they're working on writing skills when they do art," Davis says. 

The new data shows more than 70 percent of kids in the Early Head Start and Head Start programs met their developmental goals last school year. Those goals include communication, motor, problem solving and for kids ages 3 to 5 -- that even includes math and language skills. City leaders say those are tools are essential to make sure children start off on the right track early in life. 

"The earlier we intervene and provide high quality education especially for the children and families facing some of the biggest social challenges -- the better our chances are of reducing those negative social outcomes," George Davis, the executive director of Rockford's Human Services. 

Dyanna Walker says she's has experience working in early education with Rockford Public Schools and she made it known that she wasn't a fan of the program when she ran for the 10th ward alderman seat. 

"We had spent millions of dollars and i could not find data on it," Walker says.  

But after seeing the new numbers, she says she's changed her mind. 

"It's very encouraging because it's very important to capture children at the most early age so they're not going into school behind," Walker says.

Head Start program leaders say the next order of business is figuring out how it can expand its services to help more children.

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