The Early Head Start program provides early, continuous, intensive, and comprehensive child development and family support services to low-income infants and toddlers under the age of 3, and pregnant women and families. 


  • The goals of the Early Start Program are to provide safe and developmentally enriching caregiving which promotes the physical, cognitive, social and emotional development of infants and toddlers, and prepares them for future growth and development;

  • To support parents, both mothers and fathers, in their role as primary caregivers and teachers of their children, and families in meeting personal goals and achieving self sufficiency across a wide variety of domains;

  • To mobilize communities to provide the resources and environment necessary to ensure a comprehensive, integrated array of services and support for families;

  • To ensure the provision of high quality responsive services to family through the development of trained, and caring staff. 

The principles of Early Head Start are designed to nurture healthy attachments between parent and child (caregiver and child) with a strengths-based, relationship-centered approach to services which cover a wide range of family's needs from pregnancy to the child's third birthday. 


The Principles of Early Head Start include:


An emphasis on high quality programs that recognize the critical opportunity the program has to positively impact children and families in the early years and beyond.


Prevention and promotion of activities that not only promote healthy development, but also recognize and address atypical development as early as possible. 


Positive relationships and continuity which honor the importance of early attachments on healthy development in the early years and beyond.  Parents are recognized as their child's first, and most important, relationship. 


Parent Involvement is not only welcomed, but encouraged.  The program offers parents a meaningful and strategic role in the program's vision, services, and governance.


Inclusion strategies that respect the unique and individual developmental paths of young children, including children with disabilities. 


Cultural Competence which acknowledges the important role that culture plays in a child's early development and also the influence that cultural values and beliefs have on both staff and families' approach to child development.  


Comprehensiveness, Flexibility, and Responsiveness of services allow children and families to move across various program options over time, as their life situation demands. 


Transitions Planning respects families' needs for support with movements across program options and into-and out of-Early Head Start programs. 


Collaboration is the key to an Early Head Start program's ability to meet the comprehensive needs of families.  Strong partnerships allow programs to expand their services to families with infants and toddlers beyond the door of the program and into the larger community.

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Family Educator Staff


 Lisa Benninger in Cobleskill - lisab@sccdcny

Jessica Weiler in Sharon Springs - jessicaw@sccdcny






Homebase will be holding a large homebase event inviting all homebase families 4 times a year.  

These will be held in Feb, April, August and October.