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Progress is Possible at Clareview Head Start

E4C’s Clareview Head Start (CHS) is a comprehensive preschool and family support program for families with low incomes. Each child attends the program for four half days per week. A team of professionals, including teachers, key workers, family support workers, speech pathologists, occupational therapists, and other health professionals, work with the child and family to enhance growth and development. Parents are involved in setting goals for themselves and their child over the course of a year.

Susan shares her story of how she and her children benefitted from their participation with this program. Susan’s son, Joseph, started going to CHS in September. Joseph had moderate delays in his fine motor skill development, and Susan was concerned about him entering kindergarten the following year. Through his experience at Clareview Head Start, Joseph made remarkable progress and he is now confident in his fine motor abilities. Joseph has been a quiet and shy child, and through CHS, Susan is learning about his personality and his learning style. She is better able to understand how he processes information, and, therefore, better equipped to communicate with him at home.

CHS became an even larger part of Susan’s weekly routine when she joined the Parent Group and her daughter became enrolled in Early Head Start. Her daughter, McKenna, is two years old and has improved in her
speaking and social skills. McKenna now understands about sharing her possessions, and she has developed an appreciation of crafts. Her speech skills have improved so much that she knows all the words to songs during
circle time. As an added bonus, when the clean-up song is sung around her home, she starts cleaning up without a fuss!

Clareview Head Start staff describes Susan as a role model for fellow parent participants, through her actions and how she parents her children. Susan has volunteered to be the secretary on the Parent Advisory Committee and she is “counting pennies” to fundraise for CHS’ new playground. Susan says, “If it wasn’t for this program, my kids wouldn’t be progressing as they are. For everything they’ve been given, it is worthwhile for me to give back what I can.”

When thinking ahead five years down the road, Susan sees her kids succeeding in school. She suspects that her son would have been lost and in the principal’s office if not for interventions at CHS. Education is important to all generations of her family, and she’s happy that her kids are learning the value of it early and that they are excited to get on the school bus each day.