St. John Head Start/Prek Home

Our Mission Statement:

The mission of the St. John the Baptist Parish Early Childhood program is to provide comprehensive early childhood education to all children in the communities served by the school district. 
The program strives to ensure economically disadvantaged and disabled pre-school children enter their education experience ready to learn and to involve parents in the early education of their children.
The Early Childhood program is a community partnership unifying childcare programs under the leadership of the St. John the Baptist Parish Public School District. Our school district oversees curriculum, teacher observations, assessments, and other resources at six participating facilities, in addition to nineteen Head Start and Pre-K classrooms embedded within five of our public elementary schools.
Childcare centers that are part of the network include Little Stars, Garden of Eden Christian Academy, Kids of Distinction Learning Academy, Little Blessings Learning Academy, Little Harvard Learning Academy, and Little Leaders Learning Academy.
These childcare centers and the school district work together to provide all children in St. John the Baptist Parish, from infant to pre-kindergarten, with a solid early childhood education so that they enter kindergarten with the skills they need to be successful.
  • 1:1 Student to computer ratio
  • $58 Million in Capital Bond Improvements
  • Universal Pre-K
  • Established St. John the Baptist Education Foundation to Support Teachers and Students

About Us

Welcome to our school! We believe that parent participation is key to student success; our new website is designed to provide parents with all the information they need to be active participants in their student’s education. You will find that the site works just as well on mobile devices as it does on a desktop so you can find information on the go.

Recent News

Open Enrollment

2024-2025 Open Enrollment

St. John the Baptist Parish Early Childhood Programs and Community Network kicks off the annual Open Enrollment Application Period for the 2024-2025 school year.

Upcoming Events

Director’s Message

Dear Early Childhood Family,
Welcome back to the 22-23 school year! I am elated to serve as your Early Childhood
Director. This is where it all began in 2006. It feels great to be back. It’s important that
we serve all of our scholars, families, and community partners with the highest level of
respect. Our parents are entrusting us with their most precious gems and it’s our
responsibility to cherish, educate, and nurture them. We are truly grateful for this
As we approach a new year, I am extremely excited about what’s to come. The journey
begins here! Early Childhood is the link to a successful academic foundation, and we
are committed to growing each and every child we encounter. We must ensure they
grow to their full potential and become “Kindergarten Ready.”
I will support your needs as a director ensuring you and your scholar will grow. No one
is perfect and together we will maintain the greatest Early Childhood Program there is.
There is always more to do, more to learn, and more to achieve. The journey begins
with us, and no one is alone. We must work together collaboratively to have a
successful year. I am here to serve you. We are in this together.
Parental involvement in your child’s education is the key to your child’s early school
success and promotes positive long-term effects. Many Head Start parents and
guardians have gained confidence and skills that have enabled them to acquire jobs,
education, and identify advocacy strengths. I encourage you to attend Parent Meetings
as often as possible to learn about the opportunities for growth for you, your child, and
your entire family.
I look forward to working with each one of you and being able to walk along this journey
to excellence with you. If you ever need me, please don’t hesitate to call me at 985-535-
Melissa Gayden Watson
Director of Early Childhood and Head Start
Journey to Excellence