A Year in Region XI Head Start: Children's Growth and Development from the American Indian and Alaska Native Family and Child Experiences Survey 2015 (AI/AN FACES 2015)

OPRE Report #2018-72
Publisher: Washington, DC: Office of Planning, Research, and Evaluation, Administration for Children and Families, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
Nov 05, 2018
Sara Bernstein, Lizabeth Malone, and the AI/AN FACES 2015 Workgroup

Key Findings:

  • Children make gains in language, literacy, and math skills across the program year, although they score lower than other children of the same age nationally.
  • Children show growth in their social skills, exhibit more positive approaches to learning, and have stronger executive function skills across the program year.
  • At the end of the Head Start year, the majority of Region XI children are in excellent or very good health, and most children are normal weight – but 40 percent of children are overweight or obese.

It is important for Head Start to have information about children’s and families’ strengths and needs over the course of the program year. We examine Region XI Head Start children’s growth in cognitive skills (in language, literacy, and mathematics), social-emotional skills, and executive function during the program year to learn about their progress toward being ready for school. We also consider children’s physical health at the end of the program year, as it can influence children’s readiness for school.

This research brief describes the developmental progress of Region XI Head Start children as they complete a program year (from fall 2015 to spring 2016), using recent data from the American Indian and Alaska Native Head Start Family and Child Experiences Survey (AI/AN FACES 2015).