Dear Member of Congress:
Head Start is our country’s most successful early learning program. It has been the most important social and educational investment in children, families, and communities the United States has ever undertaken. Head Start was launched in 1965 as a comprehensive child development program and over the last 60 years it has provided opportunity and care to more than 38 million vulnerable children and their families.
Early Head Start children show significantly better social-emotional, language, and cognitive development. Children who attend Early Head Start and transition to Head Start are more ready for kindergarten than children who do not attend Head Start. Children that participate in Head Start programs receive innumerable benefits. These advantages appear immediately, last a lifetime, and even have an effect on other generations.
But now, there is a proposal in Congress to cut Head Start by $750 million for the next fiscal year, depriving roughly 80,000 children access to this critical program.
This reduction in Head Start funding will have heartbreaking consequences by depriving an entire generation of vulnerable American children the opportunity to succeed in school and in life. Reduced funding will lead to staff cuts, empty classrooms, and fewer children and families being served. We already know the challenges the lack of child care has had on the ability of parents, especially moms, to work. With cuts like this, parents will further be forced to leave jobs or their own schooling due to a lack of affordable, quality early learning care for their children. The proposed cuts will simply make the climb to self-sufficiency and life success that much steeper for far too many American children and their families.
Congress must protect and expand the programs that help our families and children thrive, not cut them. We urge you to oppose cuts to Head Start funding and support our littlest learners, their families, and our economy by supporting this critical program!