Policy Principles

Download the Head Start California Policy Platform


Guiding Principles


Increase Head Start wages to be commensurate with the education and training required.


Align poverty eligibility guidelines, staffing requirements, wages, and funding to strengthen the ability of Head Start programs to serve families and children.


Reduce and simplify regulations to remove unnecessary administrative burdens and free agencies to focus on serving children.


Give service providers the flexibility to adapt services and leverage funding to fit local need, and to innovate in designing new services.


Advance policies that promote the economic security of vulnerable families and children.


Legislative Priorities


  • Dramatically increase wages for Head Start staff to close the wage gap between Head Start and TK-12 teachers.
  • Adjust income-eligibility guidelines to account for state, regional or local costs of living.
  • Expand categorical eligibility.
  • Increase funding to the state reimbursement rate system to close the wage gap between Head Start and TK-12 teachers.
  • Ease or offer flexibility in workforce requirements to improve workforce recruitment and retention.
  • Simplify CCTR regulations to align with Early Head Start.
  • Improve integration of Head Start in the state ECE system.



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