Earlier this year, a suit was filed in the United States District Court for the District of Columbia seeking to require the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to make major changes in the Designation Renewal System (DRS). Today, the court ruled in favor of HHS and issued an opinion upholding DRS in its entirety.
The following statement should be attributed to Yasmina Vinci, Executive Director of the National Head Start Association:
“The National Head Start Association (NHSA), and by extension, the Head Start and Early Head Start community we represent, continue to embrace excellence, quality and accountability in all aspects of Head Start and Early Head Start programs. Though NHSA was not a party to the suit, we will continue working with the Office of Head Start (OHS) as DRS moves forward to ensure that Head Start children and families in transitioning programs experience no disruption in their services."
"Throughout the implementation of DRS, NHSA has worked tirelessly to advocate with OHS and the Administration to make this a fair and open process. We believe that significant changes were made: clarification of important aspects of the re-competition application process as well as lengthening the transition period for new grantees. Each was the result of the Administration listening to the input from the field collected by NHSA and our members."
"We look forward to utilizing the experience and wisdom of the entire Head Start community as we work together with the Administration, specifically OHS, to ensure that the DRS effectively improves outcomes for Head Start children and families as Congress intended.”