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Who We Are

Head Start of Shawnee Mission, Inc., began in 1965 as a summer enrichment program for 17 preschool-aged children from low-income families. Today we serve over 200 low-income children and their families in our Early Head Start and Head Start programs. In addition, we offer several opportunities for all families to benefit from our quality early education program with competitive rates and no income eligibility requirements.

Head Start KidsDennis Siefers, Vice President of Account Management at Midland Loan Services, presents a welcome gift of books to Renee Miller, Community Relations Coordinator, and Terrie Van Zandt-Travis, Executive Director.


Head Start of Shawnee Mission is a private, non-profit corporation. We provide a high quality early childhood education both in the home and center setting combined with comprehensive family support services that include medical, oral and mental health services, nutrition, services to children with disabilities, social services, parent involvement and family engagement events and opportunities.

How We Are Funded

Head Start of Shawnee Mission receives a portion of its funds from federal and state grants and relies on individual contributions and corporate and foundation grants for the rest. As a recipient of a federal Head Start grant we are mandated to raise local community dollars to fully serve our enrolled children and families. Specifically, for every $100 we receive in federal funding, we must raise a $25 match in cash and in-kind donations.


Although our program has grown to meet the needs of Johnson County families, our funding has not kept pace with the demand for services. During the decade, Johnson County's population grew 20% while at the same time the number of people living in poverty increased 134%. We average a waiting list of over 250 children who need our services, but must do without because we do not have the funding to serve them. Your volunteer support or contribution will help educate another child and empower their family to success! To find out more, select Make a Donation or Become Involved.

Annual Report

Click here to download our 2012-2013 annual report (2.8 Mb pdf).

Our Mission

The mission of Head Start of Shawnee Mission is to nurture children and strengthen families to enrich our community.

Our Vision Statement

Head Start of Shawnee Mission will be a leading center of excellence in
the growth and development of young children and support of their families.