Oct 312013
Following the Professional Improvement Committee’s (PIC) meeting on Tuesday, October 29, 2013, the 2013-2014 PIC Kit was finalized and will become effective November 1, 2013 and can be found online here: http://www.esteachers.org/wp-content/uploads/2010/12/Microsoft-Word-2013-2014-PIC-Policy-Kit.doc.pdf
Here are a few notable changes to this year’s PIC policy:
1. The per day of conference expense allowance has been increased from $150 per day to $200 per day in order to help offset the increased cost of travel. This change has been made possible due to an accumulated surplus.
2. Considering the increased cost of air travel, the maximum for travel has been increased in the isolated regions of Fermont and the Magdalen Islands from $900 to $1100. Nevertheless, teachers should be encouraged to shop early when booking flights in order to reduce travel costs so that this practice may continue.
And here are a few reminders:
1. Although plan C remains unchanged (maximum of $700 for credit-course fees or the language proficiency exam), teachers should be reminded that this is a viable professional development option. The PIC endorses the McGill Distinguished Educator’s series and teachers should be made aware that some of these courses are available by video conference.
2. Schools must do their best to reduce the amount of substitution when attending professional development activities. If a large number of staff will be absent (e.g. travel to the annual QPAT Convention on Wednesday, November 20, 2013), then serious consideration should be made to use a floating pedagogical day to reduce the costs associated with substitution and to ensure the legitimacy of instruction in the classroom. Consider this: if 45 teachers throughout ESSB travel on November 20, then 1/3 of the school board’s teaching staff will be absent from their classrooms and the resulting cost could amount to $193.50 x 45 = $8707.50 (and this figure is low since it doesn’t include the cost of fringe benefits). Thank you in advance for doing your best to help ESSB and PIC reduce the cost of substitution.
Oct 232012
The PIC committee met today and created the 2012-2013 PIC Policy Kit.
It is important that teachers pay particular attention to page 6 of this year’s policy kit since there have been some changes made to who is eligible to apply for PIC funding. The amount of funding for this year is the same as last year except there is now a $1500 maximum limit.
Coincidentally, I just leaned today that the annual QPAT Convention Program is now available on QPAT’s website here. Any teacher who wishes to attend this Convention must remember the following important points:
  • Teachers must have their school/centre administrator sign their authorization to travel before they leave
  • Teachers must preserve their nametags as proof of attendance and submit them to ESSB with their expense claims
  • Teachers should register quickly if they intend on attending any pre-Convention activities
  • Teachers should be encouraged to attend the keynote speaker, Mr. Josh Freed
  • And teachers have the stamina, the Thursday night social is increasingly popular and fun to boot!
Oct 302011

The PIC committee met for the first time this school year last Thursday. At this meeting the following items were dealt with:

  1. The 2011-2012 PIC Policy Kit is available; the good news is that PIC funds are healthy and teachers will receive the same amounts as last year for their professional development. Teachers are reminded to send their authorization to travel as soon as possible (especially if they intend to attend the annual QPAT convention in November). Please don’t forget to indicate from which plan you wish to benefit (i.e. A, B or C). For those who will attend the QPAT convention, you will need to submit your name tag as proof of attendance.
  2. One important change to this year’s PIC Policy Kit is the condition that PIC monies cannot be combined with any other type of funding (e.g. NANS, PDIG, etc).
  3. If a teacher intends to take credit courses, remember that this request must be made in advance (see annex III of the current kit).