OAPT C O N F E R E N C E
31 May - 2 June 2007
SCO

Funding

How to Get Professional Development Funds
to Come to the OAPT Conferences

 

Know the Rules

Know the rules of your board that cover your attendance at conferences and other professional development activities outside the school, in particular the rules that describe the expenses that may be claimed. These may include supply teachers, registration, travel, accommodation, and meals.

  
Things to Remember

1. You may have to access more than one source of funds. For example: The school may pay for registration while the union may pay for the supply teacher, travel, and accommodation.

2. Know the rules -- if you must hand in receipts, do so. Paper trails are the rule of the day. Some boards require receipts for everything while others require them for some expenses but not others, using a per diem rate for food for example.

3. Submit your application for funds early, because other members of your department may also be going to conferences, so that negotiation may be needed.

The goodwill of your colleagues can become stretched fairly thin by the end of May. "On-calls" and period substitution can strain a department. Be careful of trade-offs - you may contract for a role you wold prefer not to play.

  
Principal's Funds

Many of the larger boards have allotted certain specific funds directly to the school in the hands of the principal for individual teacher professional development. Talk to your principal and discuss the conditions for accessing the funds. Some of the conditions will be unique to your school and it may be focused money.

Funds for Subject Areas

There may be certain funds directed to specific subject areas. Contact the science coordinator or consultant to get details. There may be a competition between those who wish to attend STAO rather than OAPT, so you should get your name in early before all the money is used for a competing event.

Professional Development Funds

Professional development funds have been set aside by various organizations for use by teachers. OSSTF has many dollars for professional development that are not spent each year. Ask your union representative how to access these funds for this conference. Here is a small list of funding sources you might be able to access:

  • OSSTF/FEESO
  • Ontario Teachers Federation
  • Canadian Congress for Learning Opportunities
  • Canadian Federation of Students
  • Elementary Teachersí Federation of Ontario (ETFO)
  • Ontario English Catholic Teachers' Association (OECTA)
Special Project Funds

There are funds set aside in each Board of Education for special projects. In those special projects professional development money is included. If you could organize a crossover of information from this conference to be utilized by your Board and be able to write it up in the form of a proposal you may be able to access these funds for this conference. It is important that you fulfill the conditions of the special project that you are proposing, so don't go overboard.

Superintendent's Funds

There are funds that are in the hands of Superintendent in those school boards that have a family of schools system. This money can be accessed by directly petitioning the appropriate Superintendent.

Join a Board Committee

Getting onto a committee at the board level (like the board safety committee) may gain you access to special funds that are directed to these specific committees.

Example 1: Ottawa Carlton District School Board

Our OSSTF branch has $150 per teacher (well not really if everyone used it). You have to ask for it in advance. No guarantees but I think theoretically if you ask for it and say itís for a conference in May then they should put that money aside for you. You may only be able to use it for certain expenses like registration, accommodation etc.


Example 2: York Region District School Board
  1. Apply to OSSTF as early as possible for funds available.
  2. Discuss with the head your desire to attend the OAPT conference in May - seek approval.
  3. Do the same with the Principal or Vice-Principal as dictated by your school.
  4. Fill out the form provided and submit it to the person who gave it to you for fund approval.
  5. ONLY the conference fees will be reimbursed.
  6. Keep all original receipts and send them in with the approval form to the board within two weeks of the conference.
  7. Do same for OSSTF.
  8. Cheques should come through board mail.

Ontario Science Centre

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