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2015-2016 Sabbatical Applications on-line – due 3/17

February 22, 2015 pm28 1:32 pm

Did you know the New York City Department of Education still grants study sabbaticals? Well, they do. I took one last year. I know two people on them this year. And the application for next year has been posted, and is due in just a few weeks.

Here’s the DoE’s sabbatical page (very little explanation):  Sabbaticals (note, the page has a link, but it currently goes to the the wrong memo. See below for next year’s)
Here’s the Sabbatical memo for next year: Sabbatical_Memo_2015-2016_SOLAS_4_Feb_12_2015_(2)_Final_Version
And here’s the on-line application: Self Service On-line Leave Application (SOLAS)  (Sabbaticals are included)

What do you do on sabbatical?  Take courses (16 credits) or do a project. But I got a lot of advice that said the coursework gets approved more easily.

How much pay do you get? For a full-year sabbatical you get 70% of your pay.
Can you afford that?  Maybe. A 30% pay cut is substantial, but taxes fall more than in proportion. And, you can drop TDA contributions to a lower level. And we are in the process of seeing raises – 3% this May, 3% next may. And we get our first “retroactive” payment next October. I think mine will be just over $5000, minus taxes. But there is also an extra expense to consider: courses cost money. Mine were about $7000. (CUNY)

What courses do you take?  They should be “rigorous,” “job-related,” and the majority should meet during regular school hours. Nothing on-line, or weekends…

They want a list of courses now, but the class schedules are not out!  Not a problem. Use last year’s schedules – likely your courses will be quite similar. Many courses are offered in the same time slot every year. If not, you’ll complete a change of course request. Not a big deal. I did three changes, all approved.

The application is completely on-line. When I submitted mine, I included a cover letter that explained how my stuff was relevant to work I do in my school. Not sure if you can do that on-line, but if you can, it’s a good idea to point out to the superintendent the relevance and rigor of the courses.

Are you eligible?  If you have 14 years of service, including this year, including up to three years as a PPT. (less for a one term sabbatical)

Is it worth it?  Wow. Courses can be fun. Destressing is great. Having some real time to reflect on your teaching is great. Long weekends are great. College breaks (6 weeks in Dec/Jan, Spring break, summer from mid-May to Labor Day) are great.

Some people get bored. I don’t understand them, but I know they exist. If that’s you, then no, a sabbatical would be bad. Some people can’t take any drop in pay. Family, mortgage, kids in school ($$$), debt. Not you either. But for most of us who’ve put in a decade in a half, tighten the belt a notch, get working on that application now, and prepare to leave, learn, and breathe free.

For more information, contact your UFT borough office.

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2 Comments leave one →
  1. February 25, 2015 pm28 4:00 pm 4:00 pm

    How many years of service do you need to be eligible for a half year sabbatical? Is it contingent on a principal’s approval?

    -Tom

  2. March 5, 2015 am31 1:52 am 1:52 am

    one’ll’ve had t’ “breathe free” already longlong before any’v this’ll’ve ever begun to’ve made any sense; so be it, mumblemumble. christ buddy i’m afraid to even file my so-called whaddayacallit; taxes. they just want your sig lying on the record. for all i can tell. what planet again?

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