Health and Safety

NHA Health and Safety Tips

NHA is committed to the overall safety of children, families and staff. Children’s Health and Safety is NHA’s top priority! These key responsibilities are implemented daily in every Head Start/Early Head Start Programs.


Staff ensures children are safe during drop-off and pickup times (supervision of sign-in-sheets, daily health checks, and Gatekeeper Passes.)

Transitions/ Child Head Counts

Staff always keep proper ratios are maintained at all times. Staff consistently scans the environment and counts and all staff know how many children are present at all times. Staff maintains visual supervision of children at all times.

Indoor/Outdoor Environment

Staff stay with children at all times and have continuous visual supervision and proper child to staff ratios. Staff inspects all indoor and outdoor areas each day to guarantee safety.

Critical Care

Staff keeps required medications for children, First Aid kits, and emergency contact information up-to-date and readily available during indoor and outdoor activities.


Staff and children wash hands before and after meals, upon arrival into the classrooms and after using the bathroom.

Safety Precautions

Each site has an emergency plan and evacuation drills are practiced on a monthly basis

Additional safety enhancements include:

  • The Quality Assurance team works with the NHA’s Operated Programs and Delegates observing and collecting data at each site to promote quality throughout all programs according to the Office of Head Start Performance Standards.

Safe Environments

Safe Environments

Head Start provides safe environments for children at all centers. Each center is monitored on a regular basis and information is reviewed for action to meet performance standards, assuring all children and staff are free from injury and harm.

CPR/First Aid Certified Staff

NHA requires all teaching staff to be certified in CPR/First Aid and prepared for unexpected emergencies. NHA has a certified CPR/First Aid trainer and has regularly scheduled on-site refresher sessions to ensure staff stays current on certifications.

Emergency Disaster Plan

NHA ensures that each site creates and maintains a comprehensive Emergency Disaster Preparedness Plan. Each site stores emergency bins with recommended food and supplies.  All staff have received training on what to do in the event of a disaster.

Pest Management

NHA Head Start strives to have the safest environments and is continually working on pest management to ensure centers are pest free. NHA abides by the current Integrated Pest Management standards (IPM).

Lead Safety

NHA has certified lead safe work practices personnel through the County of San Diego. Information is available at all sites regarding lead safety.


NHA employs a facilities and maintenance team to make certain all Head Start /Early Head Start centers are safe, in good repair and well maintained at all times. Classroom supplies and materials are readily available for staff and routine maintenance/repairs are done on-site.


Family Meal Style

NHA implements family style meal service in which caregivers role model for children. This included eating together, and allows children to serve themselves, with the assistance of supervising adults.  –link to nutrition page

Physical Activity

Physical activity is an essential component of a healthy lifestyle. In combination with healthy eating, it can help prevent a range of chronic diseases, including heart disease, cancer, and stroke, which are the three leading causes of death. Physical activity helps control weight, builds lean muscle, reduces fat, promotes strong bone, muscle and joint development, and decreases the risk of obesity. Children need 60 minutes of play with moderate to vigorous activity every day to grow up to a healthy weight.

Parents and caregivers can set a great example for the whole family by creating a healthy environment at home. Any combination of steps-making fruits and vegetables part of every meal, limiting treats, walking and playing, even shopping together-can add up to make a real difference in children’s lives and help build healthy habits for life. For more information please visit:

Mental Health

NHA Early Head Start/Head Start provides developmental screenings to children enrolled in our program. Teachers and parents work together to identify the needs of each child and to support the mental wellness for every child and family. NHA provides opportunities for parents and staff to learn about mental health awareness, including guidance on how to seek help.


Health Services

NHA ensures that all enrolled children have timely immunizations and screenings for cognitive development, basic health, speech and language, hearing, vision, and dental health.

Physical and Dental Examinations

In accordance with Head Start Performance Standards and Community Care Licensing each child enrolled in Head Start is required to receive a physical and dental examination.


In compliance with the California School Immunization Law, NHA Head Start ensures that all children enrolled in Early Head Start/Head Start are up-to-date on immunization requirements and immunization records are maintained in the Child File.

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