Federal budget cuts could be affecting Head Start in a big way. The organization stands to lose more than $400,000 worth of nationwide funding if automatic spending cuts scheduled for March 1 take effect.
The cuts would also affect about two million workers. Many low income families rely on Head Start, and it would prevent 70,000 children from entering Head Start programs.
"These cuts would be very devastating to their ability to hold down a job or continue in school,” said Shasta Head Start Executive Director Carla Clark .
Shasta Head Start alone serves three different counties: Shasta, Siskiyou and Trinity. Together they have 993 students. If the cuts were made, Shasta Head Start could lose up to $1 million, which amounts to about ten percent of its funding.
Tehama County’s Head Start is also worried. If impacted, it could lose up to $200,000 – the cost of a whole classroom.
"We are all so nervous, they are waiting and they’re watching. We all are,” said Clark.
Head Start will not know the outcome until March.