In July, 2014, Federal Programs was renamed Foundational Learning and Family Engagement. Our new department name and logo reflect the comprehensive services we provide, rather than the associated funding. Because we serve the same students and the same schools, the department’s mission aligns closely with those of the HCPS departments of Elementary Education and Exceptional Education. Our three main areas of focus (described below) are 1) providing foundational preschool experiences to our youngest and most vulnerable population, 2) providing foundational learning in reading and math in our most challenged schools, and 3) facilitating the engagement of all families in their children’s education.
Federal Programs Preschool – braided funding from the federal Head Start and Title I 4-year-old programs; the Virginia Preschool Initiative; and the Virginia Preschool Initiative Plus program.
The overall goal of HCPS Federal Programs Preschool is to provide students the opportunity to learn by helping them discover answers through hands-on learning activities that stimulate their curiosity and creativity. The preschool program curriculum strives to increase language development, motor and thinking skills and social interactions through cooperative learning activities. The curriculum also focuses on social, emotional and physical development. Currently, there are 44 preschool classrooms in 22 buildings in Henrico County. Students attend preschool five days a week for 6.25 hours a day. Breakfast, lunch and a snack are provided to students participating in the preschool programs. The funding for Federal Programs Preschool is provided by grants (from the federal Head Start and Title I 4-year-old programs; the Virginia Preschool Initiative; and the Virginia Preschool Initiative Plus program), braided to create one consistent program at all schools.
The following elementary schools currently have preschool programs:
New Bridge Learning Center (Website)
Gail Jones, Director 804-328-8100
The federal Title I program provides assistance to students most in need of instructional support in challenged schools and focuses on closing the achievement gap. Instructional resources and research-based training enable schools to develop high-quality enriched programs to meet the diverse needs of all children, families and staff. Title I maintains a staff at each school which includes at least a Title I reading teacher. Additional staff members, including Title I math teachers, may also provide support, depending on the needs of the school. As part of a divisionwide initiative, Title I math and reading teachers focus on coaching to improve instruction in all classrooms in the school. In an effort to close the achievement gap, Title I provides additional supports such as lower class sizes, small-group remediation and supplemental programming.
Mary Beth Libby, Title I Specialist 804-328-8102
The Family Engagement mission, carried out by HCPS family advocates, is to empower families by successfully bridging gaps and building connections among families, schools and communities. These connections give families the chance to become more actively involved with their child’s education; to volunteer in the schools; to attend workshops and events; and to serve on school and family committees.
Debora Ringgold, Family Engagement Coordinator 804-328-8123
Title I schools and contact information for family advocates: