Early Head Start: Identifying and Serving Children with Disabilities

Carla A. Peterson, Shavaun Wall, Helen A. Raikes, Ellen E. Kisker, Mark E. Swanson, Judith Jerald, Jane B. Atwater, Wei Qiao

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

38 Scopus citations


Early Head Start (EHS) is a comprehensive, two-generation program that provides services to low-income families with children under the age of 3 years. As part of their mandate, staff members of EHS programs collaborate with other service providers in their local communities, including Part C and childcare providers. The incidence of disabilities among low-income children was tracked as part of the EHS Research and Evaluation Project. The incidence of indicators of disabilities (or potential disabilities) was extremely high (87%) among these very young children living in poverty; however, only 99 participating families (4.7% of the sample) received Part C services. Receipt of Part C services was related negatively to specific family characteristics (e.g., mother less well educated, being of color, not speaking English). Participation in EHS had a positive impact on receipt of Part C services.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)76-88
Number of pages13
JournalTopics in Early Childhood Special education
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 2004
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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