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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CLASS Institute

Have you heard of the Classroom Assessment Scoring System (CLASS)?

The Classroom Assessment Scoring System (CLASS) is a research based observation tool that focuses on the effectiveness of classroom interactions among teachers and children, because daily interactions promote children’s social, emotional, and cognitive development. Children thrive when teachers create nurturing, well-managed settings and provide frequent and engaging opportunities to learn.

Let us introduce you to The CLASS Institute for Cass, Clay, Jackson, and Platte counties in Missouri and Johnson and Wyandotte counties in Kansas!

 

What is The CLASS Institute?

The CLASS Institute provides training and coaching for your program to improve quality teacher/child interactions using the CLASS tool. We will help you learn more about this instrument and how to use it in your program, support one another, and how to sustain what you learn.

 

Training

Twenty-two hours of approved training for directors to attend together with multiple preschool teachers from their program. (Four hours of training take place on five Saturdays, and one additional two hour training.)

 

Coaching

Twelve hours of on-site group coaching for preschool teachers. (Director is required to participate in the last thirty minutes of each of the eight 1.5 hour sessions. Coverage will be needed for teachers as they will need to meet outside their classroom at the program).

 

Director Support Group

Twelve hours held in eight 1.5 hour sessions. Directors will meet together at a community location to learn more about how to integrate CLASS into their program and support their teachers and each other with this tool.

 

Individualized Coaching

Individualized one-on-one coaching is available to participating programs with toddler teachers that are committed to improving their interactions with the children (limited spots available).

 

When

August 2017 through June 2018

  • August and September --recruitment, collect commitment forms, and pre-assessments scheduled

  • September, October, November—Twenty hours of training on preschool CLASS

(Saturday Dates:  September 16 & 30, October 14, November 4 & 18, and December 9 for reschedule, if needed)

  • September, October, November, January, February, March, April, June—Twelve hours of Director’s Support Groups

  • December—CLASS assessments completed on teachers to set goals for group coaching

  • January—Group coaching introduction and CLASS refresher training (two hours)

  • February through May—Group coaching sessions

  • May and June—Post Observations

 

Incentives available for full participation

 

Are you interested in applying for the CLASS Institute? Please fill out a complete application by August 25, 2017.

Click here to access the application

Click here to access the committment form

 

Please e-mail, fax or mail the application AND committement form to:

The Family Conservancy

Attn: Shari Williams

444 Minnesota Avenue, Suite 200

Kansas City, KS 66101

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Phone: (913)-742-4116

Fax: (913)-342-3632

Trainings for Missouri Providers

 
Northland Programs: We have a couple of trainings coming up brought to you by the Northland Early Education Council
 
Upcoming After-Work Seminars
Take It Outside and Engage in Physical Activity
"Go outside and play!" is what our mother’s used to say. Children today spend less time playing outdoors than any previous generation. Participants will learn about the benefits of outdoor play and time in nature, as well as the adult's role in facilitating play in outdoor play spaces. Participants will also learn strategies to increase moderate to vigorous physical activity (MVPA) for themselves, staff and parents.
Thursday, August 24, 2017
6:30 PM - 8:30 PM
North Kansas City Hospital Pavilion - Burlington Room
2790 Clay Edwards Drive
North Kansas City, MO 64116
Cost: $15.00 includes refreshments, handouts, and 2-hour of approved training 
 
Family Engagement: Birth to Forever

Setting your families up for success is in everyone's best interest. What tools can be used effectively? How do programs establish the groundwork for partnerships in learning? Let's explore together!

Thursday, September 21, 2017

6:30 PM - 8:30 PM

North Kansas City Hospital Pavilion - North Oak Room

2790 Clay Edwards Drive

North Kansas City, MO 64116

Cost: $15.00 includes refreshments, handouts, and 2-hour of approved training

 

To register, please print and send the registration form to:

The Family Conservancy, attn: Leanne Hilligas

444 Minnesota Avenue, Suite 200

Kansas City, KS 66101.

 

Or, call 913-742-4113 with registration information and to register with a credit card. 


Here are our upcoming trainings through December 2017! Online Registration coming soon!

 

Understanding the Whole Child

Understanding how a child learns and views the world is crucial for your success as a caregiver/teacher. Knowing what reasonable expectations are for each child can make your days less stressful, and benefits both you and the children in your care. Learn the basic principles of child development and factors that influence development. We will teach you the milestones for each area of development for birth through age six, and factors that influence development.  Learn why it is important to recognize when children are demonstrating behavior that is not typical for their chronological age.

Tuesday, August 22, 2017, 6:00 PM - 9:00 PM (3.0 Clock Hours)

Excelsior Springs Hospital - Community Room 1

1700 Rainbow Blvd., Excelsior Springs, MO 64024

Cost: $15.00

Register Online Here

Print and Mail Registration Here

 

Understanding the Whole Child

Understanding how a child learns and views the world is crucial for your success as a caregiver/teacher. Knowing what reasonable expectations are for each child can make your days less stressful, and benefits both you and the children in your care. Learn the basic principles of child development and factors that influence development. We will teach you the milestones for each area of development for birth through age six, and factors that influence development.  Learn why it is important to recognize when children are demonstrating behavior that is not typical for their chronological age.

Thursday, September 7, 2017 from 6:00 PM - 9:00 PM (3.0 Clock Hours)

Calhoun R-VIII Early Childhood Center

206 W. 7th Street, Calhoun, MO 65323

Cost: $15.00

Register Online Here

Print and Mail Registration Here

 

Supporting the Development and Well-Being of Infants and Toddlers

How do you affect the healthy brain development of infants and toddlers? This workshop will share the five Rs: how relationships, routines, respect, repetition, and responsive interactions influence a child’s developing brain. Did you know that infants and toddlers are affected by stress too? Learn how you can support the well-being and mental health of these youngest children.

Saturday, September 9, 2017 from 9:30 AM - 11:30 AM (2.0 Clock Hours)

Lee's Summit Medical Center - Arbor Room

2100 SE Blue Parkway, Lee's Summit, MO 64063

Cost: $10.00

Register Online Here

Print and Mail Registration Here

 

Supervision of Children

This training reviews the current State of Missouri licensing requirements for staff to child ratio in various child care settings. Active supervision is reviewed and techniques are presented to assist the early learning professional in providing active supervision at all times. The Six strategies for Active Supervision are reviewed along with a section on child elopement. This course is suitable for family child care as well as programs or centers.

Tuesday, September 19, 2017 from 6:00 PM - 9:00 PM (3.0 Hours)

Holy Cross Lutheran Early Education Center - Fellowship Hall

2003 NE Englewood Road, Kansas City, MO 64117

Cost: $15.00

Register Online Here

Print and Mail Registration Here

 

Keeping Our Children Healthy

Why are the children—and you—sick so much? After this session, you will know what to do to keep children healthier and happier and how to avoid illness yourself. Learn how to prevent and reduce the risk of contagious diseases in child care and early learning programs.  We will teach you to identify common illnesses, practical methods to prevent contracting these illnesses, and universal precautions for preventing the spread of infectious disease.  

Saturday, September 30, 2017 from 9:30 AM - 12:30 PM (3.0 Clock Hours)

East Hills Library - Conference Room

502 N. Woodbine Road, St. Joseph, MO 64506

Cost: $15.00

Register Online Here

Print and  Mail Registration Here

 

Planning Experiences for Children

Ever wonder, what am I supposed to do all day with the children? This session will answer that question by teaching you many approaches to planning and teaching. Imagine the advantages of a classroom where all the children are involved and families are supportive! This workshop will define developmentally appropriate practice and describe how development is fostered by play. You will learn that playing is learning and learning is playing. Discover the difference between child- and teacher-directed activities. We will describe intentional teaching and help you learn how to communicate the benefits of play to families.   

Tuesday, October 3, 2017 from 6:00 PM - 9:00 PM (3.0 Clock Hours)

McQuerry Elementary School

607 S. 3rd Street, Odessa, MO 64076

Cost: $15.00

Register Online Here

Print and Mail Registration Here

 

Preventing the Abuse and Neglect of Infants and Toddlers

Knowing how to recognize and report abuse is important but don’t you also wonder how you, as a child care and early learning professional, can help protect infants and toddlers from abuse and neglect? Through this workshop, you will be presented with a strengths-based approach to partnering with families and protecting children. Prevention begins with knowing what families and program staff can do to relieve daily stressors and encourage communication. You will also leave this session knowing how policies and procedures at child care programs can be designed to protect you from false accusations. 

Thursday, October 5, 2017 from 6:30 PM - 8:30 PM (2.0 Clock Hours)

North Kansas City Hospital Pavilion - Burlington Room

2800 Clay Edwards Drive, North Kansas  City, MO 64116

Cost: $10.00

Register Online Here 

Print and Mail Registration Here

 

Supportive Responses to Troubled Parent-Child Interactions

In their daily work with parents and children, child care professionals have a unique window into families’ strengths and challenges.  This session presents strategies that child care providers can use to support positive parenting and to intervene when providers witness troubled interactions in families.

Thursday, October 26, 2017 from 6:00 PM - 9:00 PM (3.0 Clock Hours)

Tri-City Christian Early Learning Center

430 NE Duncan Road, Blue Springs, MO 64014

Cost: $15.00

Register Online Here

Print and Mail Registration Here

 

Social and Emotional Teaching Strategies

Are you looking for new techniques to build responsibility, confidence and problem-solving skills with children in your child care and early learning program? In this session, we will discuss the importance of providing opportunities for children to understand their own, and others' emotions. You will receive tools to enhance your child care and early learning program while helping children understand and control a wide range of emotions.  

Thursday, November 9, 2017 from 6:00 PM - 9:00 PM (3.0 Clock Hours)

North Kansas City Hospital Pavilion - Prairie View Conference Room

2800 Clay Edwards Drive, North Kansas City, MO 64116

Cost: $15.00

Register Online Here

Print and Mail Registration Here

 

Helping Parents and Providers Understand Temperament

 A child’s temperament influences not only his or her style of interaction but the very way in which he or she understands and experiences the world.  This unit provides child care professionals with an introduction to the concept of temperament and to key developmental traits.

Tuesday, November 14, 2017 from 6:30 PM - 8:30 PM (2.0 Clock Hours)

Wee Rock Learning Center - At Church on the Rock

5110 S. Brookhart Drive, Harrisonville, MO 64701

Cost: $10.00

Register Online Here

Print and Mail Registration Here

 

Promoting Children's Success through Social and Emotional Learning Techniques

Do you want to learn more techniques that support social and emotional development, even when children are displaying challenging behaviors? This module identifies strategies, such as problem solving and games to teach children emotional literacy and emotional regulation. You will see your classroom transform, as you help children identify emotions and teach them positive social skills that foster friendships. In this session you will learn about the third level of the CSEFEL teaching pyramid, which represents Targeted Social Emotional Supports.

Tuesday, December 5, 2017 from 6:00 PM - 9:00 PM (3.0 Clock Hours)

Lee's Summit Medical Center Office Building - Room 208, Elm Room

600 Murray Road, Lee's Summit, MO 64081

Cost: $15.00

Register Online Here

Print and Mail Registration Here

 

Developmentally Appropriate Practices for Infants and Toddlers

Are you delivering high quality infant and toddler care in your classroom, center or family child care home? How do you know? From this workshop, you will learn the importance of developmentally appropriate practices with infants and toddlers and the 10 components related to high quality child care. You will learn how to reinforce the healthy development of infants and toddlers, through consistent routines, primary caregivers and responsive care. After this workshop, you will know what it means to provide high quality, inclusive care for our youngest children.

Thursday, December 7, 2017 from 6:30 PM - 8:30 PM (2.0 Clock Hours)

Holy Cross Lutheran Early Education Center - Fellowship Hall

2003 NE Englewood Road, Kansas City, MO 64117

Cost: $10.00

Register Online Here

Print and Mail Registration 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 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/
 

Early Childhood Fall Symposium

Early Education Fall Symposium TrainingSAVE THE DATE! Our Early Childhood Fall Symposium will be held Saturday, October 21, 2017 at KU Edwards Campus BEST Conference Center in Overland Park. Stay tuned for details and future registration information!

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. 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.

Trainings for Kansas Providers

 


Healthy Child Care & Healthy Families

Johnson and Wyandotte Family Child Care Centers and Child Care Centers-Project Opportunity! 

Child Care Aware of Kansas is working to build relationships between home and child care to increase the consumption of healthy beverages, snacks and meals while creating environments that support physical activity for young children. 

Benefits

  • KDHE Approved in-service training at no cost
  • On-site technical assistance
  • Networking opportunity to be part of a team committed to children's health
  • A $75.00 Stipend
  • Short Term Commitment of 6 months

Click on this flyer for information!

For Additional Information, contact Amy Cochran at 913-742-4188 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


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.

 

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!

 

Online Training

The Early Education Professional Development Department of The Family Conservancy is pleased to offer new online training opportunities to support you in your career development.

Program Mission
To deliver high quality learning opportunities to meet early educators' professional development needs.

eLearning Program

  • Easy to use trainings located on The Family Conservancy website that are convenient for early educators.
  • Courses can be accessed from almost any computer with Internet access - no matter where you are.
  • Courses are CEU approved.
  • College credit may be available*.

*Only available for some courses.

  1. View classes and register
  2. Go to classroom login

 

Available Courses
Currently, we offer the following courses:

  • 120 Hour CDA Credential Training for Family Child Care Providers
  • 120 Hour CDA Credential Training for Child Care Centers
  • 40 Hour Child Care Essentials: A Comprehensive Initial Training for Center-Based Child Care Providers (English or Spanish)
  • 40 Hour Child Care Essentials: A Comprehensive Initial Training for Family Child Care Providers (English or Spanish)
  • 45 Hour CDA Credential Renewal Training
  • 8 Hour Child Abuse Awareness for Center Staff
  • 8 Hour Child Abuse Awareness for Family Child Care
  • 3 Hour Practical Strategies to Guide Children's Behavior
  • 2 Hour Promoting Nutrition & Physical Activity in Child Care
  • 8 Hour Social Emotional Foundations of Learning

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