Update Your Eligibility Requirements

With Poverty Guidelines for 2020

During the ERSEA process, time is your agency’s most valuable commodity.

When it comes to eligibility requirements, the less time you spend on data entry the more you can work with a family in need.

The Department of Health and Human Services released its annual Poverty Guidelines for 2020 earlier this month. Which means it’s the perfect time to plan ahead and update your program’s eligibility requirements.


What happens after the Poverty Guidelines are published?

Head Start Performance Standards require programs to update the poverty guidelines for their programs annually.

While some programs choose to begin using next year’s poverty guideline information as soon as it is published, others may decide to determine a child’s eligibility based on the current year’s information.

It can quickly get confusing and labor intensive for staff to calculate eligibility requirements based on multiple guidelines. Especially when they are likely processing dozens, if not hundreds, of applications.

Imagine what it would be like to seamlessly access poverty guideline calculations and eligibility points, regardless of which year they’re applying for.

In COPA, this information is literally at your fingertips.

How do I update the eligibility requirements in COPA?

As a SuperAdmin in COPA, you can log in on the back end of the system to update the income levels for current and next year. You can also set the eligibility points criteria unique to your Head Start, Early Head Start, and Migrant Head Start programs.

Once the information has been updated, it is stored and used to determine eligibility status for incoming applications. Moreover, the system can even be configured to place a child on a waitlist.



Updating the Poverty Guidelines information will save you and your staff precious time during the enrollment process. If you’d like more information about eligibility criteria, contact infomycopa.com.