Meet our Professional Development Program!
Training and Professional Development

Professional development staff

Early Education and Child Care Professional Development

We are a team of trainers and coaches who are passionate about improving the quality of early childhood services in Kansas and Missouri. We provide training and professional development opportunities in the community, at program sites, and at special events.

Have a question? This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or call us at 913-742-4113. We look forward to working with you soon!


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Trainings for Missouri Providers

 
Northland Programs: We have a couple of trainings coming up brought to you by the Northland Early Education Council
 
 
Autism Spectrum Disorder: Piecing Together Successful Outcomes
This session will focus on understanding the ASD (Autism Spectrum Disorder). The Autism Specialist from Easter Seals Midwest will provide us information on diagnostic criteria, signs and symptoms. Many programs are seeing more children with ASD and want ideas on helping all children to have successful outcomes. Amber will discuss with us Applied Behavior Analysis, sensory processing and strategies for successful interactions.
Friday, April 6th, 2018 from 11:30AM-2:00PM (2.0 Hours)
North Kansas City Hospital
2970 Clay Edwards Drive, North Kansas City, MO
Cost: $25.00 (include dinner)
 
Autism Spectrum Disorder: Piecing Together Successful Outcomes
This session will focus on understanding the ASD (Autism Spectrum Disorder). The Autism Specialist from Easter Seals Midwest will provide us information on diagnostic criteria, signs and symptoms. Many programs are seeing more children with ASD and want ideas on helping all children to have successful outcomes. Amber will discuss with us Applied Behavior Analysis, sensory processing and strategies for successful interactions.
Tuesday, April 24th, 2018 from 6:30PM-8:30PM (2.0 Hours)
North Kansas City Hospital
2970 Clay Edwards Drive, North Kansas City, MO
Cost: $15.00
Register Online
 

Here are our upcoming trainings through June 2018!

 

 

Creating a Welcoming Environment

Did you know that the way you arrange the classroom and outdoor areas directly affects how children act and learn? Discover how to include learning areas in your child care and early learning program. We will review how room arrangement and environment are key factors in child development.  Learn to identify outdoor safety considerations and common outdoor weather related injuries.

Thursday, April 26, 2018 from 6:00 PM – 9:00 PM                                                                      

Guiding Star Preschool

310 Johnston Parkway, Raymore, MO 64083

Cost: $15.00

Register Online Here

Print and Register Here

 

Guiding Children's Behavior

Ever wonder why children misbehave? Discover the causes of and techniques to reduce the behavior problems in your classroom or family child care. Learn how to make group management an interactive process, rather than a chore, by promoting social and emotional development, while building responsibility in young children. We will help you learn to introduce children to choices that you and they can live with. Learn effective tools for calming the child who is MAD!

Tuesday, May 1, 2018 from 6:00 PM – 9:00 PM (3.0 Hours)

Willow Woods Learning Center

14215 MO-92 Hwy, Platte City, MO 64079

Cost: $15.00

Register Online Here

Print and Register Here

 

What Infants and Toddlers are Telling Us

What have the infants or toddlers you work with told you today? Did you know that infants “talk” through crying and other non-verbal communications? While infants and toddlers cannot speak with words, they do communicate in many other ways. Learn how these cues form the foundation of language development. Learn how temperament, challenging behaviors and cultural traditions can shape how an infant or toddler will communicate. This session will also share how to discover the communication and meaning of behaviors such as biting and tantrums.

Saturday, June 2, 2018 from 9:30 AM – 11:30 AM (2.0 Hours)     

North Kansas City Hospital - Burlington Room

2800 Clay Edwards Drive, North Kansas City, MO 64116

Cost: $10.00

Register Online Here

Print and Register Here                                              

 

 

To Register Any of the Trainings Above:

 

Register online and fill out the fields completely. You will receive a confirmation e-mail to the e-mail you provide.

Print and Mail the registration form for 2017 and this registration form for 2018 complete filled out to:

The Family Conservancy

attn: Leanne Hilligas

444 Minnesota Avenue, Suite 200

Kansas City, KS 66101

Call and Register with a credit card to our Training Coordinator at 913-742-4113

Register online for MULTIPLE trainings using this online form

 

 


Don't see anything that meet's your needs?

 

  • Our staff can provide training events that are tailored to your program's needs.  Please This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to inquire about available training topics, or to request a specific topic.

 

 

  • Are you pursing a degree in early childhood education, or looking to obtain your CDA? You may qualify for financial assistance from the Missouri T.E.A.C.H. Scholarship!  Visit their website for more information: https://teach-missouri.org/
 

Trainings for Kansas Providers

Don't see anything that meet's your needs?

 

 

  • Our staff can provide training events that are tailored to your program's needs.  Please This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to inquire about available training topics, or to request a specific topic.

 

 

Registration is not complete until payment has been received. Call 1-800-755-0838 ext. 1912 to pay by credit card over the phone or mail payment to: 

The Family Conservancy

attn: Stacy Hamilton

444 Minnesota Avenue, Ste 200

Kansas City, KS 66101


 

Early Childhood Fall Symposium

Early Education Fall Symposium TrainingSAVE THE DATE! Our Early Childhood Fall Symposium will be held Saturday, October 6, 2018 at KU Edwards Campus BEST Conference Center in Overland Park.

 

The Family Conservancy’s annual Early Childhood Fall Symposium provides practical tools and valuable information from exceptional speakers and specialists in the early childhood field. The 2018 keynote speaker will be Jill Molli. You’re sure to leave with the knowledge and motivation to overcome any challenge. For registration updates sign up for our monthly email newsletter.

Have a question? This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or call us at 913-742-4113.

2018 Level 1 Director's Leadership Academy

The Family Conservancy Director Leadership Academy was designed by request of  early education directors.   It serves those who are currently a director, assistant director, other administrator or those who have a desire to be a director or leader in the field of early childhood.   The Academy provides leadership skills training and focuses on ways to become a more effective leader to meet the needs of the program, as well as of the staff, children and families entrusted in their care.   Class topics include:  Communication, team building, ethics, leadership traits, behaviors/characteristics of working with adults, advocacy, mentoring, coping with change, budgets, supporting families, employment practices, and other leadership concerns.  All programs will participate in a pre/post assessment using the Programs Administration Scale (PAS), will receive their own copies of the PAS book, and will use their pre-assessment results to set goals for the course of the project.  In addition, each participant will receive follow-up coaching during the project.

 

Because there are only 25 slots available for this session of the Director’s Leadership Academy, it is very important that you commit to attending and engaging in the complete series (5 sessions).   We will together challenge each other to intentionally ‘make a difference’ using our time, talents and resources.

 

Important Information to know before you apply and agree to participate:

When: The 5 sessions are to be held on the following Thursdays: 7/26/2018, 8/30/2018, 9/20/2018, 10/18/2018, 11/1/2018.

Time:   9:00am - 3:30 pm (6 clock hours each)

Location: Central United Methodist Church.   5144 Oak St, Kansas City, MO 64114

Cost: $75.00 per participant for 30 hours of approved training (note – if conditions listed in “Additional Information”  are met - $50 will be refunded to the participant at the last session

Included:   Snacks, all printed materials, notebook , clock hour training certificates (Kansas and Missouri), door prizes, on-site coaching

Additional Information: Participants will need access to an email account.   Up to 3 participants from any program may be considered for the Academy. $50 refund is contingent on attending a minimum of 75% of the sessions and hosting a parent event at the program.

 

If you are interested in applying for Director's Leadership Academy, Level 1, please fill out this application and return to Janelle Balarashti or register online at this link.

If you have questions about Director's Leadership Academy or would like to sign-up, please contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 913-742-4178.  

Jackson County Family Child Care Providers

 

FREE Professional Development Opportunity for Jackson County family child care providers!

 

 

The Family Conservancy is now recruiting family child care providers in Jackson County to participate in the Family Ties to Quality Partnerships project. Through this project, providers will recevie free training and coaching around increasing effective communication skills, developing professional relationships with families, and how to engage families to help ensure best outcomes for their children.

Services Include:

  • Network Opportunities with other FCC providers
  • Monetary stipends for trainings attended
  • One year paid membership for KidKare and Child Care Business Partnership
  • One year paid membership for the National Association for Family Child Care

 

How to Apply

  • Know somebody that might be interested? Take a look at our flyer.
  • Complete the application at this link
  • For questions or assistance contact Mary Williams at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 913-742-4191

Meet Our Team!

 

We are a team of trainers and coaches who are passionate about improving the quality of early childhood services in Kansas and Missouri.  We provide training and professional development opportunities in the community, at program sites, and at special events.

Pictured from Left to Right 

Back Row: Debbie Karlstrand, Shari Williams, Mary Williams, Marsha Wiard, Leanne Hilligas, Nancy Heathman, Janelle Balarshati

Front Row: Sue Sullivan, Heather Waterfield, Jenny Brandt, Jo Applegate, Jeannie Evans

Not Pictured: Carol Ayres, Emma Bart-Plange

 

Jenny Brandt, Director of Quality Initiatives and Professional Development

Years in Early Education: 18+ years

I oversee a department of passionate, determined, and innovative coaches and trainers. Our goal is to improve the quality of early childhood education in our community. My passion is to help the professionals in my field grow, and find ways to make their innovative ideas become reality.

Mary Williams, Quality Initiatives and Professional Development Program Manager

Years in Early Education: 13+ years 

I have BA in psychology and an M Ed. in Counseling and Guidance. I also hold a National Counseling Certification. I have worked in school age childcare, and then was an infant room teacher and eventually director at a Therapeutic Child Treatment program under the umbrella of services offered by the Greenville County Commission on Drug and Alcohol Abuse treatment in South Carolina. I worked as an Infant/Toddler Specialist at the Resource and Referral Agency in Wichita, KS before moving into the same position here at The Family Conservancy. I moved away for a couple years and stayed at home with my son while getting a baby sign instructor certification and then taught classes once a month at a local library. We moved back to Kansas City three years ago and I moved into my position as a early Education and Professional Development Specialist. I am now transitioning into my role as a Quality Initiatives and Professional Development Program Manager.

Jo Applegate, Quality Initiatives Administrative Coordinator

Years in Early Education: 15+ years

I came to The Family Conservancy in June 2002, and became the Quality Initiatives administrative assistant for a few years later. In my role, I support the Director of Quality Initiatives, the Vice President of Programs, the Quality Initiatives and Professional Development Program Manager, coaches, and trainers in a multitude of ways in day-to-day activities.

Carol Ayres, Early Education and Professional Development Specialist

Years in Early Education: 20+ years

I provide evidence based practices to support continued improvement and learning for early education professionals, families and children.

Janelle Balarashti, Quality Initiatives Grants Coordinator

Years in Early Education: 13+ years

I currently work with license exempt, registered and family child care providers in Missouri and assist with various projects as needed.  My passion for early education providers is assisting them in making each child and family feel successful in their own unique ways.

Emma Bart-Plange, Quality Initiatives Early Learning Coach

COMING SOON!

Jeannie Evans, Quality Initiatives Early Learning Coach

Years in Early Education: 28+ years

I work with Early Childhood Educators striving to improve the quality of care. I am passionate about giving all children a chance to feel valued and loved for who they are, while providing a rich environment conductive to learning. 

Nancy Heathman, Quality Initiatives Early Learning Coach

Years in Early Education: 39+ years

I coach and train for the Quality Initiatives/Professional Development department at The Family Conservancy, including teaching the Director's Leadership Academy. My passion in early education is working with administrators and early childhood professionals strengthening growth, learning and leadership skills. 

Leanne Hilligas, Training Coordinator

Years in Early Education: 7+ years

I currently coordinate and schedule professional development training in Missouri and Kansas as well as provide professional development trainings to Missouri early education staff. My experience is in assistant teaching, teaching in a licensed exempt, licensed, and Head Start Program in infants and toddlers, working in a Head Start partnership delegate, and in training coordination. My passion in early education is to work with young adults and students to advance their career in the early education field. 

Debbie Karlstrand, Child Development and Inclusion  Specialist

Years in Early Education: 23+ years

I have a Bachelor of Science in Early Childhood Education from the University of Missouri and a Master’s in Public Administration with an emphasis in Early Childhood Leadership from the University of Missouri-Kansas City. My passion in early education includes assisting educators in professional development, including e-Learning, supporting those in the CDA process and workforce development, supporting families, children and early childhood educators in the referral process and inclusion services, and parenting support and advocacy.

Sue Sullivan, Quality Initiatives Early Learning Coach

Years in Early Education: 40+ years

I work to help teachers improve their positive interactions with children so that children are successful socially/emotionally as well as intellectually.‚Äč

Heather Waterfield, Early Education and Professional Development Specialist

Years in Early Education: 20+ years

I currently work with parents, families, child care providers, and other early education specialists on improving the quality of child care for children in Kansas and Missouri. She has received numerous professional training including Kansas City Brain Child, Parents and Teachers, ACT Against Violence Program, Partnering with Parents Zero to Three, and the West Ed Program for Infant and Toddler Caregivers, and is a Certified National Playground Safety Inspector through the National Recreation and Parks Association. She is also working towards her Infant/Toddler HighScope Trainer certification.

Marsha Wiard, Early Education and Professional Development Specialist

Years in Early Education: 34+ years

I am a coach and trainer for early educators. I have a love and passion for making a difference for young children and their families.

Shari Williams, Early Education and Professional Development Specialist

COMING SOON!