Non-Federal Share



Since Head Start's beginning, the federal government has committed to cover 80% of the actual costs of program services. The remaining 20% needed to operate the program must be garnered from other sources. This portion is called non-federal share.Non-federal share may be cash or “in-kind”.  Cash match may include state funds, local funds, private or corporate donations, etc.  In-kind is a contribution of goods or services (i.e. time, materials).

Regulations & Policy

HS Performance Standard 1303.4

Federal financial assistance to a Head Start program will not exceed 80 percent of the approved total program costs. Head Start contractors must contribute 20 percent as non-federal match each budget period. To learn about the regulations review the following:



Here are a few tools to assist staff with understanding and computing non-federal share. The training manual covers all areas of non-federal share, along with including examples. The cheat sheet serves as a reference tool for what is and what is not considered in-kind. The Computation Worksheet calculates the details by month for program donations, classroom volunteers and family activity calendars. 

NOTE: The computation worksheet must be printed out monthly and maintained in your sites NFS binder


Records must be maintained for donated goods, services and volunteers that provide any services which support the program and for which the program would normally have to pay for.  These are the forms used to record and document these items:


NOTE: Family Activity Calendars are included on the Parent Monthly Information page



By the 15th of each month, each site must email their NFS Summary Worksheet to

Note: At the beginning of the program year, each site will receive a Non-Federal Share Summary Worksheet that includes their non-federal share target for the year. Below is a sample of what the NFS Summary Worksheet looks like.  

Non-Federal Share Binder

To ensure consistency, each site’s Non-Federal Share binder will be organized as follows:

  • Training Manual
  • Cheat Sheet
  • Rate Sheet
  •  Monthly Activity
    • Monthly Summary Worksheet
    • Family Activity Calendars
    • Classroom Volunteers
    • Donation Forms


Non-Federal Share will be monitored twice per year in addition to the annual Grantee monitoring review.

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