Preparing Children for Success in School and in Life

The Y's Baltimore County Head Start program has been designated a National Center of Excellence by the Department of Health and Human Services -- one of only a few so designated in the country. All Baltimore County Head Start centers are accredited and licensed by the Maryland State Department of Education (MSDE).

Throughout Baltimore County, we provide a Head Start program for preschool children ages 3 – 5 and an Early Head Start program for pregnant women, infants and toddlers ages 0 – 3. Our goal is to ensure that every child is school-ready. In fact, Baltimore County Head Start children routinely assess higher in school readiness than other assessed children across the state.

We welcome all children, including those with disabilities and those who are in foster care or are experiencing homelessness. We work with families and local communities to strengthen the family unit through comprehensive services:

  • Trained, knowledgeable and helpful staff
  • FREE comprehensive services around education, health, nutrition, mental health, and family services
  • Family support and developmentally appropriate learning activities
  • Referral services for resources such as: WIC, Infants & Toddlers, Health Care Providers, Food Pantry, Employment, and Housing
  • Individual Child Progress Reports on what your child knows and can do
  • Parenting workshops, trainings, and field trips
  • Volunteer opportunities
  • Complimentary Y family membership while families are enrolled in the program
  • Parent leadership opportunities on Advisory Committees, Policy Council, and the Maryland Head Start Board
  • Transportation (available within a limited area)

 Get a better idea of our impact and performance by viewing our 2020 Community Report.


Early Head Start

Program Details

Y Early Head Start is a home-based or center-based program for pregnant women, infants and toddlers from birth to age 3 that helps to prepare children in all developmental areas for transition into traditional Head Start. 

  • Pregnant women, infants and toddlers from birth to age 3
  • Monday-Friday
  • Full-day, 8:30am - 3pm
  • Year-round program options:
    1. Home-based program for pregnant women and children up to age 3. Family Development Specialists work with families in their home on a weekly basis.
    2. Center-based program for children up to age 3
  • Prenatal education and support for expectant families
  • Home visits by trained staff to support you in your role as the primary educator of your child

Curriculum

Early Head Start uses the Creative Curriculum for Infants and Toddlers. The philosophy behind this curriculum is that in the early years, children explore the world around them by using all of their senses. Through use of this curriculum, we aim to:

  • Help children become enthusiastic learners
  • Allow children to learn at their own pace and in ways that are best for them
  • Instill a positive sense of self that will make a difference throughout their lives
  • Focus on the full development of the whole child: spirit, mind & body
  • Social Development – helping children feel comfortable, to trust their environment
  • Emotional Development – build self-confidence
  • Physical Development – help children increase their large and small motor skills
  • Cognitive Development – help children become confident learners by letting them tryout their own ideas and experience success


Traditional Head Start

Program Details

Y Head Start serves children ages 3-5 with an intentional focus to develop school readiness skills. Children are prepared to enter kindergarten ready to learn.

  • Children ages 3-5
  • Monday-Thursday
  • Part-day program: 8:30am – 12:00pm or 12:00pm – 3:30pm
  • Full-day program: 8:30am-3pm at select locations
  • September - June
  • Daily meals (breakfast, lunch & snack)
  • Transportation is available to Head Start children within a limited area for each location, but is not guaranteed
  • Curriculum-based program focused on school readiness: literacy, math, science & social-emotional skills

Curriculum

Y Head Start uses the Core Knowledge Preschool Sequence Curriculum which teaches skills related to school readiness as recommended and measured by MSDE. Through skills-based learning, we involve the family as active partners in their child’s healthy growth and development, and we prepare children to be successful by instilling age-appropriate fundamentals:

  • Reading - letter sounds, word families, reading/being read to, book awareness, etc.
  • Writing - letter shapes, spacing, upper and lowercase, punctuation, etc.
  • Math - numbers, counting, grouping, addition, subtraction, math facts, etc.
  • Circle/Small Group Time - name recognition, calendar, dramatic play, educational songs, science, library, etc.
  • Health & Wellness - I Am Moving, I Am Learning; a preschool curriculum that teaches and reinforces academic skills through music and movement, daily outdoor play, swimming (where available), physical education and more; generously funded by Giant Food's Our Family Foundation
  • Arts & Humanities - replicating the work of the masters, finger painting, crafts, etc.

 


How to Enroll Your Child

Head Start is a fully funded program. Families must apply for their child’s scholarship to participate. 

TO GET STARTED: 

Review the list of locations below to see if we serve your area. Complete the pre-registration application to determine eligibility for the program. If your child is eligible, a member of our team will contact you with additional information and to complete the registration process.

Pre-Registration Application


You may also email us at charissegibbs@ymaryland.org. The Family Service Advocate or Family Development Specialist will explain the enrollment process and arrange a time to speak with you to complete the application.

Please be prepared with the following documents:

  • Proof of age (birth certificate or legal document for child 0-5, proof of pregnancy)
  • Proof of Residency (current lease, phone bill, BGE, etc.)
  • Proof of Income (W2, tax form 1040, 2 current consecutive check stubs, SSI, child support, etc.)

Children are enrolled based on a selection system that ranks families by need. Upon enrollment you must provide:

  • A record of your child’s immunizations
  • Documentation of your child’s most recent physical and lead test/level
  • Other supporting documents as requested

 

Note: Some centers offer wrap-around care for families who are attending school, working or participating in job training. This is a fee-based service. We accept Purchase of Care (POC) vouchers.

 

Locations

Y EARLY HEAD START services are available at the following locations:

Home-based Early Head Start services are available throughout the County.
HIGHLAND VILLAGE EARLY HEAD START
Center-based
4165 McDowell Ln.
Baltimore, MD 21227
Serving all county zip codes
KENWOOD EARLY HEAD START
Center-based
4601 Fullerton Ave.
Baltimore, MD 21236
Serving all county zip codes
MERRITT PARK II EARLY HEAD START
1782 Merritt Blvd.
Baltimore, MD 21117
Serving Zip Codes: 21222, 21219, 21224 (county)
 


Y HEAD START services are available at the following locations:

BACK RIVER HEAD START
799 Back River Neck Rd.
Essex, MD 21221
Serving Zip Codes: 21220, 21221
CAMPFIELD HEAD START
6838 Alter Rd.
Baltimore, MD 21207
Serving Zip Codes: 21244, 21208, 21207 (county), 21133, 21215 (county)
EASTERN FAMILY RESOURCE CENTER
9150 Franklin Square Dr.
Rosedale, MD 21237

EMILY HARRIS HEAD START
27 Main St.
Catonsville, MD 21228
Serving Zip Codes: 21244, 21228, 21133, 21207 (county)

FLEMING HEAD START
641 Main St.
Dundalk, MD 21222
Serving Zip Code: 21222
HIGHLAND VILLAGE HEAD START
4165 McDowell Ln.
Baltimore, MD 21227
Serving Zip Code: 21227
KENWOOD HEAD START
4601 Fullerton Ave.
Baltimore, MD 21236
Serving Zip Codes: 21237, 21220,
21236, 21206 (county)
MERRITT PARK HEAD START I
1782 Merritt Blvd.
Baltimore, MD 21117
Serving Zip Codes: 21222, 21219, 21224 (county)
MERRITT PARK HEAD START II
1782 Merritt Blvd. #F
Baltimore, MD 21117
Serving Zip Codes: 21222, 21219, 21224 (county)
RANDALLSTOWN HEAD START
5115 Old Court Rd.
Randallstown, MD 21133
Serving Zip Codes: 21133, 21117, 21208
RIVERVIEW HEAD START
3290 Kessler Rd.
Lansdowne, MD 21227
Serving Zip Code: 21227
TOWSON HEAD START
1801 Glen Keith Blvd.
Baltimore, MD 21234
Serving Zip Codes: 21286, 21239, 21234, 21204

Baltimore County Head Start Administrative Office
4375 Ebenezer Rd., Perry Hall, MD 21236
410-248-0372
Monday - Friday
8:30am - 5pm

PUBLIC RELEASE: The Y in Central Maryland announces participation in the MDSE Child and Adult Care Food Program.