The Rappahannock County School Board unanimously approved a Memo of Understanding (MOU) with the Child Care and Learning Center (CCLC) at its regular meeting Tuesday night (Sept. 11).
The agreement — made possible by a supplemental appropriation approved last week by the board of supervisors — enables CCLC to provide alternative Head Start services for 17 preschool children and their families during the school year.
The district is calling the program “First Step,” and the memo includes the stipulation that CCLC seek alternative funding for future years — most likely from People Inc., the county’s designated community action organization, which funds Head Start-like programs in other Virginia jurisdictions.
The school district was notified just before the school year began that the county had lost its funding for its Head Start Program, federal monies for which have been reduced nationwide. The program provides health, nutrition and social and family services to income-eligible children 3 to 5 years old.
Superintendent Shannon Grimsley told the board that since the district identified the 17 eligible 3- and 4-year-olds last month, an additional five eligible children had been identified.
“This is an awesome thing the board of supervisors did for us,” said school board chair Wesley Mills.