These partnerships are intended to:

  • Assist in building early childhood systems
  • Provide access to comprehensive services and support for all low-income children
  • Encourage widespread collaboration between Head Start and other appropriate programs, services, and initiatives
  • Augment Head Start's capacity to be a partner in state initiatives on behalf of children and their families
  • Facilitate the involvement of Head Start in state policies, plans, processes, and decisions affecting target populations and other low-income families 

Methods of Coordination

Methods by which State Head Start Collaboration Officers coordinate and lead efforts for diverse entities to work together include:
Communication - Convene stakeholder groups for information sharing and planning.  Be a conduit of information between the Regional Head Start Office and the State and local early childhood system.
Access - Facilitate Head Start agencies’ access to and utilization of appropriate entities so Head Start children and families can secure needed services and critical partnerships are formalized.
Systems - Support policy, planning, and implementation of cross agency State systems for early childhood, including the State Advisory Council (in Connecticut, the Early Childhood Cabinet), that include and serve the Head Start community.  

Scope of Work

As stated in the Head Start Act the Director of State Collaboration facilitates collaboration among Head Start agencies and State and local entities as charged by the Office of Head Start in the following key priority areas:

School Transitions - Foster seamless transitions and long-term success of Head Start children by promoting continuity of services between the Head Start Child Development and Learning Framework and State early learning standards including pre-k entry assessment and interoperable data systems.
Professional Development - Collaborate with institutions of higher education to promote professional development through education and credentialing programs for early childhood providers in states.
Child Care and Early Childhood Systems - Coordinate activities with the agency responsible for the State Child Care and Development Block Grant, as well as resource and referral services, to make full-working-day and full--calendar --year services available to children. Include the Head Start Program Performance Standards in state efforts to rate the quality of programs using the (Quality Rating and Improvement System, (QRIS). Support Head Start program participation in QRIS and partnering with child care and early childhood systems at the local level.
Regional Office Priorities - Support priorities as stated in the Head Start Act and Regional Office priorities such as family and community partnerships and other special OHS and ACF initiatives, including:

  • Services to children experiencing homelessness
  • Services to children with disabilities
  • Health services, including health, mental health, oral health, nutrition and physical activity
  • Child welfare
  • Family literacy
  • Subsidy/TANF
  • Community services
  • Military families 

State and National Collaboration Offices involve the Connecticut Head Start Association, state agency state agency and entity partners and representatives of the broader early childhood, family support and professional development communities in planning and implementing collaborative activities and initiatives to address identified needs.

CTHSA Collaborations

Copyright 2013, 2017, 2018.

Connecticut Head Start Association, Inc.  

All Rights Reserved.

Contact Information: 

Jennifer Johnson, Director
Connecticut Office of Early Childhood
450 Columbus Blvd, Suit 304
Hartford, CT  06103

Telephone: (860) 500-4412

Connecticut Head Start State Collaboration Office



Section 642B of the Head Start Act authorizes the creation of State and National Collaboration offices “to facilitate collaboration among Head Start and Early Head Start agencies and the entities that carry out activities designed to benefit low income children from birth to school entry, and their families."

The Head Start State and National Collaboration Offices provide a structure and a process for the federal Office of Head Start to work with state and local entities on issues and policies that affect young children and their families.  Working together, they formulate, implement, improve and align state and local policies and practices. To be effective, the State and National Head Start Collaboration directors must ensure collaboration "is effective and involves a range of state agencies" to support the development of multi-agency and public and private partnerships at the state and national levels.