Arizona Head Start Association Newsletter
Arizona Head Start Association
May 2012 Happenings


Greetings AHSA members and friends!


May has flown by in a hurry with preschool classes ending and transitions to kindergarten on the horizon!  This is the time of year that our programs also transition from one program year to the next, diligently calculate PIR (program information report) data, plan for pre-service staff training and look to fall to implement changes and improvements.  Our work doesn't slow down in the summer, it just changes! 


Our May Quarterly Training, General Membership Meeting and Board Meeting were a rousing success!  On Wednesday, Laura Landis, from our own state-based Head Start T/TA center did an all-day session around 'CLASS and Raising Scores in the Instructional Support Domain'.  While the majority of participants were Head Start staff, a few partners joined us from First Things First and private child care.  In fact, this was SO successful, some of us are making plans to offer this training more broadly throughout the state for Head Start and Quality First participants.  Stay tuned for details!


Our General Membership Meeting on Thursday was very well attended and we had the luxury of having NHSA Executive Director, Yasmina Vinci join us for an in- depth update of what Head Start is facing from a federal perspective.  What an honor to have Yasmina join us for the day!  On Friday, during our Board Meeting, our AHSA Committee Chairs reported all kinds of interesting information.  Their meeting minutes are posted on our website.  Partners are invited to join AHSA Committee Meetings.  Email the Committee Chair, also on our website, to learn more.  Lastly, we were also joined by the Region IX Head Start Association for a collaborative meeting with their members.  The Region IX Association represents Arizona, California, Nevada, Hawaii and the Outer Pacific Islands.       


Our mailing address has changed.  Be sure to use our new address...  


AHSA, PO Box 45483., Phoenix, AZ 85064 



Are you trying to find a Head Start program?  Just click here!  

Upcoming AHSA Events:  Save these Dates ...




Prescott - Prescott Resort & Conference Center - registration available mid-July 

August 22, 2012               AHSA/AZ T/TA Training Day
August 23, 2012               AHSA Quarterly Membership Meeting                                                & AHSA Committee Meetings
August 24, 2012               AHSA Board Meeting

Phoenix - Desert Willow Conference Center - registration available mid-August
October 18, 2012             6th Annual AHSA Mental Health Symposium
October 19, 2012             6th Annual AHSA Mental Health Symposium

Month of May   


The old saying goes 'Better late than never' that really true?  In this case, YES!  While the month of May is soon in our rear view mirror, these are worthwhile efforts all year long.  Check these websites to learn about resources and plan for next year!    


Asthma Awareness Month   

EPA's Communities in Action Asthma Initiative supports local programs working to help people in their communities bring asthma under control. An important part of this Initiative is raising awareness that asthma is a serious, sometimes life-threatening chronic disease that can be controlled. Don't wait to take action - you can make every month Asthma Awareness Month.   


Better Hearing and Speech Month
Helping People Communicate -This annual event provides opportunities to raise awareness about communication disorders and to promote treatment that can improve the quality of life for those who experience problems with speaking, understanding, or hearing. We have many resources to help you celebrate BHSM every day.

National Mental Health Month

May is Mental Health Month and has provided an opportunity to raise awareness about mental health issues for more than 50 years.


Mental Health America launched Mental Health Week, which eventually became May is Mental Health Month, in 1949. Each May, Americans recognize Mental Health Month with events and activities in communities across the country. The theme for Mental Health Month this year is "Get Connected" to emphasize the important role of social relationships in protecting and improving mental health and building resiliency. Many organizations, including NAMI, engage in efforts to promote Mental Health Month.


There are now designated times in May for groups to raise awareness and advocate for improvements in research, prevention and treatment on specific mental health issues. The first week in May, for example, has been designated as Children's Mental Health Week. But the specific times are not as important as educating about all mental illnesses any time of the year.


National Vision Month
Healthy Vision Month is designed to elevate vision as a health priority for the Nation.

Skin Cancer Awareness Month
May Is Skin Cancer Awareness Month: Protect Your Skin.  While you enjoy the outdoors this summer, protect yourself from skin cancer by seeking shade, wearing sunglasses, a hat, and sun-protective clothing, and using sunscreen.


National Foster Care Awareness Month  

Across Arizona people are helping children in foster care build brighter futures by serving as their foster parents, relative caregivers, mentors, advocates, social workers and volunteers.


But much more help is needed. Most communities are urgently seeking more everyday people to come forward and support our state's most vulnerable children so they may realize their full potential.  To learn more, click here and here. 




New Ballot Initiative for the Fall  


A ballot initiative called The Quality Education and Jobs Act (QEJA) is expected to be on the November ballot.



  • renews the one-cent sales tax
  • prevents legislators from cutting K-12 funding
  • fully funds KidsCare and other health and human service programs
  • provides dedicated funding linked to performance and accountability for K-12 students
  • makes university and community college scholarships available.
  • Protect children by establishing a Family Stability and Self-Sufficiency Fund administered by the Governor's Office to provide grants to help reduce hunger, homelessness, family violence and provide child care.   

ACCA Engagement Milestones and Actions 

ACCA Quality Education and Jobs and Child Care  

Why Register Vote and Sign 


For more information the Quality Education and Jobs website. 



Pediatricians Promote Play       


"Play is essential to the social, emotional, cognitive, and physical well-being of children beginning in early childhood.  It is a natural tool for children to develop resiliency as they learn to cooperate, overcome challenges, and negotiate with others.  Play also allows children to be creative.  It provides time for parents to be fully engaged with their children, to bond with their children, and to see the world from the perspective of their child.  However, children who live in poverty often face socioeconomic obstacles that impede their rights to have playtime, thus affecting their healthy social-emotional development.  For children who are under resourced to reach their highest potential, it is essential that parents, educators, and pediatricians recognize the importance of lifelong benefits that children gain from play."

This strong statement on the importance of play summarizes a clinical report from the American Academy of Pediatrics published in the January issue of
Pediatrics.  This report should be included in every early childhood professional's advocacy tool kit. 


Challenging Behavior Webinar     


June 12, 2012, from 1-2pm East Coast Time:   


Arizona time is from 10:00-11:00 am 


1-Hour Introduction to FLIP IT:  Transforming Challenging Behavior Webinar ~ FREE ~ Facilitated by the author, Rachel Sperry!  For those who work with children 3-8 years old.  To learn more and register, click here. 

Upcoming Conferences & Trainings


National Head Start Manager & Director Academy 

June 4-7, 2012

Louisville, KY      


NAEYC Professional Development Institute

June 10-13, 2012

Indianapolis, IN


National Indian Head Start Directors Association, Management Training Conference

June 11-15, 2012

Acme, MI


The 16th Annual Birth to Three Institute

June 11-14, 2012 
Washington, DC  

Head Start's 11th National Research Conference

June 18-20, 2012 

Washington, D.C.     


"Becoming a Mom/Comenzando bien Training Session"

June 21, 2012

Phoenix, AZ



2012 Intertribal Circle of Caring & Sharing Training Conference  

June 27-29, 2012

Chandler, AZ 


2012 Arizona Early Childhood Summit  

August 19, 2012  

August 20 and 21, 2012 

Phoenix, AZ

National Head Start Fall Leadership Institute 
September 17-21, 2012
Washington, DC

6th Annual Arizona Head Start Association Birth to Five Mental Health Symposium - registration available mid-August
Theme:  Building Social Emotional Foundations for School Readiness
October 18-19, 2012
Phoenix, AZ

DEC's 28th Annual International Conference On Young Children With Special Needs & Their Families
October 28-30, 2012
Minneapolis, MN

NAEYC Annual Conference & Expo
November 7-10, 2012
Atlanta, GA

27th National Training Institute (NTI)
November 29 - December 1, 2012
Los Angeles, CA

National Head Start Parent Conference and Family Engagement Institutes 
December 1-5, 2012
Dallas, TX

National Head Start Winter Leadership Institute
January 28 - February 1, 2013
Washington, DC

10th Annual National Training Institute on Effective Practices: Supporting Young Children's Social Emotional Development
March 20-23, 2013 
Clearwater Beach, FL

40th National Head Start Conference - info coming soon
April 28 - May 2, 2013
Washington, D.C.


Are you interested in joining AHSA as an Affiliate Member or a Corporate Sponsor

Depending on your level of membership or sponsorship, your participation includes a menu of benefits such as attending AHSA events at member prices, vendor tables at our annual conference, speaking in person to AHSA membership & board, company logo on AHSA website, and sending email to our list of over 2200 recipients!

                  Contact Bonnie for more information or an application! 


We hope you have enjoyed this issue of the AHSA Happenings.  If you would like to have information included, please contact usPlease forward to members of the Head Start community and our ECE Friends.  Encourage them to 'subscribe' to learn more about what is going on in Arizona's Head Start programs!

Arizona Head Start Association
602-338-0449 (phone)  
PO Box 45483. 
Phoenix, AZ 85064 (office hours by appointment only)