Strategic Financial Planning: Skills and Implementation

The JW Marriott Houston • Houston, TX




Seats Left: 4
Certification Credits: 20 BCP / 20 IACP

$2,776 Non-Member

Travel and accommodations not included

[$2,360.00 Gold Member]

Registration for workshop has closed

This workshop was much broader than I expected. In a day and a half, I expected to focus mainly on the Strategic Financial Plan. It was incredibly helpful to get a much broader presentation, in addition to spending all of the time we needed on the SFP. There is no question that you are content experts and that is the number one priority. Excellent workshop overall.

Michal Allaire, Chief Financial Officer
The Northwest School, WA

Bring your team and receive a special tuition rate of $1,704 per each additional person. Call 302-656-4944 to register your team members.

Increased cash reserves. Higher enrollment levels. Long-term viability. These are the goals of every school. And they are attainable—if you have the right strategic financial plan. ISM’s proven approach to strategic financial planning will help you experience financial success now while positioning your school nicely for the future—perfect for schools that are concerned with today’s economic difficulties.

Who Should Attend: Board Presidents, Board Members, Heads, Division Heads, and Business Managers

You cover these topics—and more:

"Strategic" vs. "Long-Range" Planning

  • Purposes of each
  • Processes with each
  • Outcomes of each
  • Four necessary characteristics of each

The Nature and Necessity of Strategic Planning

  • ISM's 18 Stability Markers™
  • ISM's 25 strategic variables
  • The relationship of your strategic plan to your strategic financial plan

Roles in Strategic Financial Planning

  • Board
  • Head of School
  • Business Manager

Strategic/Financial Planning: Part One

  • The process
  • Quantifying and "costing" the school you want to be
  • Establishing a six-year expenditure profile

Strategic/Financial Planning: Part Two

  • Determining net tuition costs
  • Determining the six-year net tuition gradient
  • Adjusting the six-year net tuition gradient

Finalizing Your Strategic Financial Plan

  • Preparing the final document
  • Internal review of the final document
  • Board approval

Marketing Your Strategic Financial Plan

  • The Plan: Confidential or public?
  • "Neighborhood visits"
  • Ongoing use: The annual cycle

Further Effects of Your Strategic Financial Plan

  • Effects on Board function
  • Effects on annual tuition setting
  • Effects on your Development Office and annual fund drive

staff photo walker buckalew

Walker Buckalew, Ph.D.

ISM Executive Consultant


Schools benefit specifically from Walker's experience as an ISM consultant, in school and university administration, and in his national research into the factors that make schools successful in retaining and maintaining high academic performance. Since joining ISM in 1989, Walker has developed expertise in Strategic Performance Analyses, Long Range Planning, Board Workshops, and Transition Planning. He has also been instrumental in developing ISM's approach to strategic financial planning. He is an expert in Board structure and responsibilities.

Current Role

Walker is the author and/or editor of ISM's line of books for teachers, including:

  • Twenty Principles for Teaching Excellence:The Teacher's Workbook
  • MFE: Faculty Development and Renewal
  • Teaching Excellence II: A Research-Based Workbook for Teachers

In addition, he co-wrote Coping With Choosing a College, a guide for students, parents, counselors, and teachers.

For more than 20 years, Walker has been involved with research into the areas of renewal, performance, health, and stress. In 1995, he started a process on Meaningful Faculty Evaluation that he offered through a firm of his own. This process became one of ISM's consulting services.

Prior Experience

Walker brings with him 19 years of experience in education, having been a teacher and administrator in public schools, an associate professor of education at St. Lawrence University (NY), and director of both the Kellogg Foundation Behavioral Health Project and the Reynolds Foundation Minority Health Project at the University of North Carolina-Asheville. Before joining ISM, Walker served as Chief Operating Officer, Vice President for Academic Affairs, and President of Cumberland University (TN), where he worked effectively with a 42-member Board.


Walker earned his ME.d. and Ph.D. degrees from the University of Wyoming and his bachelor’s degree from Duke University.



7:15-8 a.m. Breakfast and registration
8–9:45 a.m.: Session I
9:45 - 10 a.m.: Break
10:00 a.m. – 12 noon: Session II
12–1:15 p.m.: Lunch with ISM
1:15–3 p.m.: Session III
3–3:15: Break
3:15–4:30 p.m.: Session IV


7:15-8 a.m. Breakfast
8–9:45 a.m.: Session V
9:45–10:00 a.m.: Break
10:00 a.m. – 12 noon: Session V

Workshop Location
The JW Marriott Houston
3150 Westheimer Road
Houston, TX 77056

Group hotel reservation rate of $129 is available until December 10, 2017. Subject to availability. Please wait until the workshop status is 'confirmed' before making your travel and hotel arrangements.

The JW Marriott Houston Galleria is offering a special $129/standard view or $139/uptown view for ISM attendees. For reservations, call 713-961-1500

This hotel is a 9-minute walk from shopping at the Galleria and a 6.5-mile drive from the Museum of Fine Arts.

The modern rooms have 42-inch flat-screen TVs, desks and coffeemakers. WiFi is available (fee). Some rooms have access to a concierge lounge with free continental breakfast and evening appetizers. Suites add separate living areas.

The property offers a bar and restaurant serving regional cuisine, as well as a fitness center and an indoor and outdoor pool. Other amenities include free WiFi in the lobby and a business center.

Confirmation Policy

We will correspond with you through e-mail as soon as your workshop is confirmed, no later than two weeks prior to its beginning. Occasionally, we may be forced to cancel an unconfirmed, scheduled workshop due to insufficient registration. So we ask that you do not make non-refundable travel arrangements until you receive notice that your workshop is confirmed. (ISM will not be responsible for any change/cancellation charges assessed by your airline or travel agent.)

Cancellation Policy

If circumstances change and you cannot attend the workshop, you must confirm your cancellation in writing via fax (302-656-0647) or email ( If you do so at least 10 business days prior to the start of the workshop, you can request a full refund of monies paid. Thereafter, but prior to the first day of the course, we will refund you all but $600. If you do not cancel in writing prior to the start date of the course, you will forfeit the entire workshop fee. You also have the option of applying your monies paid to another workshop within a year of the cancelled one. If you want to exercise this option, you must inform us in writing with your request to cancel. If you do not so, we will automatically keep the $600 cancellation fee.

If you enroll using Consortium Credits, and cancel your attendance in writing at least 10 days prior to the start date of the workshop, all Credits will be returned to your school. Thereafter, but prior to the first day of the course, if you cancel, all but two of the Credits will be returned to your school. (You have the option of buying back those two Credits for $600.)

If you do not cancel in writing prior to the start date of the course, your school loses all the Consortium Credits used for payment.

Please note that non-payment of tuition does not constitute a cancellation. *We DO NOT accept enrollments from consultants.

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