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Title I, Part A Preschool Programs

Title I, Part A funds may be used for early childhood education.

According to the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) reauthorized as the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) Section 1113[c][5], local educational agencies (LEAs) may reserve funds to provide early childhood education programs for eligible children. LEAs are not required to reserve Title I, Part A funds for preschool programs.

Requirements

A LEA that chooses to use Title I, Part A funds to provide early childhood education services to low-income children below the age of compulsory school attendance, shall ensure that such services comply with the performance standards of the Head Start Act (42 U.S.C. 9836a[a]) pursuant to ESSA Section 1112[c][7].

If targeted assistance schools (TAS) decide to use Title I, Part A funds for preschool services, the program shall coordinate with and support the regular education program, which may include services to assist school children in the transition from early childhood education programs such as Head Start, the literacy program under subpart 2 of part B of Title II, or State-run preschool programs to elementary school programs (ESSA Section 1115[b][2][C]).

A preschool that operates a schoolwide program (SWP) may use funds available to establish or enhance preschool programs for children who are under 6 years of age (ESSA Section 1114[c]). If a SWP school decides to use Title I, Part A funds for preschool services, the SWP plan shall include a description of the strategies for assisting preschool children in the transition from early childhood education programs to local elementary school programs (ESSA Section 1114[b][7][A][V]).

In general, each LEA reserving Title I, Part A funds to support preschool services shall carryout activities with Head Start agencies and, if feasible, other entities carrying out early childhood development programs. Each LEA shall develop agreements with such Head Start agencies and other entities to carry out such activities (ESSA Section 1119[a]).

Additionally, such services are activities that increase coordination between the LEA and a Head Start agency and, if feasible, other entities carrying out early childhood education programs serving children who will attend the schools of the LEA, including—

(1) developing and implementing a systematic procedure for receiving records regarding such children, transferred with parental consent from a Head Start program or, where applicable, another early childhood education program;

(2) establishing channels of communication between school staff and their counterparts (including teachers, social workers, and health staff) in such Head Start agencies or other entities carrying out early childhood education programs, as appropriate, to facilitate coordination of programs;

(3) conducting meetings involving parents, kindergarten or elementary school teachers, and Head Start teachers or, if appropriate, teachers from other early childhood education programs, to discuss the developmental and other needs of individual children;

(4) organizing and participating in joint transition-related training of school staff, Head Start program staff, and, where appropriate, other early childhood education program staff; and

(5) linking the educational services provided by such LEA with the services provided by local Head Start agencies (ESSA Section 1119[b]).

Resources

Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) External link opens in new window or tab.

Early Learning Resources External link opens in new window or tab.
U.S. Department of Education resources related to early childhood education.

Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) External link opens in new window or tab.

Non-Regulatory Guidance – Early Learning in the Every Student Succeeds Act: Expanding Opportunities to Support Our Youngest Learners (October 2016) External link opens in new window or tab. (PDF)

Non-Regulatory Guidance – Serving Preschool Children Through Title I (October 2012) External link opens in new window or tab. (PDF)

Resources for Parents and Families
Information for parents and family members about early childhood education.

Questions:   Patricia Ramirez | TITLEI@cde.ca.gov | 916-319-0917
Last Reviewed: Wednesday, August 21, 2019
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