Teachers Urged to Apply for Professional Development Bursaries

Article excerpt

As a new school year starts, the General Teaching Council for Wales is encouraging teachers to apply for a share of the significant amounts of funding still available under this year's Continuing Professional Development programme to help them meet their performance objectives, being agreed in schools across Wales.

With the programme receiving a boost from the Welsh Assembly Government, the council has funding for about 3,000 Professional Development Bursaries of up to pounds 500 each during 2004-05.

The bursaries can be used for a range of professional development opportunities, including visiting schools to see examples of good practice, course fees, attendance at workshops and conferences, developing skills to improve classroom technique and shadowing teachers in other schools.

Gary Brace, chief executive of the General Teaching Council, said, 'We are starting to plan next year's funding programme and looking to introduce a number of improvements from next April, but, for the present, we have made several changes to make accessing the funds easier for teachers.

'The most important of these is to remove the application deadlines introduced this year, which may have proved a barrier, and to re- introduce a first-come first- served system for those applications that meet the criteria. …