Extend your PHSA Conference experience by attending our pre-conference session!

Each year the PHSA Conference Planning Committee organizes a  pre-conference session. The goal of a pre-conference session is to provide attendees with a longer, more in-depth opportunity to explore content beyond what can be done in a typical 1.5 or 3 hour conference workshop. Pre-conference sessions will take place two days before the opening day of our Annual Conference at the same location and target subject matter  that the PA Head Start/Early Head Start community has indicated is particularly relevant to their work.


2020 Pre-Conference Sessions

April 27-28

Region III Office of Head Start Home Visiting Institute

This event is presented by National Center of Early Childhood Development, Teach and Learning & Region III OHS Training and Technical Assistance Network.

Audience: Home Based Visitors, Supervisors, and Coaches

This year we are pleased to offer two separate tracks, English and Spanish.  For more information on the agenda of this event, please click here.

Please note the Act 48 credit will be available to the attendees. 

April 28

Pre-Conference Session: Mental Health First Aid

Presented by Lisa Basci, MA, LPC

Audience: Appropriate for every position within Head Start and Early Head Start Programs.

Mental Health First Aid certification, which must be renewed every three years, provides trainees with:

  • Recognize the potential risk factors and warning signs for a range of mental health problems, including depression, anxiety/trauma, psychosis and psychotic disorders, eating disorders, substance use disorders and self-injury.

  • Apply a 5-step action plan encompassing the skills, resources and knowledge to assess the situation, select and implement appropriate interventions, and help the individual in crisis connect with appropriate professional care

  • Develop an understanding of the prevalence of various mental health disorders in the U.S. and the need for reduced stigma in their communities

  • Develop knowledge of the appropriate professional, peer, social and self-help resources available to help someone with a mental health problem treat and manage the problem and achieve recovery

Attendees who complete the 8-hour program become certified Mental Health First Aiders.

You can view the topics that will be discussed in each session here.

Leading by Exemplar: Building Leaders’ Capacity to Use Data for Continuous Improvement

Presented by: Ashley LiBetti, Associate Partner with Bellwether Education Partners

Audience: Administrators and Leaders

  • Session Description: In March 2019, Bellwether Education Partners published “Leading by Exemplar: Case Studies of Exemplary Head Start Programs,” a multi-year study of five Head Start programs with evidence of producing significant learning gains for children. Participants will explore the design and practices of these five programs; analyze the exemplars’ practices with an eye toward what would be most helpful or useful in their programs; and apply their new knowledge to their program’s context and develop concrete action plans for improving their internal data utilization and continuous improvement processes.

  • Objectives:

    • Demonstrate understanding of exemplar programs’ design and practices

    • Identify key practices and design choices that contributed to program success

    • Evaluate exemplar program practices for relevance and applicability in local program context and apply those practices to local program context

    • Formulate an action plan for adapting or adopting an exemplary program’s practice or strategy to local program context

Please visit the Events page to register for any of the above sessions!