Durham Head Start & Early Head Start

Since 1965, Head Start has served millions of children and families across the United States. There are approximately 2,000 Head Start and Early Head Start grantee agencies providing an array of child and family development services. CHTOP operates three such programs in Durham and Orange Counties.

Originally, Head Start was for children age three and four. In the 1990s, the Early Head Start Program was initiated for children from birth to age three. Many Head Start programs are providing a continuum of Head Start services to the full age range from birth to kindergarten, giving many children and their families several years of growth and development in the program.

Even though the Durham Head Start & Early Head Start program has a waiting list, we encourage you to apply if you feel that you are eligible. Families with the greatest need are selected for enrollment each year.

Who is Eligible?
  • Families living in Durham County who meet income eligibility as determined by Federal Poverty Guidelines. See table below.
  • Children with documented disabilities may be eligible regardless of income.
  • Foster children and children from families receiving public assistance (TANF or SSI) regardless of income.
  • To meet the enrollment criteria for the Durham Head Start program, families must meet the poverty guidelines that are established by the United Starts Department of Health and Human Services.
  • At time of application, families must present documentation to demonstrate that they are living at or below the guidelines listed below.

2019 Head Start Family Income Eligibility Guidelines (130% of the Federal guidelines for poverty):

Family Size Annual Family Income
2 $21,983
3 $27,729
4 $33,475
5 $39,221
6 $44,967
7 $50,713
8 $56,459
For each additional family member add: $4,420


How Can I Apply?

If you wish to apply, please fill out the digital application (below) and submit it today. Remember, there is a waiting list of many other families who want to enroll their children so good luck.

Applications are available in English and Spanish: 

Click here for English.  For assistance in English, call (984) 464-1502.

Click here for Spanish.  For assistance in Spanish, call (984) 208-5295.

In addition to submitting the application above, you may be asked to provide the following information later.

  1. Proof of income or school for both legal guardians, if in the home (Examples are: Pay stubs for 1 month, most recent W-2 or 1040 Tax form, SSI or TANF documentation, Letter from Employer, Letter from School, School schedule, or a notarized Statement of No Income).
  2. Proof of child’s age – something official with your child’s birth date on it (Birth Certificate or Passport, Medicaid Card, etc.).
  3. Proof of Durham County Residency – a lease or bill or ID that show you live in Durham County.
  4. Special Services Paperwork – if your child receives any special services, documentation about that (sometimes called an IFSP).
Durham Early Head Start Locations

Christian Prep

1405 NC-54 Durham, NC 27713

(919) 416-1726 | MAP

Leathers Meachem

908 Liberty Street Durham, NC 27701

(919) 536-5560 | MAP

Seminary DHS/EHS

215 West Seminary Avenue Durham, NC 27701

(919) 688-5541 | MAP

Durham Head Start Locations

Durham Head Start @ RTP

4900 Prosepctus Drive, Ste. 300 Durham, NC 27713

(919) 973-2016 | MAP

Leathers Meachem DHS/EHS

908 Liberty Street Durham, NC 27701

(919) 536-5560 | MAP

Lyon Park HS

1309 Halley Street Durham, NC 27707

(919) 980-1003 | MAP

McDougald Terrace

1101 E. Lawson Street Durham, NC 27701

(919) 598-1910 | MAP

Oxford Manor

3633 Keystone Place Durham, NC 27704

(919) 220-5605 | MAP

Seminary DHS/EHS

215 West Seminary Avenue Durham, NC 27701

(919) 688-5541 | MAP

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