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Uncertainty surrounding Kalamazoo County Head Start
KALAMAZOO, Mich. (NEWSCHANNEL 3) - Parents with kids in Kalamazoo County Head Start say all they can do is wait with no solid answers on whether the program will still be there in the fall.
Brittney Horton's daughter was supposed to start her second year in the program.
"I don't know which way to go I'm waiting to get a letter in the mail telling me where my daughter will be located or if there will be a location," says Horton.
Program administrators can't give her any answers because they also don't know who will run the program that provides preschool and health care services for 626 three and four year olds in the county.
County commissioners voted last year to let KRESA run it but the federal government has not given them the grant to do it.
And so close to 100 teachers and staff packed up their classrooms on their last day Friday unsure if they'll be back.
"I do feel bad, that's their job, that's what they've known for 22 years, they've worked with a lot of kids, seen them come and go, it's sad for them, they don't know if they'll have a job," says Horton.
Community leaders like Lori Mercedes with the Hispanic American Council says the work Head Start does would be very hard to replace.
"If we are known as the home of the promise, it's not going to happen overnight and it has to start at a very young age, so I think Head Start plays a very crucial role in that," says Mercedes.
The county's funding runs out next month.