Teachers may request permission to attend alternate professional development activities. Requests must be submitted at least 20 days prior to the convention.
For approval of requests by a teacher to be absent from convention responsibilities, the following three minimum criteria must be met:
an organized professional development activity that exceeds those provided at convention
an extraordinary professional development opportunity that could not be accessed by the teacher at another time
a relevant professional development session not included in the convention program that will enhance professional practice.
The Convention Attendance Committee has the authority to grant permission for a teacher to be absent from convention. Teachers may appeal a decision of the committee to the Convention Board to render a final decision.
An example of an appropriate request would include a one-time attendance at a national or international conference which addresses the emergent professional needs of the teacher. Such requests will not be granted two years in a row and instead require a minimum two years between such requests.
Although worthy enterprizes, school trips such as ski trips, field trips, voluntary participation in other activities (eg, coaching) and school board-facilitated activities (eg, job fairs) do not qualify as professional development activities.