The National Institute of Standards and Technology's (NIST) Baldrige National Quality Program (BNQP) has announced that four state quality programs will receive funding for the development of Baldrige-based and performance excellence curricula targeted at education or manufacturing organizations. The awards, totaling $160,000, advance one of the BNQP's strategic priorities—supporting the Baldrige-based state and local quality programs.
MassExcellence (Massachusetts), the Tennessee Center for Performance Excellence, the Vermont Council for Quality and the Washington State Quality Award will develop the new curricula. The Massachusetts and Tennessee recipients will focus their performance excellence outreach on manufacturing firms while the ones in Vermont and Washington will direct their efforts toward educational institutions. Eight proposals for curriculum development were submitted in a competition for the funds; the four organizations receiving awards were selected based on evaluations done by the Alliance for Performance Excellence, a nonprofit network of state and local Baldrige-based award programs.
Among the plans for the four curricula are: course modules on leadership, communication and strategic planning; Web-based video lessons with self-paced learning; protocols for implementing the Baldrige Criteria; "train the trainer" programs; and descriptions of real-life case studies and best practices. The new curricula are expected to be in place by Dec. 31, 2010. Although they are being created primarily for the 40 state and local quality programs now in existence, the curricula will be made available by the BNQP to any group wishing to make use of them.
The one-time awards will be managed by a contractor, Key Teknowledgy Corp.