ERSEA BOARD TRAINING
Enrollment, Recruitment, Selection, Eligibility and Attendance
|Options for enrollment||In Person or Telephone interview - Program staff must conduct an in-person interview with each family, unless an in-person interview is not possible. A telephone interview may then be conducted, however, in addition to the interview, staff must note in the eligibility determination record reasons why the in-person interview was not possible.|
|Age Eligibility requirements||Head Start - a child
must be at least three years old; or, turn three years old by the
date used to determine eligibility for public school in the
community in which the Head Start program is located; and, not be
older than compulsory school age.
Early Head Start - Except when the child is transitioning to Head Start, a child must be an infant or a toddler younger than three years old.
|Categorical eligibility||Families receiving
TANF (Temporary Assistance for Needy Families) or SSI (Supplemental
A child is homeless.
The child is in foster care.
|Categorical eligibility verification||A family can prove
categorical eligibility, with:
a) A court order or other legal or government issued document from a government child welfare official demonstrating the child is in foster care;
b) A written statement from a homeless services provider, school personnel, or other service agency attesting that the child is homeless or any other documentation from a public or private agency, a declaration, information gathered on enrollment or application forms, or notes from an interview with staff to establish the child is homeless, as defined in 1305.2 or;
c) Any other document that establishes categorical eligibility.
If a family can provide one of the documents above, program staff must:
a) Describe efforts made to verify the accuracy of the information provided; and;
b) State whether the family is categorically eligible.
If a family cannot provide one of the documents described above to prove the child is homeless, a program may accept the family's signed declaration to that effect, if, in a written statement, program staff:
a) Describes the efforts made to verify that a family is homeless, and,
b) Describes the child's living situation, including the specific condition described in 1305.2 under which the child was determined to be homeless.
Program staff may seek information from third parties who have first-hand knowledge about a family's categorical eligibility, if the family gives consent. If the family gives consent to contact third parties, program staff must adhere to program safety and privacy policies and procedures and ensure the eligibility determination record adheres to this section.
|Income eligible||Family's income is
equal or below the federal poverty guideline.
A program may enroll a family whose income is above the poverty line who would
|Verifying income||If the family can
provide all W-2 forms, pay stubs, or pay envelopes for the relevant
time period, program staff must:
a) Use all family income for the relevant time period to determine eligibility according to income guidelines;
b) State the family income for the relevant time period, and;
c) State whether the pregnant woman or child qualifies as low-income.
If the family cannot provide all W-2 forms, pay stubs or pay envelopes for the relevant time period, program staff may accept written statements from employers for the relevant time period and use information provided to calculate total annual income with appropriate multipliers.
If the family reports no income for the relevant time period, a program may:
a) Accept the family's signed declaration to that effect, if program staff:
b) Describes efforts made to veryify the family's income; and,
c) Explains how the family's total income was calculated; or,
d) Seeks information from third parties about the family's eligibility, if the family gives written consent. If a family gives consent to contact third parties, program staff must adhere to program safety and privacy policies and procedures and ensure the eligibility determination record adheres to (i)(2((ii)© in this section
If a child moves from an Early Head start program to a Head Start program, program staff must verify the family's income again.
If the family can demonstrate a significant change in income for the relevant time period, program may consider current income circumstances.
|Individual Determination Records||A program must keep
eligibility determination records for each participant and on-going
training records for program staffs. A program may keep these
Each eligibility determination record must include:
a) Copies of any documents or statements, including declarations, that are deemed necessary to verify eligibility
b) A statement that program staff has made reasonable efforts to verify information by:
1) Conducting either an in-person, or telephonic
interview with the family as described under
paragraph (a) of this section;
2) Describing efforts made to verify eligibility; and,
3) Collecting documents required for third party
verification that includes:
a) The family's written consent to contact each
b) The third parties names, titles, and affiliations;
c) Information from third parties regarding the
A statement that identifies whether:
a) The family's income is below income guidlines for its size, and lists the family's size;
b) The family is eligible for or, in the absence of child care, potentially eligible for public assistance; (This may only be done if the program can ensure that their determination is acccurate. Ensuring an accurate determination requires using state or local TANF or SSI eligibility requirements, including those around income, assets, participation requirements and lifetime limits.)
c) The child is homeless as defined in 1305.23 including the specific condition described under which the child was determined to be homeless;
d) The child is in foster care;
e) The family meets the over-income requirement
A program must keep eligibility determination records:
a) For those currently enrolled, as long as they are enrolled; and,
b) For one year after they have either stopped receiving services; or,
c) Are no longer enrolled.
|Policies||A program must
establish policies and procedures that describe all actions taken
against staff who intentionally violate federal and program
eligibility determination regulations and who enroll pregnant women
and children that are not eligible to receive Head Start/Early Head
A program must develop policies on how often training will be provided after the initial training.
|Training||A program must train
all governing body, policy council, management, and staff who
determine eligibility on applicable federal regulations and program
policies and procedures. Training must, at a minimum:
a) Include methods on how to collect complete and accurate eligibility information from families and third party sources;
b) Incorporate strategies for treating families with dignity and respect and for dealing with possible issues of domestic violence, stigma and privacy; and,
c) Explain program policies and procedures that describe actions taken against staff, families, or participants who intentionally attempt to provide or provide false information.
A program must train management and staff members who make eligibility determinations within 90 days following the effective date of this rule, and as soon as possible, but within 90 days of hiring new staff after the initial training.
A program must train all governing body and policy council members within 180 days following the effective date of this rule, and within 180 days of the beginning of the term of a new governing body or policy council member after the initial training has been conducted.