Region XI Head Start children’s Native language and culture experiences in their homes and communities
Members of the Tribal Early Childhood Research Center Native Language and Culture Community of Learning used data from the 2015 American Indian and Alaska Native Head Start Family and Child Experiences Survey (AI/AN FACES) to prepare a research brief on Region XI Head Start children’s Native language and culture experiences in their homes and communities. The brief provides background on the importance of language and culture in children’s development. It also highlights the extent to which Native language is used in children’s homes and the extent to which parents value children’s Native language learning and use. Although English is the primary language spoken in 95% of Region XI children’s homes, nearly half of Region XI children are in homes that use a Native language at least some of the time. Nearly all parents (91% of parents in homes where there is no Native language use, and 99% of parents in homes where there is at least some Native language use) feel that it is somewhat or very important that their children learn a Native language. The brief includes policy and practice implications of the data for Native language and culture in Head Start and other early childhood settings. For example, the brief states, “community-based credentialing to certify language teachers and support for bilingual instruction and assessments in languages other than English can support AI/AN communities’ efforts to revitalize Native language and culture by removing some of the obstacles. Home- and center-based early childhood education and care programs such as Home Visiting, Head Start, and Child Care can support the inclusion of Native language and culture in the programs’ home-to-school connection efforts. These programs are in a unique position to get to know families and build upon families’ specific cultural strengths.”
The brief in its entirety can be accessed at the Administration for Children and Families AI/AN FACES website here https://www.acf.hhs.gov/sites/default/files/opre/aian_head_start_2015_survey_june_2019.pdf. For more information about the Tribal Early Childhood Research Center, go to www.tribalearlychildhood.org.
American Indian and Alaska Native Head Start Family and Child Experiences Survey 2019 (AI/AN FACES 2019) Highlights
Since 1997, the Head Start Family and Child Experiences Survey (FACES) has been a regular source of nationally representative data on Head Start programs, centers, classrooms, children, and families. Until the 2015–2016 program year, however, FACES had not been conducted in Region XI AI/AN Head Start programs. This was due in part to the time and resources required to engage in the intensive community-based planning and implementation process needed to successfully carry out the study in partnership with Region XI Head Start programs and communities. In 2015, the American Indian and Alaska Native Head Start Family Experiences Survey (AI/AN FACES) was the first national study of Region XI American Indian and Alaska Native (AI/AN) Head Start children, families, and programs. The next American Indian and Alaska Native Head Start Family and Child Experiences Survey 2019 (AI/AN FACES 2019) will provide the latest information about Region XI and reflect current policy and program practices, with a particular focus on children’s school readiness skills.
AI/AN FACES 2015 Briefs | A Portrait of Children and Families and Children's Growth and Development
Two new briefs utilizing data from the AI/AN Head Start Family and Child Experiences Survey 2015 are now available!
A Year in Region XI Head Start: Children’s Growth and Development from the American Indian and Alaska native Family and Child Experiences Survey 2015 – link here
Region XI American Indian and Alaska Native Head Start: A Portrait of Children and Families – link here
Additional resources can be found on the AI/AN FACES page of the ACF/OPRE website here.