Survey of the Harrison County Head Start Program, Gulfport, Mississippi

HRD-78-82: Published: Mar 10, 1978. Publicly Released: Mar 10, 1978.

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The Harrison County Head Start Program, operated by the Harrison County Civic Action Committee, Inc., in Gulfport, Mississippi, received $2,246,424 in Head Start funds and $243,735 from the Department of Agriculture to reimburse Head Start's food costs for the 13-month grant period ended August 31, 1977. A survey examiined the audit work performed by Moore & Powell, a certified public accounting firm, in its audit of the program for the 13-month period. Moore & Powell conducted its audit with professional care and in accordance with GAO standards and Head Start audit guidelines. Some Head Start employees may not have qualified for their positions and, since the grantee did not maintain documentation supporting employee promotions, GAO was unable to determine whether the filling of vacancies complied with the Head Start manual. Enrollment has declined for the last 3 years and was below the level required by the grant in November 1977. A review of the eligibility of program participants showed that 21 percent of the children enrolled in the program were from families whose total income exceeded the poverty level, 10 percent of enrollees come from families above the poverty level, 11 percent of the children were ineligible to participate. Other problems noted include a lack of controls over property and supplies, unnecessary payments for bus maintenance, and wide variations in food costs.

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