The Professional Development Incentive Grant Scheme has been well received by language teachers, and the Standing Committee on Language Education and Research (SCOLAR) decided to relax the deadline for submission of applications to allow eligible language teachers more time to prepare and apply for the grant to pursue relevant programmes of study.
The decision came after a recent review of the application and vetting procedures for the initiative since its commencement in April this year.
A spokesperson for SCOLAR announced today (27 October) that effective from 1 November, eligible teachers may choose to either file their application before the date of commencement of their programme as they do now or within 60 calendar days from the commencement date.
"Also, we have revamped the application form in order to allow eligible language teachers to apply for grants more swiftly.
"If there are eligible teachers who commenced their programmes of study between 2 April and 31 October 2004 (from the launch of the Scheme to the date when the new application requirements come into effect) and were not able to successfully apply for grants due to the original submission deadline, they can file their applications again on or before 31 December 2004. We will process these applications in an impartial manner to ensure fairness for all applicants," he added.
The revised application form and Notes to Applicants will be available on SCOLAR's website at http://www.language-education.com. For further information, please contact the SCOLAR Support Unit at 3527 0180.
The Professional Development Incentive Grant Scheme was set up by SCOLAR in April 2004 to encourage serving teachers of the Chinese and English Language subjects to enhance their subject knowledge and pedagogy in the language they teach by providing financial assistance to meet 50% of tuition fee, up to a maximum of $30,000, for eligible teachers to pursue relevant programmes of study.
A total of $225 million has been allocated from the Language Fund to support the Scheme. As at 15 October 2004, the Scheme had received over 3 700 applications and the amount of funding sought had exceeded $111 million.
Established in 1996, SCOLAR advises the Government on language education issues and the use of the Language Fund.