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Head Start set to run rent-free

August 16, 2000

Head Start set to run rent-free



By TARA REILLY / Staff Writer


Resources for Children and Families would not pay rent to use space in seven Washington County schools for the Head Start program under a draft agreement presented to School Board members Tuesday.

The agreement would be valid for the 2000-2001 school year, according to School Board administrators.

Head Start, which is being run by Resources for Children and Families this year, is open to 3- and 4-year-old children of low-income families. About 369 students will be served.

About 119 of those children will be headed to Emma K. Doub, Hancock, Hickory, Williamsport, Lincolnshire, Bester and Fountaindale elementary schools. The School Board approved those sites at Tuesday night's business meeting.

Sessions in Hancock, Bester, Emma K. Doub and Fountaindale elementary schools will be held in the afternoon, while sessions at Williamsport, Lincolnshire and Hickory elementary schools would be held in the morning.

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All classes will be taught by teachers employed by Resources for Children and Families, not those working for the Washington County Board of Education.

Classes for the additional 250 children will be held at Martin Luther King Center, Noland Village and the Pleasant Valley Baptist Church.

In lieu of rent, Resources for Children and Families would have to share classroom equipment purchased with federal money with certain pre-kindergarten and kindergarten classrooms, under the draft agreement.

That equipment includes computers, televisions, VCRs and any other items appropriate for classroom instruction.

John Festerman, director of elementary education, said both sides would continue to negotiate the rent issue and other conditions, which include transportation, insurance liability, student behavior problems and food service.

For the 2001-2002 school year, Resources for Children and Families could have to start the search for space all over again. The School Board plans to implement all-day kindergarten by then, leaving no room for Head Start.

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