Creating a Budget for Your Early Childhood Organization
In the Unit 1 Journal, you created a portrait of your hypothetical (or actual) early childhood organization. In the Unit 2 Journal, you created your necessary staffing guide and associated salaries. In this assignment, you will continue the budget development process by computing what is known as the “full cost of care”. You will use the Unit 3 Assignment – Budget Templatespreadsheet as well as the Unit 3 Assignment – Planning Template document (both also located in Course Documents) as part of this assignment. Be sure to submit both the spreadsheet AND the document.
As you know, a “break even” budget is one where you spend as much as you collect in revenue, but ideally, your budget will leave you with at least a small surplus each month that can be accumulated over time, but sometimes this takes multiple attempts at creating your budget while adjusting figures such as salaries, tuition rate, and expenses. You may also decide to create several versions of your budget to play around with your revenue and expenses to select the ideal version. Chapter 4 in your textbook, The Business of Child Care, provides examples of this.
Part 1: Creating a Budget
Using the information you collected from Unit 1 and Unit 2, develop a budget for your hypothetical (or actual) early childhood program. Begin by providing a portrait of your program such as the one you created in the Unit 1 Journal. Be sure to provide the name of your organization (whether or not it is a non-profit), the ages served, number of children in each class, and a brief statement of your program’s mission or values.
Calculate your annual budget based on the enrollment and staffing patterns that you determined in Unit 2. Use the spreadsheet template. You may have to create multiple versions of your spreadsheet to balance your budget. Be sure to create a small surplus for your budget. After creating your budget, calculate the average monthly budget and include that on your budget next to your annual revenue/expenses. Be sure to include all versions of your budget when submitting this assignment.
Part 2: Planning a Budget
After your monthly budget has been created, discuss how it will be used as a planning tool for future budgets and how it can help track revenue/expenses month-to-month and identify variances (differences from your planned budget). Use the document template. How will this help you to plan for the following months and prioritize your necessary expenses to reach your goals? How can you turn a large deficit into a not-so-large deficit using cost savings? How will this ensure a quality program? Please refer to Chapter 5 in your textbook, The Business of Child Care.
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