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Rep. Courtney Announces More Than $5 Million in Federal Head Start Funding Bound for Eastern Connecticut

February 13, 2020
Press Release

WASHINGTON, DC – Congressman Joe Courtney (CT-02) today announced that the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has awarded $5,169,707 in federal funding to the Eastern Connecticut Regional Education Service Center (EASTCONN) to support Head Start and Early Head Start programming in eastern Connecticut. The funds were dispersed through the HHS Administration for Children and Families, Office of Head Start.

“With over five million dollars in federal funding to support Head Start projects in our region, this is an investment in our children, our families, and our future,” said Congressman Courtney. “Kim Mansfield and her team at EASTCONN do great work in administering Head Start programming, and these new federal resources will enable them to continue their service to our region. I was proud to vote for such a substantial plus-up to the Head Start budget in last year’s omnibus spending package, and now that we’re underway with this year’s budget negation process I’ll continue to work to protect and grow this important program.”

“EASTCONN is grateful for the opportunity to continue serving the hundreds of children and families in northeastern Connecticut who benefit from this important, federally funded Head Start program,” said EASTCONN Director of Head Start Kim Mansfield. “Thanks to Head Start funding, we are able to partner with local communities, early childhood providers and health care specialists to support the needs of all our families and their young children. Our ability to provide consistent, quality Head Start programs throughout northeastern Connecticut has been strengthened by the support of Congressman Joe Courtney’s office.” 

This year’s federal Head Start grant award was made after Congress voted in December 2019 to pass the final negotiated spending package to fund the government for Fiscal Year (FY) 2020. Rep. Courtney voted in favor of the FY 2020 spending package, which contained substantial funding increases for crucial childhood education programs, including $10.6 billion for Head Start and Early Head Start – a $550 million increase from FY 2019 funding levels.

EASTCONN is one of Connecticut’s six, public, non-profit Regional Education Service Centers. The organization was formed in 1980 when two smaller eastern Connecticut public service agencies merged in order to more effectively provide affordable education programs and services to the region’s smaller and, often, less affluent schools and communities. EASTCONN provides a range of programming and services, including K-12 professional learning, special education, adult education and early childhood. Click here to learn more.

Head Start is a federal program that provides comprehensive services to enrolled children and their families, which include health, nutrition, social services and other services determined to be necessary by family needs assessments, in addition to education and cognitive development services.

The Head Start program was founded as part of Lyndon B. Johnson’s War on Poverty in 1965 as an eight-week demonstration project. Since its founding, Head Start has served over 30 million children and their families in urban and rural areas in every corner of the nation, and has grown to include full day as well as year services and numerous program options.