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Fiscal Basics

Online • On-Demand • 3 PD Hrs

This course introduces financial basics that everyone in Head Start needs to know. Participants will learn where Head Start funds come from, how they can be used, and the responsibilities staff and governing bodies have as stewards of federal dollars.


Fiscal management can be complex and challenging. Help set your organization up for success. Retired Office of Head Start Senior Advisor Belinda Rinker, JD, and her business- and life-partner Alan Baquet, PhD, bring decades of experience to this course and introduce learners to the basics that everyone in Head Start needs to know about money.

Course authors Belinda Rinker, JD and Alan Baquet, Ph.D. discuss with former Deputy Director of Office of Head Start Ann Linehan about the importance of fiscal literacy in Head Start.

Topics include: Head Start funding sources; common budget costs; non-federal matching; general fiscal requirements; fiscal management resources; and more! Participants can access the course anytime, anywhere they have internet access, and complete the work at their own pace.

Course Level: Beginner

Requirements/Prerequisites: None

Target Audience: Instruction and Effective Practice, Leadership and Management, Parents and Families, Program Operations, Support Services

Course Meeting Times: None

Completion Timeline/Duration: Three hours

Head Start Alignment: Head Start Program Performance Standards, Part 1303 - Financial and Administrative Requirements, Subpart A: Financial Requirements

Course Outline

Course Authors

Belinda Rinker, JD

Belinda Rinker, JD

Belinda Rinker, JD, an attorney and managing member of SRCS, has over 30 years of experience working with grant-funded and nonprofit organizations. She recently retired from her position as a senior policy analyst at the national Office of Head Start in Washington, D.C., where she led fiscal, facilities, and disaster recovery initiatives. During her Head Start career, she gained hands-on experience in program operations and fiscal management. Belinda has extensive knowledge of the many governance and fiscal requirements that apply to federal awards and has provided training and compliance assistance at the grantee, state, and national level.

Alan Baquet, Ph.D.

Alan Baquet, Ph.D.

Alan Baquet, PhD, an economist and member of SRCS, has a robust background in educational, nonprofit, and private industry settings. He is nationally recognized for his research and teaching accomplishments. He successfully applied for and managed grant awards throughout his university career. He has expertise in supporting the operation of complex organizations, having served as a department head and associate vice chancellor in educational settings. Alan is certified in both Life Coaching and Appreciative Inquiry, critical skills that enhance his ability to facilitate strategic planning and organizational change initiatives.

What are learners saying...

"This training should be viewed by all Head Start and Early Head Staff upon hire because it explains where funding comes from, who can apply for a grant, and how fiscal accountability is structured by the Office Of Head Start."

"The Fiscal Basics course provided critical information about Head Start funding and requirements in a way that was easy to understand and apply."

"I believe all fiscal personnel who are new to working with Head Start and EHS funds should attend this session, as part of an orientation piece before beginning their job. I was thrown in the deep end and started treading, having never worked with Head Start before, let alone fiscally. I would have loved to hear this information two years ago!"

"This is perfect for new professionals in the Head Start world who might feel lost with no place to start."

"What a great resource to revisit the basic fiscal responsibilities of grantees. This will be very helpful as we prepare for our Focus Area 2 review."

Registration Rates

Regular Rate: $195

NHSA Member Rate: $90

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  • Online, Self-paced Coursework
  • 3 Hours of Course Material
  • Video Content
  • 3 Months of Access to Online Course
  • Discussion Forums
  • Digital Badge
  • Certificate of Completion
  • 24/7 Access to Transcript

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