Early Head Start is a comprehensive child development program that serves children from birth to age three. Early Head Start was launched in 1995 to provide comprehensive child and family development services for low income pregnant women and families with infants and toddlers age birth to three years.
Head Start programs promote school readiness by enhancing the social and cognitive development of children through the provision of educational, health, nutritional, social and other services to enrolled children and families. They engage parents in their children's learning and help them make progress toward their education, literacy and employment goals.
In 2003, the Arkansas Legislature made a commitment to expand early childhood education funding by $100 million to serve low income three and four year old children in areas at high risk for academic failure with high quality pre-k services. This expansion, known as Arkansas Better Chance for School Success, has become the state pre-kindergarten program.