In Head Start/Early Head Start parents are:
- Engaged in their child's growth and development, along with program activities;
- Hired to work in the program, which provides them with employment and an opportunity to enhance their parenting skills; and
- Recruited to participate in program governance by serving on the policy council. In fact, Head Start performance standards require that at least half of policy council members be parents of children currently enrolled in the program.
Parents and families also work together with staff on a variety of self-selected goals and priorities for themselves and their children. Goals may range from quitting smoking and offering more nutritious meals at home to getting a GED and starting an Individual Development Account (savings plan).