About Us

Benton Franklin Head Start
 
Benton Franklin Head Start is a non-profit organization serving 447 age and income eligible children and families as the Head Start Grantee in Benton and Franklin Counties. Services are offered in Early Head Start and Head Start.

Early HeaStart

Designed for  children 0-35 months (has not turned 3 years of age by September 1st of the current enrollment year) you may qualify for our home-based or classroom-based Early Head Start programs. Additionally, our Early Head Start program features a Prenatal Program that consists of home visits during your pregnancy to provide education and support.


Head Start

If you have a child that is 3 or 4 years of age by August 31st of the current enrollment year you may qualify for our part-day program. The focus is on kindergarten readiness, wellness, and social and emotional development.


Meal Services

Children attending Head Start classrooms will receive two meals a day. Benton Franklin Head Start's Central Kitchen services approximately 85,565 meals a year.

Governance

Head Start's Policy Council, a parent decision-making body helps plan and develop goals for the program, approve various policies, hiring, budgets and work plans.

We also have a diverse Board of Directors. Fifteen members are active in the strategic direction of Head Start with a focus of serving all age, income eligible children in Benton and Franklin counties.

Children with Disabilities

Head Start provides Special education services in an inclusive classroom setting. Goals on a child's Individual Education Plan (IEP) and Individual Family Service Plan (IFSP) are incorporated into the child's Head Start individual education plan. Benton Franklin Head Start is proud of its inclusive classrooms so that preschool children with special education eligibility receive quality services in a least restrictive environment. 


How to Qualify/Eligibility Criteria

Family Size & Income

Benton Franklin Head Start may provide services only to families: (1) with a family income at or below the Federal poverty guidelines; (2) who are receiving certain forms of public assistance; (3) who are applying on behalf of a foster child; (4) who are currently homeless/ Benton Franklin Head Start may also serve a limited number of families with special needs who would not otherwise qualify for the program.

Automatic Eligibility

If any of the following circumstances apply, you may be automatically income eligible for Head Start programs.
  • If your family is currently receiving TANF benefits
  • If your family is currently receiving Supplemental Security Income
  • If you have a foster child placed with you through the State of Washington.
  • If your family is currently homeless.

Features of the Program

Education

Head Start's educational program is designed to meet each child's individual needs. It also aims to meet the need of the community served and its ethnic and cultural characteristics. If programs have a majority of bilingual children, for example, at least one teacher or aide must speak their native language.

Every child receives a variety of learning experiences to foster intellectual, social, and emotional growth. Children participate in indoor and outdoor play and are introduced to the concepts of words and numbers. They are encouraged to express their feelings and to develop self-confidence and the ability to get along with others. 

Health

Medical and Dental Establishing medical and dental homes is a priority for BFHS, staff work with families to ensure they are connected to medical and dental insurance as well as help them find a medical and dental home. Children also receive hearing, vision and nutrition screenings with appropriate referrals and resources offered to
families when needed. 


Nutrition | Meal time is an extension of learning by modeling language, conversation, social interaction
 and introducing new foods. The menu integrates the latest nutritional research so families are offered the healthiest meals possible. BFHS works with all families to ensure that their cultural needs are valued and special diets are accommodated for.

Mental Health | Ongoing Mental Health training and support ensures that BFHS provides high quality classroom environments that foster success, safety and wellness for each child. 



Parent Involvement

Participation in Decision Making | Parents are the most important influence on a child's development. An essential part of our program is the involvement of parents in program planning and operating activities. Many serve as members of Policy Councils and Committees and have a voice in program design.

Volunteers | Parents also volunteer in classrooms, the playground, field-trips, meal times and more. Parents receive preference for employment in Head Start for jobs they qualify for. 

Family Services

Respect for the uniqueness of each family drives the work of family service staff as it builds relationships with families and works on parent-generated goals. Family services staff provide resources and referrals, crisis
intervention, opportunities for community involvement and support to develop literacy leadership and employment skills. Parents are always invited to be involved and are informed about their child's progress. 








How to Apply

Print and fill out the Parent Interest Form.

We must be able to reach you in order to enroll your child. If you move or change your phone number after completing the application, it is your responsibility to notify Head Start.

You must provide proof of your child's date of birth with one of the following types of documents: Birth Certificate, hospital documentation etc.

Once you have completed the application, bring it to:

The Children's Center                                       Central Pasco Site
1549 SE Georgia Ave., Suite B          or           3203 W. Sylvester
Richland, WA 99354                                          Pasco, WA 993301


What happens Next?

You will be contacted, either by phone or by mail, regarding the status of your application.
Subpages (1): Contact and Locations