Professional Development and Educational Assistance Procedure

Purpose Statement

This procedure defines the conditions and application process for reimbursement of tuition fees (including textbooks) for job related and corporate related educational courses and criteria and process for attendance at Conferences and Seminars.

Scope

This procedure applies to all full-time permanent employees with the exception of employees on probation.

Procedure

Conditions for tuition reimbursement:

  1. To be eligible for educational assistance, employee must have successfully completed the probationary period.
  2. The courses or training must be related to the present work duties or the anticipated career plan for the employee within the Town.
  3. Performance and attendance will be a consideration factor in reimbursement.
  4. The resignation or discharge of an employee during the course of study automatically terminates the eligibility for benefits.
  5. Tuition fees and expenses for required textbooks will be reimbursed at the rate of 50% for corporate related courses or training.
  6. Tuition fees and expenses for required textbooks will be reimbursed at the rate of 100% for job related courses.
  7. All other related expenses will be the responsibility of the employee.
  8. Employees are expected to pay the tuition to the institution, which will then be refunded to the employee by submitting a paid receipt.
  9. Employee must achieve a grade of no lower than a "C" (or equivalent), (from Sheridan College Grading System - see reference) or the employee will repay the applicable fees to the Town.
  10. An employee who does not complete the course, or who does not meet the grade requirement, will be responsible for all incurred fees.
  11. An employee, who is terminated or leaves the employ of the Town within a year of completing the course, will be responsible for repaying the reimbursed amount of the most recent course.
  12. Courses must be taken on the employees own time and should not interfere with his or regular job.
  13. An employee is limited to a maximum of three (3) courses annually subject to budget availability, course cost(s), exigencies of services and Director's approval.

Application process for reimbursement of corporate and job related courses:

  1. Employees are required to complete an Employee Career Development Plan form for corporate related courses or Tuition Reimbursement form for job related courses. Forms may be obtained from the Human Resources Department.
  2. All application for reimbursement requires authorization from Department Director and Commissioner prior to forwarding to Human Resources Department.
  3. Employees whose forms are authorized are required to complete and sign the Commitment to Service Agreement form which should subsequently be forwarded to Human Resources Department.
  4. Receipts for tuition fees and authorized textbooks should be submitted to Payroll Section of the Finance Department.
  5. Invoices will be processed by Payroll and reimbursed expenses will be added to the employee's pay cheque.
  6. Employee must within thirty (30) days of completion of the course, submit proof of course completion, with the final course grade to the Human Resources Department;
  7. Grades submission for previous courses must be included prior to seeking approval for another course.

Criteria and process for attendance at conferences and seminars:

  1. Directors shall have the authority to grant approval for staff within his or her Commission or Department to attend conferences and seminars, provided the necessary funds have been provided in the current year's operating budget.
  2. All out-of-province conferences to be attended by staff shall require authorization by the Commissioner;
  3. Staff representation at any conference shall be limited to not more than three members of staff, unless attendance of additional staff has been approved in advance by the Commissioner;
  4. All arrangements for staff attendance at conferences and seminars are the responsibility of the applicable department;
  5. The Town will pay for the registration costs and other permitted business expenses in accordance with the applicable Policy and Procedure.

Definitions

Job Related Courses: Courses or training designed to develop skills, knowledge and effectiveness in employee's current position with the Town of Oakville.

Corporate Related Courses: Courses or training designed to develop skills related to future goals with the Town of Oakville. This will encompass courses taken while working towards degree, certification and diploma programs as identified during an annual performance appraisal with the Town of Oakville. Programs under consideration will include those that benefit career fields within the municipality, and not those related to the employee's current position.

Responsibilities

  1. The Directors and Commissioners are responsible for giving final approval to employee's application for tuition reimbursement based on the established criteria.
  2. The Human Resources Department is responsible for tracking information on employees who take corporate related or job related courses and attend conferences and seminars.

Procedure details

Procedure Number: HR-DVL-001-001
Parent Policy: HR-DVL-001
Section: Human Resources
Sub-Section: Develop
Author: Human Resources Department
Authority: CAO
Effective Date: 05/29/06
Review by Date: 05/29/11