As the 2022-23 program year approaches, Head Start and Early Head Start programs must be ready to continue their commitment to children and families. The impact of COVID on programs is clear. Bold Leadership is the key to revitalizing your staff and renewing your own commitment to them, your children, and their families. This special series from The Academy at NHSA brings new voices, ideas, and energy to Head Start and Early Head Start leaders who are ready to start the new year with gusto!


Burning Up Before Burning Out: Daring to Go From Fear to Freedom

Thursday, July 14, 2022 from 2:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m. ET

Our everyday lives are filled with rules. We are aware of some rules; some, we abide by without knowing how much they exhaust us—leading to burnout. During this session, presented by Executive Director of Rural Utah Child Development Keri Allred, you will identify some of the rules that are tiring you and will have the chance to create a new way of living that can better sustain you in the work you do. These new rules are your own and they are waiting to be written!

bold leadership

How Bold Leadership Leads to Bold Partnerships

Thursday, July 28, 2022 from 2:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m. ET

Successful Head Start programs hinge on successful collaboration and partnerships in the communities they serve. Paula Margraf, retired Head Start Director from Community Services for Children in Allentown, PA, spent her career building partnerships and watching those partnerships inspire phenomenal outcomes for her program’s children and families. Come grab some perspective from the ground and leave with some new ways you can approach building long lasting, effective partnerships in your community.

Leading in Challenging Times

Leading In Challenging Times

Thursday, August 4, 2022 from 2:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m. ET

To borrow a phrase from the military, we live in a VUCA World, a volatile, uncertain, complex, and ambiguous world. Such a world requires agility to quickly respond to opportunities and challenges. Rigid and siloed organizations of the past do not do well in a VUCA environment. Leadership needs to understand the strategies and approaches to successfully lead in today’s world. In this session, Ray McNulty will describe the changes we need to overcome and the types of performance and strategic systems needed to survive and thrive in a VUCA world.

Head Start on Housing

A Head Start on Housing for America’s Families

Thursday, August 11, 2022 from 2:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m. ET

Like all states, Connecticut’s Head Start and Early Head Start programs are required to aggressively seek out and prioritize homeless children for enrollment so that children can thrive in the classroom despite their family’s challenges. Although nearly 4 percent of enrolled children are precariously housed, agencies rarely have resources to address housing problems.

The National Center for Housing and Child Welfare (NCHCW) worked with the Connecticut Office of Early Childhood’s Head Start State Collaboration Office to attack these housing problems head-on. Beginning in the fall of 2021, NCHCW began convening state leaders to establish a partnership between the Connecticut Department of Housing (DOH) and the Office of Early Childhood (OEC) to gain access to permanent housing subsidies and roll-out a “Head Start on Housing” landlord recruitment campaign in February 2022. This pilot program armed three agencies within Connecticut’s sophisticated network of Head Start and Early Head Start programs with immediate access to the housing resources they needed to help families escape homelessness. On June 13, 2022, Gov. Lamont announced a statewide expansion of this “on demand” Housing Choice Voucher program for Head Start households. This presentation will offer insight on how this extraordinary pilot program was established and offer tips on how to bring this innovation to your state

Bold Leadership Series: Addressing Burnout

On July 14, Executive Director of Rural Utah Child Development Keri Newman Allred will join NHSA to identify—and embrace—burnout.


Macy Jones, Bold and Decisive Leader in Times of Crisis

Head Start Director Macy Jone's community was hit hard by COVID-19. She hired a full-time licensed clinician to provide support.


Preparation and Collaboration Serve Families in Crisis

Deputy Director of Duval Head Start/Early Head Start in Florida Maria McNair went a long way to help families adjust to virtual programming.


Facing Collective Trauma, Prioritizing Protective Factors

As the pandemic hit, Anat Weisenfreund focused on supporting and empowering staff and families as they were engulfed in collective trauma.


Turning Necessity into Opportunity

Laure Hopper turned necessity into opportunity by creating new nature-based play spaces and maintaining family and staff connection.