Head Start & Early Head Start Programs

Since 1965, LEO Inc. has hosted a robust Head Start Program for income-eligible residents in Lynn, Lynnfield, Marblehead, Nahant, Saugus, and Swampscott, serving on average 450 families annually.

Head Start is the leading preschool program that prepares low-income children ages 3 to 5 for kindergarten. Early Head Start works in tandem, encompassing the full range of a family’s need from pregnancy through the child’s third birthday. LEO has four Head Start and Early Head Start centers in Lynn. Together, they provide families with a comprehensive program of birth-to-five care and preschool education that engages both children and the adults in their lives to be behaviorally, cognitively, and physically prepared for school and future success.

Early Head Start, for children 6 weeks to 3 years, meets for six hours a day year-round at Stepping Stones Family Child Care Center. Compassionate, high-quality care goes hand in hand with a research-based curriculum that focuses on the individual needs of children and families, nutritious meals, hygiene routines, language development, group activities, socialization, and free play. Qualified LEO staff members assess every child for developmental delays and learning disabilities, partnering with Aspire Developmental Services to provide Early Intervention Services at a stage when they can transform a child’s learning journey.

Families that might not be ready for center-based programs can explore LEO’s Home-Based Care, which offers 90-minute meetings each week in the home setting. Home-Based Care is available for pregnant women and families with children from birth to age 3. Home visitors, parents and children engage in early learning and social development, health and wellness screening, and parenting support. Home-Based Care includes monthly parent-child socialization groups at Stepping Stones Family Child Care Center, as well as options for Early Intervention Services.

LEO has Head Start classrooms for 3 to 5 year olds at Blossom Street Child Care Center, the agency’s Broad Street headquarters, and at Jack Robinson Child Care Center (Massachusetts Department of Early Education and Care voucher slots are served at Jack Robinson). Classes meet for four hours a day, September-May, at Blossom and Broad Street sites. Jack Robinson is open for ten hours a day year-round to allow parents and guardians to work full time or attend classes.

Each child in Head Start receives wrap-around services that ensure school readiness, including:

  • Language and literacy
  • Science
  • Math
  • Movement and physical activity
  • Creative arts
  • Nutritious meals and snacks
  • Height, weight, vision, and hearing screenings
  • Behavioral health assessments

Head Start uses a two-generation approach to education that builds family well-being by intentionally and simultaneously working with children and the adults in their lives together. A team of teachers, curriculum specialists, health advocates, and case managers work together with our families to develop individualized learning and engagement plans so that children, and the adults in their lives, have the resources and opportunities to thrive. LEO prioritizes enrollment for children with the most urgent needs, including children who are homeless, are in foster living situations, or who have diagnosed disabilities.

To begin the enrollment process, fill out our online application:

children in LEO Inc. early education and care


children screened for Developmental Delays and Early Intervention


children received SPOT vision testing


adults improved their skills as parents


meals prepared by LEO Inc.