February 24, 2020

Duckworth, Durbin Announce Over $7 Million in Grants to Head Start Programs in Central Illinois


[WASHINGTON, D.C.] — U.S. Senators Tammy Duckworth (D-IL) and Dick Durbin (D-IL) announced $7,300,621 in federal funding to Champaign County. The funding will support access to Head Start and Early Head Start programs in the region. It comes through the Administration for Children and Families (ACF), a division of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) that provides technical assistance and helps build strategic partnerships in order to promote the social and economic well-being of children and families. 

“Investments in early childhood education and parental support programs are critical to ensure all children can access their full potential,” said Duckworth. “Programs like Head Start and Early Head Start give kids throughout Illinois the tools they need to succeed both inside and outside of the classroom and I’m proud to continue supporting this program.”

“This federal funding helps ensure that children in Champaign have the strong foundation they need to flourish throughout preschool, elementary school, and beyond,” Durbin said. “Head Start and Early Head Start programs are sources of countless success stories in our state and remain crucial for the healthy development of young children.”

Head Start and Early Head Start programs focus on education, nutrition, socio-emotional development and physical and mental health for children from birth to age five. In today’s federal funding announcement, $1,883,718 will be allocated for Early Head Start programs, and $5,416,903 will be allocated for Head Start programs.

Since arriving in Congress, Duckworth has been a strong advocate for women and families. Last May, she wrote an op-ed advocating for the fair pay of preschool educators and stressing the importance of high-quality early education, while highlighting her own experience with a teacher who made a difference in her life.