Contracting Academy Webinar Series

Head Start agencies rely on countless contractors and subrecipients to help them fulfill grant responsibilities.  Yet many Head Start agencies underestimate the importance of entering into well-drafted written agreements with contractors and subrecipients. 

In fact, relationships with contractors or subrecipients can pose significant risk to agencies.  Poorly drafted contracts can create contentious business relationships, increase an agency’s chance of becoming involved in costly litigation, and subject an agency to a deficiency or non-compliance finding on monitoring reviews. 

At FTLF, we’ve counseled numerous Head Start agencies that had unwittingly entered poorly-drafted contracts.  We have seen a need in the field for high-quality training on negotiating, drafting, reviewing and monitoring contracts.  To address this need, we created a five-part webinar series designed to provide a strong foundation in contracting – from procurement and pre-contract planning to drafting, reviewing, and monitoring contracts.

Our five-part webinar series is tailored to Head Start, and will emphasize the special requirements of federal grantees and Head Start agencies.  We’ve designed the training to include a mix of instruction and hands-on exercises.  Participants will complete homework assignments and receive individual feedback.  At the end of the series, participants will feel confident negotiating, drafting, reviewing and monitoring contracts.  .

*All Webinars will start at 3:00 PM EST and last for approximately 1.5 hrs

  1. Thursday, October 5: Pre-Contract Planning 
  2. Thursday, October 12: Anatomy of a Contract: Part I
  3. Thursday, October 19: Anatomy of a Contract: Part II
  4. Thursday, October 26: Contracting Rules for Federal Grantees
  5. Thursday, November 2: Monitoring Contracts:  A Grantee’s Work is Never Done
Course summary
Course opens: 
Course expires: 
Event starts: 
11/02/2017 - 3:00pm
Event ends: 
11/02/2017 - 4:30pm

WEBINAR #1: Pre-Contract Planning

DATE: October 5, 2017

SPEAKER: Alexandra Rosenblatt

This webinar will focus on two important pre-contract topics:  procurement and negotiation.  Head Start agencies must comply with certain procurement standards when contracting for property and services. We will discuss these standards, focusing on the requirement for obtaining competition, the rules applicable to sole source procurements, and ways to efficiently operationalize these requirements in day to day procurement activities.

We will also discuss negotiation strategies and skills.  Participants will participate in a negotiation exercise designed to provide real-world experience negotiating contracts.

Homework:  Negotiation Exercise.  Participants will negotiate contract terms with a fellow participant.  Each participant will receive top-secret non-negotiable terms and will attempt to secure those terms in the contract.

WEBINARS #2 & 3: Anatomy of A Contract

DATE: October 12, 2017 & October 19, 2017

SPEAKER:  Alexandra Rosenblatt

These two webinars will walk through the essential elements and terms of any contract.  We’ll discuss types of contracts, key contract provisions, and strategies for clear drafting.  We’ll dissect so-called “boiler-plate provisions” – those provisions that you often see in contracts, but have no idea what they mean.  At the end of these webinars, participants will have a solid foundation for drafting and reviewing important contracts.

Homework:  Contract Exercise.  Participants will draft a contract from start to finish and receive individualized feedback.

WEBINAR #4: Contracting Rules for Federal Grantees

DATE: October 26, 2017

SPEAKER: Nicole Bacon

The Uniform Guidance requires federal grantees to include certain terms in contracts with vendors and subrecipients.  This webinar will identify these special terms and give you advice on drafting them and ensuring that they are included in your written agreements.

Homework:  Quiz on special contract terms.

WEBINAR #5: Monitoring Contracts:  A Grantee’s Work is Never Done

DATE: November 2, 2017

SPEAKER: Edward T. Waters

Grantees are responsible for monitoring vendors and subrecipients to ensure that their work satisfies the requirements of the grant.  Learn how to successfully monitor your partners to ensure success on reviews.

Edward T. Waters

Edward “Ted” Waters serves as the  Managing Partner of the firm since 2003, and a member of the Health Law and Federal Grants practices since 1992. Ted focuses his practice on helping organizations to solve problems, often in crisis situations. A national authority in the area of federal grants, particularly in the health and community service spheres, he advises clients on all aspects of program requirements, including issues such as cost-based reimbursement, governance and the never-ending list of grant administration matters. Ted’s expertise in financial, cost reporting, reimbursement, and administrative issues is widely recognized, and illustrated by his selection as a 2014 and 2015 Washington, D.C. Super Lawyer in health care. Ted routinely handles challenging issues for clients such as government audits, internal investigations, and litigation, deftly guiding them to a resolution. His priority is to help each organization carry out its mission and ensure that legal challenges do not distract from that focus. From his more than a decade of experience running the firm, Ted understands acutely the challenges of keeping an organization running, and offers practical, down-to-earth counsel to support organizational leaders in doing just that. [Full Bio]

Alexandra Rosenblatt

Alexandra Rosenblatt is a Senior Associate with the firm in the Federal Grants and Health Law practice groups.  In her tenure at FTLF, Alexandra has worked on a wide variety of issues affecting Federally Qualified Health Centers, Head Start programs, and state and local governments.  In addition, Alexandra conducts frequent trainings for federal grantees. Her trainings focus on privacy, third party agreements, and risk management. Prior to joining Feldesman Tucker Leifer Fidell LLP, Alexandra was a litigation associate with firms in Colorado and Hawaii. [Full Bio]

Nicole Bacon

Nicole Bacon is a Partner in the firm’s Federal Grants, Litigation, and Health Law practice groups. Nicole offers her clients specialized guidance in compliance with federal grant law including specific programmatic requirements as well as the Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles and Audit Requirements of Federal Awards. Nicole represents a variety of community-based organizations, before State and Federal courts as well as administrative bodies. Nicole leads the firms Head Start education and training efforts, by designing seminars and meetings both in-person and via webinar on a number of grants-related topics.  Nicole ensures that participants are up-to-date on federal regulations, management and financial requirements to protect their grants. [Full Bio]

Certificates of Attendance are available for all webinars (both live and recorded) for the registered attendee upon completion of the webinar. 
A blank Certificate of Attendance will be available for organizations to issue to attendees that viewed the webinar (either live or on-demand).  Due to the online nature of the training course, Feldesman Tucker Leifer Fidell LLP does not certify that the attendee actually viewed the course.  A supervisor at the organization should sign the certificate, and therefore, certifies that the attendee viewed the course.
Attendance record forms are available for all webinars (live and on-demand) and can be utilized to record the attendance of numerous staff members for internal purposes.  

Available Credit

Accreditation Period

Course opens: 
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Included in the Contracting Academy:

  • 5 live webinars
  • Access to the recorded webinars for 60 days after the live webinar has concluded.  
  • Review of all homework exercises
An unlimited number of participants can experience a live or recorded webinar by broadcasting it on a projection screen and watching it together. A single login can gain access to the webinar and be issued a certificate.  The record of attendance form can be accessed under the certificate link within the activity.  For more information on live and recorded webinars, please refer to our FAQ section.  

Methods of payment for the Contracting Academy include Credit Card, Check and Purchase Order.  However, if you have selected a payment option other than Credit Card within three hours prior to the first webinar, please send an email to to ensure access is granted.
Please note: All registrations made within 3 hours of the first webinar must be completed using a credit card.


  • No refunds for no-shows; however if requested, registrant can have access to the recorded version of the webinar.
  • FTLF will issue a full refund for cancellations within at least one week prior to the first webinar.  
  • FTLF can accommodate changing the name on a registration to someone else within your organization up to 24 hours prior to the webinar start time.
  • Cancellation requests made after the webinar will be reviewed on a case by case basis.

Required Hardware/software

Google Chrome and Mozilla Firefox are the preferred browsers.