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Maine Department of Health and Human Services
Programs and Services of the Department of Health and Human Services:
Child and Family Services
Phone: (207) 624-7900
Fax: (207) 287-5282
TTY: (800) 6-6-0215
The Office of Child and Family Services (OCFS) serves Maine's children and their families through the Divisions of Child Welfare, Children's Behavioral Health, Early Childhood, and Public Service Management. Visit our Programs and Services for a complete listing of services provided by OCFS.
Maine communities are the essential link for these children. Skilled foster families and other professional resources from Eliot to Fort Kent offer their patience and care.
Programs and Services:
EARLY CHILDHOOD DIVISION
A program under Child and Family Services
Phone: (207) 624-7992
The Early Childhood Division is responsible for Child Care and Head Start Programs, coordination of child care licensing, technical assistance, training and employer incentives. The Office of Child Care and Head Start is responsible for the development and improvement of child care resources across the state. It administers, evaluates and directs the expenditures of state and federal dollars for the provision of child care. The office manages grants, develops and manages programs to improve the quality of child care and provides technical assistance
concerning child care.
Child and Family Services
Phone: (207) 624-7909
Fax: (207) 287-6156
A source of information for parents, child care providers, early childhood educators, and others interested in the health and development of young children and their families.
Information for Parents:
Early Care & Education
Phone: (207) 287-5099
Head Start in Maine – Head Start Brochure
Head Start is a national program that promotes school readiness by enhancing the social and cognitive development of children through the provision of educational, health, nutritional, social and other services to enrolled children and families. Head Start is a comprehensive early childhood development program for children, ages 3-5, whose family income is at or below the poverty level or who have a disability. Comprehensive services include education, health, nutrition, and social skills. Traditionally Head Start is a part-day, part-year program, operating for 3 1/2 hours to 6 hours per day for 32 weeks a year. Most Head Start programs throughout Maine now offer "wrap around services" which combines Head Start services with child care services to offer full-day, full-year programs to families. Through Home Start, Head Start programming is offered at family child care homes.
Early Head Start is a family focused program for children ages 0-3 with the same eligibility requirements as Head Start.
Maine offers Early Head Start services in centers and family child care homes, as well as through Home-based programming. The Maine Head Start Collaboration Project is also housed at the Office of Child Care and Head Start. Despite the federal-to-local funding of Head Start programs, the federal government recognizes that the states play an important role in the formulation and implementation of policies and initiatives that affect low-income children and their families. Maine received one of the first Head Start Collaboration Grants from the Head Start Bureau at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services in 1990. Head Start personnel come to the child's home to meet with the family. Maine Head Start collaborates with public schools to provide preschool programs