Head Start home visits - ProTeacher Community





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Head Start home visits
Old 08-02-2010, 12:25 PM
 
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Can anyone tell me more about home visits that are required by Head Start teachers? What happens? Do you go by yourself?


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Old 08-02-2010, 04:52 PM
 
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I'm not sure about head start but the program that I'm with we do home visits prior to the children starting. Both the teacher and the assistant go on the home visit, during the visit we answer any questions that the parents/guardian may have help them with any paper work they may need help with and then the remaining time is spent getting to know the child. I took a few file folder games and a book when I did them in student teaching. If the child participates, I really took the time to get to know them, their likes (favorite color, song what they are really interested in), then I told them that when they start school the game and book would be in their classroom. We then told the parents what day their child would begin school on since the school did staggered entrance and we gave them bus information if it applied. I hope this helps.
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Head Start Home Visits
Old 08-03-2010, 07:25 AM
 
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At my Head Start program we are required to make home visits in the first 45 days of the school year and then in the second half of the school year. I always go with my assistant or if she can't come then with my Family Service Worker. We just sit and talk with the family and see what concerns they may have and discuss how their child is doing in school and suggest things they can do at home together. Hope this helps.
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Old 08-03-2010, 11:17 AM
 
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At my Head Start Program we do an initial visit and then one at the end of the year. We also have two conferences at the school in fall and spring. We are required to have those 4 contacts with the parents. We have paperwork we have to fill out on those visits and also discuss how things are going with their child and their family. We do a goal sheet that has a goal they want for their child and a goal they want for their family and we discuss this at the first visit and each contact after that. We do our visits by ourselves unless we do not feel comfortable going without another person. I have been working at my agency for over 8 years and have had times where I did not feel safe to go into someone's house. I really see the need to make these contacts with the parent and how much stronger your relationship will be with a family because of this but in today's world I am not comfortable going into peoples houses that I do not know. I really think they need to rethink this part of the program for the safety of the teachers that work there.
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Old 08-04-2010, 03:10 AM
 
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Thank you for the information! I was recently hired so I don't have all the information yet, but this one part I was nervous about (for safety reasons).


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Old 08-04-2010, 07:49 AM
 
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Mila what state will you be working in?
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Old 08-14-2010, 06:57 AM
 
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I used to do Head Start - my school district dropped the HS program and I will be PreK this year - YEA!!!! I hated home visits... I totally understand and even agree with the idea and the reasoning behind them, but I agree with danalea and think they need to be re-worked -- not just for the safety and comfort of the teachers/aide/FSA but also for the safety and comfort of the parents. I know that part of the home visit is to actually see the living environment of the child... but if you watch the behavior and dress of the children and parents for just a few days, you can have a pretty good idea of what the living environment is like. I do advise that you NEVER go alone. It is not just physical safety -- if you are by yourself a parent could accuse you of doing or saying something (you said it was ok if he came late everyday or my grandmother's ring was on the coffee table before you arrived and was gone after you left) and you would have 0 proof that you didn't! Our parents are 95% Spanish speaking, so I had to have my aide or FSA with me, they did the interview and I sat there like a bump on a log! But at least I wasn't by myself!!
Here are the major problems with HVisits... or at least what I disliked about them...

1) I am highly asthmatic and my aide had severe animal allergies. When we walked into a home with pets or the home of a smoker, we were NOT focused on getting to know the family - we just wanted OUT of that house.I suggest taking allergy medicine before you go... just in case!

2) Many of our parents are here illegally. They are highly suspicious of anyone coming to their home. Some of them have lied about their home address on enrollment papers. Some are embarrassed of their homes. Some of their husbands or boyfriends do not want us (especially a white girl) in the house. Often we would go to a home visit only to find that this is not the child's home, but the home of a friend or legal relative... kind of defeats the purpose!

3) I have been in some beautiful pristine homes. I have also had to shoo the roach off the couch so I could sit down. I have been puked on by a sibling, almost bit by a dog, and sat in wet koolaide for half an hour. Although I try not to let it show, I promise you everytime I heard about Juan's dog, I did not have warm fuzzy feelings! Sometimes home visits set you up to dislike a child.... never a good thing to start the year feeling put off by a four year old, but your brain registers first impressions and it takes an awful lot to get your brain over that aversion hump!

Last year, with the support of our school principal and without the knowledge of HS, we conducted Home Visits at the school. We called parents and scheduled appointments. They came to the school cafeteria, we met them and whatever family they brought, they filled out the papers and went home. It was WONDERFUL!! We saved time and gas, we had only a couple of no shows (compared to around 8 -10 that would never be at their house when we showed up) we were able show parents things about the school instead of telling them, parents were happier and we felt safer and healthier! It was soooo nice. We had several younger siblings of previous HS students, and their parents all said they prefered the home visit at school to the home visit at the house... so it was a win win! good luck with your home visits and your comming year
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headstart homevisit safety
Old 08-29-2010, 04:52 PM
 
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Headstart visits are not necessary or safe anymore in today's society. The National Headstart Office needs to rethink this requirement.
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Home visits
Old 08-14-2013, 08:21 AM
 
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You should never go to anyone's home unannounced. Secondly, I had my son's kindergarten teacher stop by our home. We're in a small upper middle class suburb and it was nice to know that the teachers take the time. However I really didn't think it served any real purpose because the visit was right before dinner. It was somewhat awkward but in our situation the teacher lived in the neighborhood. It's been six years since that visit and we see the teacher regularly in the community (grocery store, Mall and banks). But I can see how going into someone's neighborhood you don't know feeling like a foreigner could make both parties uncomfortable.
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