Study Leave FAQ
From April 2009 the Study Leave application process has changed. Instead of the responsibility of authorisation lying with the individual NHS Trusts the workload has now been moved to the individual schools. This has been instigated to increase the accuracy of student records ensuring all trainees receive their allotted times and to maximise the potential for trainees to receive an allowance and/or locally provided courses. Although there is a general policy on the Severn Deanery Website regarding study leave it is important to note that individual schools have the ability to alter certain factors. This page will briefly answer some of the frequently asked questions that have been raised regarding the study leave policy for the School of Surgery.
Please note: As this study leave process is a new initiative the answers to the questions above may be subject to change.
How much money am I entitled to?
The Severn Postgraduate School of Surgery are very eager to make sure trainees can receive the most for their money. For this reason the Schools policy differs from the generic one on the Severn Deanery website. For ST3’s and above an annual budget (from April 1st – 31st March) of £550 will be available to claim for approved activities. If you are scheduled to finish your training post within this year your budget will be allocated on a monthly basis using a pro rata system up until your leaving date (if it’s the end of your training then you will recieve funding until the end of your period of grace).
Is it the same for Core trainees?
For Core Trainees the process is a little different.
If you are a core surgical trainee, the Postgraduate School will retain the budget on your behalf and will aim to purchase a large percentage of the mandatory courses you will need in your time as a Core Trainee. These will be bulk purchased to obtain a good price and delivered locally to avoid spending a substantial portion of your grant on train fares to London etc. The reality is that in the current financial environment we will never obtain additional funding until we can demonstrate maximum value from the funding we already obtain.
No-one will be disadvantaged. This year we have obtained significant additional funding to enable us to move to the new arrangements and to set up processes whereby we start to deliver high quality courses locally. Mr Robert Longman is Chair of the Postgraduate School of Surgery Skills and Courses Committee and is working on new skills courses in collaboration with your Programme Directors and the Bristol University Department of Anatomy. There are some very exciting possibilities in store. More information on this will appear over the next year.
However as this change in policy won’t start until the next academic year (August 2009) Core Trainees who are progressing into their CT2 year in 2009/10 will receive their budget from April 2009 until August 2009 which totals approximately £180. If you are a CT2 who is definitely progressing into an ST3 or equivalent role within the Severn Deanery then you will receive your full entitlement of £550.
How many days am I entitled to?
Each Trainee is entitled to apply for up to 30 study leave days a year. Half of this allocation is expected to be used for locally/internally provided courses. All trainees are allowed to claim up to 5 of the 30 days as private study leave per year. Each year starts and resets from the trainees contractual start date. If trainee is in a LAT or FTSTA post then the trainees days will be allocated using a pro rata scheme for the period of length they are there for.
How do I apply for study leave?
To apply for study leave a trainee must download a form from the Severn Deanery Websites Study Leave Policy page. It is important to download a new form for each application as the forms structure are subject to change.
Once a form has been filled in (it is imperative you obtain the three signatures required or the form will be returned) you need to post the document to your school contact. For the Severn Postgraduate School of Surgery this is:
Mr Chad Elliott,
Vantage Office Park,
Old Gloucester Road,
Tel 01454 252 673.
Once the form has been received the school contact will seek permission and send a letter to the trainee informing the recipient of the outcome. If the application is successful and the trainee has funds to make a full or part claim for reimbursement, an expenses claim form will be included within the approval letter.
How do I make a financial claim?
If a study leave application is successful the trainee in question will automatically receive and expenses claim form if they have any funds remaining to claim from. This form cannot be submitted by the trainee until the training event has taken place as the school requires proof of attendance. Please ensure the form is filled out correctly (preferably typed but if hand written please ensure clarity) ensuring all receipts along with proof of attendance are attached and post them to your school contact. Your school contact will then record the claim and if authorised post it to the Wakefield finance company who will transfer the funds into the account of the trainee. At the point of authorisation or rejection the school contact will also send a letter to the trainee notifying them of the decision.
What do I do if my Study Leave Application is Rejected?
If a study leave application is rejected the leave has not been authorised. If a trainee has any queries in regards to the outcome it is suggested these are focused towards the school contact in the form of an email. A rejected application means that the leave is not authorised and therefore the time will have to be taken as different type of leave or attendance to the event will have to be cancelled. This application will not be eligible for a financial claim. It is also the trainees responsibility to tell the three signatories the outcome of the application.