Technical Assistance

Develop expertise. The McCormick Center works with individuals, organizations, and state agencies to develop informed and experienced trainers, coaches, mentors, technical assistance specialists, and organizational consultants who are interested in supporting the whole leadership development of early childhood administrators.

The Director’s Toolbox Management Series, Training-for-Trainers

The Director’s Toolbox Management Series, Training-for-Trainers

The McCormick Center for Early Childhood Leadership works with organizations and state agencies to support the development of trainers on early childhood leadership content. The Director’s Toolbox Management series includes seven books and Trainer’s Guides on important and timely topics related to early childhood program administration. The McCormick Center offers a full-day training on each book. Convene a group of trainers to learn the content of the Director’s Toolbox Trainer’s Guides and unique delivery techniques. The trainers can learn the content by observing and participating in training sessions with directors and debriefing afterwards or can learn the content as an exclusive group.

Choose from several options:

  • Entire Series. Trainers receive training on all topics from the Director’s Toolbox Series. The topics are presented consecutively over an extended period of time. For example, several months to over a year. During the interim trainers and/or directors can work with a facilitator on your staff on concepts learned and prepare for upcoming topics. A social media platform can be used to share resources, ask questions, network, and support one another. Pre- and post-assessments can be used to gather data. A half-day debriefing session is conducted with the trainers for each book in the series. For an example of how the McCormick Center conducts Taking Charge of Change, its leadership academy based on this model visit
  • Modified Series. Trainers receive training on some of the topics from the Director’s Toolbox Series. The topics may be presented consecutively over an extended period of time.  A half-day debriefing session is conducted with the trainers for each book in the series.

The maximum group size for trainers is 30. If you want to include directors in the training day with the trainers the maximum is 80 participants (so if you have 30 trainers attending you could invite up to 50 administrators to attend).

Director’s Toolbox Series of books and trainer’s guides include:

  • From the Inside Out: The Power of Reflection and Self-Awareness,
  • Leadership in Action: How Effective Directors Get Things Done,
  • A Great Place to Work: Creating a Healthy Organizational Work Climate,
  • The Right Fit: Recruiting, Selecting, and Orienting Staff,
  • Making the Most of Meetings: A Practical Guide,
  • Circle of Influence: Implementing Shared Decision Making and Participative Management, and
  • Inspiring Peak Performance: Competence, Commitment, and Collaboration.


Interested in learning more? Watch this recording of our informational webinar.

Presentations and Workshops

Presentations and Workshops

Focus your coaching and mentoring skills. These professional learning experiences will keep you on top of the latest research, abreast of best practices, and innovative in your delivery techniques. Sample topics include:

  • Supporting Directors as the Gatekeepers to Quality
  • Saying It in Writing: Helping Directors Improve and Organize Documentation
  • PAS Reliability Training
  • BAS Reliability Training
  • Promoting Excellence in Family Child Care
  • The Next Step: How to Help Administrators and Staff Interpret ECWES Results and Move Forward
  • Not All Directors Are the Same: Tailoring Coaching Based on Director Developmental Stage

Bring Us to You

Transformative TA - Home-based Providers

BAS Transformative TA Institute

Strategies and Tools for Supporting Providers with The Business Administration Scale for Family Child Care (BAS)


Please contact us at for more information and tailored trainings.

  • Critical Components of Technical Assistance for Family Child Care 
    Knowing where to begin and what steps to follow when helping family child care providers improve their business and professional practices can be challenging, yet we know family child care programs cannot be sustained without these practices in place. This session will provide an introduction to technical assistance roles, examine the unique features of family child care, explain the importance of individualizing TA to meet the needs of providers, demonstrate how TA can support program sustainability and provider longevity, identify the components of transformational TA, and explore the six steps in the coaching process. 
  • Key Concepts for Coaching with the BAS
    Understanding how to conduct a formal BAS assessment and knowing how to use the BAS for technical assistance require different skill sets. This session will provide a brief overview of the BAS and will focus on key concepts for those in technical assistance roles. Strategies for addressing provider concerns, explaining indicators of quality and research design aspects, and supporting providers in decision-making will be highlighted. This session will set the tone for providing a deep dive into the following BAS topic areas: fiscal management and recordkeeping, contracts, handbooks and risk management plans, and family partnership and engagement. 
  • Put It In Writing: What Belongs in a Family Child Care Contract and Handbook
    Contracts and handbooks are two of the most important documents a family child care provider can have; however, providers often struggle with creating and organizing these documents. Using best practices from the BAS as a guide, this session provides the fundamental elements of each document and discusses strategies for coaching providers in creating, updating, and implementing important program policies. Participants will learn the key elements of contracts and handbooks and how to support providers as they organize each document in a way that will protect their business and help bridge communication between them and the families they serve. 
  • Accidents Happen, Why Risk It?
    The uniqueness of family child care offers many rewards; unfortunately, caring for children in the home also comes with many risks. Having a solid risk management plan in place is one of the best ways for a provider to protect their business and keep the children and families they serve safe. In this session, participants will be introduced to some of the major risks providers face when operating a family child care program in the home and will explore policies and procedures to help them reduce and mitigate those risks. Using the BAS as a guide, participants will learn strategies for assisting providers in risk assessment and the development of a comprehensive risk management plan. 
  • Making Dollars and Sense, Part 1
    One of the most critical, but often disliked, parts of running a successful family child care program is having sound fiscal management practices in place. Lack of skill and discomfort in this area can have a devastating effect on the success of the family child care business. Further, coaches often struggle when trying to help providers with financial tasks such as creating a budget, guiding them on recordkeeping needs, and understanding and claiming the appropriate tax deductions associated with the business use of the home. This session includes reflections on personal and emotional relationships with money, an introduction to financial literacy, an overview of money management, and hands-on practice analyzing family child care budgets. Using best practices from the BAS as a guide, participants will learn how to support providers by improving the financial health and sustainability of their businesses. 
  • Making Dollars and Sense, Part 2
    Building on the previous session, Part 2 of Making Dollars and Sense involves a deep dive into the connection between recordkeeping and tax benefits of family child care. Participants will explore the rationale and methods for tracking finances, food, and hours. Further, participants will learn about the components of, calculation, and application of Time-Space Percentage for tax deductions—arguably one of the most important numbers for a family child care program. 
Transformative TA - Center Directors

PAS-3 Transformative TA Institute

Strategies and Tools for Supporting Providers with The Program Administration Scale (PAS-3)


Please contact us at for more information and tailored trainings.

  • Widening The Lens: An Introduction to the Program Administrations Scale-3
    Assessment of early childhood program quality is generally associated with indicators of the classroom learning environment. Little attention has been given to the quality of overall administration of the program. The session will provide a rationale for viewing quality from a broader perspective. Participants will be introduced to the Program Administration Scale (PAS), 3rd edition which measures the quality of management and leadership practices in a program. Participants will learn how to score the instrument as well as strategies for using the tool as a resource for improving administrative practices. Examples of how center directors can use the PAS to enhance program effectiveness will be presented. Participants will also learn how to incorporate the tool into action plans.

  • Can You Hear Me Now? Improving Communication with the PAS and BPA
    Frustrations arise when program staff feel unseen and unheard. A dedicated focus on personal communication styles, internal communication habits, and strengths-based development work together to ease frustrations and improve relationships. Participants will learn strategies to reflect on their own communication preference and behaviors and concrete ways to incorporate more strength-based practices into the programs they lead.
  • Dancing with Data: Using Numbers to Inform Your Next Steps
    You can’t improve what you don’t measure. Continuous quality improvement involves data collection, decision making, and reflective change. But making sense of data can sometimes be overwhelming.  Participants will explore a variety of formal and informal evaluation tools, discuss how to use data to make data-informed decisions for improvement, and how to work with staff to create lasting change.

We frequently partner with professional development projects and statewide quality initiatives around the country. We work with you to determine a training experience to best meet the needs of your unique program or project. Some of our most popular tailored training topics include:

  • Scale Trainings on the Program Administration Scale (PAS) including:
    • Leading the Way to Quality: The Director’s Role
    • Supporting Directors as the Gatekeepers of Quality: The Technical Assistance Specialist’s Role
    • Widening the Lens: Looking at Quality from an Administration Perspective
    • PAS Reliability Training
  • Scale Trainings on the Business Administration Scale for Family Child Care (BAS) including:
    • Catching on to the BAS: The Power of the Provider
    • More Than a Nurturing Heart: Looking at Quality from a Business Administration Perspective
    • Promoting Excellence in Family Child Care: The Technical Assistance Specialist’s Role
    • BAS Reliability Training
  • PAS and BAS Item-related workshops including:
    • Advocacy and Engagement: Communicating the Value of Our Work  (BAS Items 8 & 9)
    • Accidents Happen, Why Risk It? Improving Your Risk Management Plan (BAS Item 6; PAS Item 8)
    • Authentic Engagement: Building True Partnerships With Families (BAS Item 8 & PAS Items 17 & 18)
    • Borientation? How to Keep Orientation From Being a Real Snooze (PAS Item 1)
    • Communication is a Two-Way Street: Creating and Maintaining Family Partnerships (BAS Items 7 & 8; PAS Items 17 & 18)
    • Making Sense and Dollars: Recordkeeping and Fiscal Management (BAS Items 4 & 5)
    • Marketing with a Message: Communicating the Value of Child Care (BAS Item 9; PAS Item 9)
    • Put it in Writing: Knowing What Belongs in Your Contract, Handbook, and Risk Management Plan (BAS Items 2, 6, & 7)

Need more focused attention?

The McCormick Center offers a variety of consultation options:

  • We recalibrate reliability with state anchors of the Program Administration Scale (PAS) and Business Administration Scale for Family Child Care (BAS).
  • We assist in analyzing reports from the PAS, BAS, and Early Childhood Work Environment Survey (ECWES), providing insights for data-based decision-making.
  • We provide insights and suggestions to states that are embedding the PAS and BAS into their quality rating and improvement systems (QRIS).

Contact Us

Apply as an individual.

Dive deep into the content of the Director’s Toolbox Management Series. Subscribe to our email list to be notified when applications for this initiative are being accepted again. Applications for this initiative are typically open from March through May.


Director's Toolbox Management Series at a Glance


Books and Trainer's Guides included in this series


Training-for-Trainers sessions conducted in four states to date


trainers from around the country have participated in this initiative to date

Upcoming Presentations

Connect with us at a conference near you. We often present at national conferences, including conferences hosted by NAEYC, NAFCC, and BUILD.


Presentations & Workshops at a Glance


Early childhood leaders reached through conference presentations by our experts


Times in 2017 our experts presented sessions or participated in panel discussions at conferences