Not only are preschoolers getting a head start, so are juniors studying early childhood education.
Star Vaughn studies child education at the Lorain County JVS and helps out at Head Start in Amherst, located in the former Children’s Developmental Center on Erie Court.
“I want to be a kindergarten through third grade teacher and this experience is preparing me for that,” she said.
JVS juniors have the chance to take part in work-based learning experiences. They are placed in daycare or early childhood centers throughout the county and spend seven to eight days there over a two-month period.
“They get real-life experience in classrooms with students who have diverse backgrounds and needs. It is such an amazing experience for them,” said instructor Hilary Duffala.
Head Start teacher Leanna McGuire is thrilled when JVS students are placed in her classroom.
“It is nice to have JVS students because they actually do this work in their lab every day and you can tell,” McGuire said. “The environment is not overwhelming to them, they already have a few good ideas, and they are coming into something they are comfortable with.”
Head Start is a comprehensive child development program funded by the federal government and the flagship program of community action agencies throughout the nation. It aims to prepare children for kindergarten while promoting self-sufficiency for both children and their parents.