Key Resources

Leadership and Governance Resources

The National Center on Program Management and Fiscal Operations (PMFO) and the Office of Head Start (OHS) have created a suite of leadership and governance resources to support Head Start leaders. Use them to meet the requirements of Sec. 642(d)(3) of the Head Start Act and the terms and conditions of the five-year project period grant award.

Governance Readiness Tool

Governance Readiness Tool

Governing bodies and Tribal Councils can use this fillable PDF tool to help assess their overall strength and readiness to oversee a Head Start program based on 15 indicators of high-functioning governing bodies. Executive directors, Head Start directors, and governing body members will want to work together to engage in a leadership assessment and use the results to celebrate strengths and develop a training and technical assistance (T/TA) plan to guide future improvement efforts.

Governance, Leadership, and Oversight Capacity Screener

Governance, Leadership, and Oversight Capacity Screener

This fillable screener must be completed by all newly funded Head Start and Early Head Start grantees within 60 days of receiving notification of five-year award. It helps programs identify where they may need to make changes to fully comply with the Head Start Act and governance regulations. Programs will want to revisit this tool with program leaders to chart their progress in fully implementing regulations and update T/TA plans accordingly.

Head Start Governing Body and Tribal Council Certification

Head Start Governing Body and Tribal Council Certification

Designed for new governing body members, Tribal Council members, Head Start directors, and executive directors, this interactive learning module explains the history and mission of Head Start. It also reviews Head Start governing body regulations and describes strategies for embracing legal and fiscal responsibilities. Successful participants receive a Certificate of Completion.

Head Start Program Governance Training: Building Skills of Head Start Leaders

Head Start Program Governance Training: Building Skills of Head Start Leaders

The activities in this interactive training module focus on the key skills needed by both Policy Council and governing body members to fulfill their important responsibilities. The module provides real-world scenarios for developing and furthering governance and leadership skills. The activities can be used for self-directed and self-paced learning or adapted for group training sessions. Leaders will want to build these activities into their governing body and Policy council T/TA plans.

Resources for New Directors and Managers

Learning for New Leaders: Head Start A to Z

Learning for New Leaders: Head Start A to Z

The sessions and resources in this collection address the unique needs of new Head Start and Early Head Start leaders. Directors, managers, and others who are just beginning their leadership roles in Head Start will find these materials helpful for their own professional development and for orienting other new directors and managers.

What Head Start Leaders Need to Know

What Head Start Leaders Need to Know

This online directory links Head Start and Early Head Start leaders and managers to essential program resources relevant to their daily work. The product includes an overview of Head Start's 10 management systems.

What is Leadership?

What Is Leadership?

Use this Management Matters presentation and the reflection questions that accompany it to help directors, governing body and Policy Council members, managers, and staff consider how leadership is different from other work. Learn to identify opportunities to lead, regardless of the position held in an organization.

Planning Resources

Foundations for Excellence: Planning in Head Start

Foundations for Excellence: Planning in Head Start

This series of papers and downloadable forms was developed by the six Head Start National Centers. They support programs in developing and implementing effective planning systems. Head Start leaders and management teams, including governing body and Policy Council members, may use these papers to develop plans for tracking their progress in a meaningful way.

The Head Start Program Planning Cycle

The Head Start Program Planning Cycle

Program planning is one of the 10 Head Start management systems. This Management Matters video presentation and supporting materials focus on how the Head Start Program Planning Cycle can assist grantees in providing an effective and high-quality Head Start or Early Head Start program.

Self-Assessment: Your Annual Journey

Self-Assessment: Your Annual Journey

Explore this interactive module for skill-building activities around self-assessment that can be used in program. This self-paced training also includes new resources to help the self-assessment process run smoothly and produce useful results. This module is designed for new and experienced program leaders, governing bodies, and Tribal Councils. It can also be helpful for Head Start and Early Head Start Policy Council members, and key members of the self-assessment team.

Strategic Use of Consultants

Strategic Use of Consultants

Use this set of interactive online learning activities and downloadable resources to find practical strategies for using consultants to bring about positive, lasting organizational change.

Fiscal Resources

Working as a Team for Better Fiscal and Program Outcomes

Working as a Team for Better Fiscal and Program Outcomes

Use the interactive activities and supporting materials in this Management Matters session to help leaders and managers focus on practical steps for building and strengthening the partnership between program and fiscal leaders.

Cost Allocation

Cost Allocation

This Management Matters presentation focuses on cost allocation as a key element of the Fiscal Management System. Cost allocation is the process of assigning the shared cost of an item or service to two or more programs. Organizations use cost allocation to ensure that costs are shared equitably across different funding sources and programs.

Recordkeeping and Reporting Resources

Data in Head Start and Early Head Start

Data in Head Start and Early Head Start

Explore practical scenarios, real-life examples from the field, and tools and templates that assist programs in planning for and implementing data to inform decision-making. There are two learning modules in this interactive series: Creating a Culture of Data and Digging Into Data.

Last Reviewed: August 2015

Last Updated: October 27, 2016