Advancing Racial & Ethnic Equity
in Early Childhood 


The Head Start Belief

"Head Start is rooted in the belief that every child has the ability to succeed in school and in life. Ending injustice, racism, and bias is fundamental to delivering on this promise."        -NHSA

Supporting Every Child: 
"Equity, diversity, and inclusion are assurances that every person has value and deserves the opportunity to realize their full potential."       -NHSA

HSEOC's Commitment 
"Head Start of Eastern Orange County is fully committed to fulfill the fundamental belief that every child has the right to succeed in school & life.  It is our responsibility & mission to provide equitable learning opportunities while embedding race, culture and diversity in our every day practice so that every child can see themselves consistently represented & meet his/her full potential."   

                           - Janett Rodriguez, M.Ed.- Executive Director/Head Start Director of HSEOC

Shadow on Concrete Wall

Addressing Racial Inequities Begins
in Early Childhood


"Research demonstrates that children’s awareness of racial differences and the impact of racism begins quite early (Tatum 2003; Winkler 2009). Multiple studies document the ways that young children take notice of racial differences and note that as early as preschool, children may begin excluding their peers of different races from play and other activities (Winkler 2009). Many argue that creating safe spaces for children to explore these topics is more important than ever, given the current political and cultural climate, where these issues are highly visible."
-Pitts 2016; Harvey 2017; Poon 2017).... NAEYC

Advancing Racial and Ethnic Equity

in Head Start

The Advancing Racial and Ethnic Equity in Head Start Webinar Series promotes anti-bias and anti-racism strategies Head Start  programs use in their practices, services, and systems. It builds upon foundations in the Multicultural Principles for Early Childhood Leaders and the Head Start Program Performance Standards. It also complements Head Start's history of anti-racism in action. Watch the webinars to reflect on individual perspectives and see our commitment to building program environments that communicate genuine care, value, and respect for all children, families, and staff.

Topics for the four-part series include:

  • Exploring terminology and engaging in challenging conversations about racism

  • Discussing children's understanding of race and identity development

  • Developing anti-bias teaching practices

  • Examining principles and policies for human resource systems that honor diversity, equity, and inclusion

  • Exploring intersections of health and racial equity to support the wellness of children, families, and staff.                                                                                                                                                                                                    -ECKLC

 "It is through the teaching of our young children that we can affect the most change.."    -ECEA


"Literature plays a powerful role in helping children form value systems. Children start to understand what is—and is not—valued by authors and stories. Part of learning to read is being able to look critically at the images and messages in books, to understand what we can learn from authors, but also to think about problematic stereotypes authors and illustrators might perpetuate."    -Teaching Tolerance



How do I talk to my child about racism?

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