Strategic Planning

Strategic Planning Seminars for Local Head Start Programs
by the Center for Community Futures

For info, call Jim Masters at 510-749-7570 or send an e-mail to


Results/Outcomes and Planning for Head Start Programs: We shape this draft agenda to meet your need.

1. A brief history of strategic planning in human service programs.

2. The new G.P.R.A. framework: key terms and definitions used by all Federal agencies.

Purpose, vision, values, mission, goals, objectives, results and outcome measures.

3. Strategic Planning in H.H.S.

The H.H.S. Strategic Plan and how A.C.F. fits into it.

The ACF Strategic Plan and how Head Start fits into it.

The Federal Review tool and performance standards for local Head Start planning – what is required.

How CSBG and ROMA relate to Head Start strategic planning.

4. Compare and contrast strategic planning processes for possible use in your local Head Start program. You may decide to adopt elements from one or more of these approaches:

Region IV Q.I.C.

United Way of America, strategic planning and results.

Wilder Foundation, Minneapolis, MN

"Applied Strategic Planning in a Head Start Setting." Tim Nolan, Ph.D.

Strategic Mapping, by The Rensselearville Institute, Rensselearville, New York

Strategic Planning for America’s Schools.

C.S.B.G. and R.O.M.A.

G.P.R.A. framework and definitions.

Appreciative Inquiry

5. How various pieces fit together – or don’t.

The Community Assessment grew to include topics that are in strategic plans.

How to use the Federal Review tool to shape your program area plans/strategic plan.

Policies and procedures and how they can relate to plans.

Relating your Plan to the Grant Application ACYF-IM-HS-00-12.

6. The incredible challenges with measuring results and outcomes in human development. The social science methods are very difficult to use. That is why FACES and the Impact Evaluation are national studies. Locally -- don’t bite off more than you can chew!
We will review several approaches to outcome measurement:

Individual and family outcomes; scales and ladders

Community outcomes

Why you should avoid using social indicators to measure your results

Using Child Outcomes in Program Self-Assessment. ACYF-IM-HS-00-18

How FACES relates to G.P.R.A., the H.H.S. A.C.F. plan and your strategic plan

"Now you’ve got the background needed, let’s create your local approach!"

7. Create your plan-for-planning and the framework for your plan. "Hands on" exercises to:

Clarify WHY you are planning and what you want to get done with your plan.

Choose the scope of your plan, and the major issues you will and won’t address.

Mark up your strategic plan framework (the outline or table of contents for your plan).

Use the Federal Review tool to create a goal structure for your plan.

Relate the Head Start plan and goal structure to a sponsor agency plan/goals.

Put the mandatory results and outcome measures under the correct goal.

Discuss 4 methods for identifying new indicators if no indicators exist yet.

Identify WHO will be involved in your planning process, WHY, and WHEN, and WHAT’S IN IT FOR THEM.

Clarify planning management tasks and who will do them.

Create a planning calendar.

You will leave this seminar with:

  • The first draft of your own strategic plan framework. Use, modify or replace sections of the framework that is presented in the workshop.

  • Your plan-for-planning checklist and worksheets.

  • Your draft planning calendar.

  • A diskette with the seminar workbook, the exercises, the draft plan-for-planning, the draft of the outline for your plan, and many other planning tools on it.

  • Your anxieties soothed, your fears calmed – and 40 terrific handouts.

On-Site Training.

Yes, we can do this seminar for your staff, Policy Council, Sponsor Board/staff, delegate agencies, the trainers you will use locally -- and anybody else you want. Limited to 75 participants per session. This is especially good for working out an approach with delegate agencies about how to develop a plan together. Or, get several sponsors to share the cost. The basic cost for a two-day session is $2,500, plus travel and printing costs. Create the consensus you need to get your process moving!


For info about the lead trainer, see Jim Masters' page.


What Your Colleagues Say About The Seminar

"Samples and drafts were excellent! The trainer has extensive knowledge about the subject." -- Naimah Sierra, Director of Planning, Action for Better Community, Rochester, NY

"Just outstanding. Very grateful for the information and materials." -- Steve Hoffman, MIS Manager.

"Jim is a valuable resource." -- Shirley Hall, Deputy Director of Early Childhood, ABC Head Start Program, Rochester, NY

"Excellent!" -- Eric Record, Program Operations Manager, Community Action of NE Indiana, Ft. Wayne, IN

"Practical suggestions. Interesting experiences. Excellent knowledge of human services." -- Barbara Metcalf, Administrative Assistant, Central Texas Opportunities, Coleman, TX

If you would like more information about the Head Start Strategic Planning Seminars, call Jim Masters at 510-459-7570.