Educational Incentive Program
An educational incentive program is available through the State’s Office of Training and Development for Classified employees only. The Incentive In-Service Training Program is designed to provide a pay increment for Classified employees who take and pass approved, job-related courses. First, the courses selected by the employee need to be approved by CCRI’s Director of Human Resources AND a representative of the State’s Office of Training and Development. A course that is fifteen (15) hours long is worth one-half (½) a credit. A course that is at least twenty-four (24) hours long is worth one (1) credit. Next, after completing 4 course credits, the employee will receive the incentive increment. The incentive amount equals the difference between the pay step the employee is on and the one he/she will go to at the next step increase. If the employee is on the top step of the pay range, he/she will receive the difference between that step and the step just below. For example, you have completed the 4 courses you need for an incentive increase. You are now on pay step 5 of your salary range. The incentive amount would be the difference between step 5 and step 4.
Classified employees hired before July 1, 2001, who have completed the 4 course credits as described above will receive and keep the incentive amount for their entire career with the state. If an employee hired before July 1, 2001, wants to participate in the incentive program described below, he/she may do so by completing the change form that is available in the Office of Human Resources. The employee will then be subject to the provisions of the program as follows.
Classified employees hired after July 1, 2001, who have completed the 4 course credits as described, will receive and keep the incentive amount for four (4) years. After the end of the fourth (4th) year, the incentive will be removed. For the next three (3) years, the employee may not apply for or receive incentive credit. At the end of the third (3rd) year, the employee may again begin to apply for and accumulate incentive credits with the goal of receiving another increment.
The second option is an advantage for employees who are just beginning their careers with the state of Rhode Island. At an entry level position, the difference between steps is not nearly as large as the difference between steps at higher pay grades. Further, with pay plan adjustments, even the amounts between steps at the same pay grade will change over the years. By being able to take courses and receive incentive increments again and again, employees can enhance their job skills, while receiving meaningful increases to their annual salaries.
Educational Incentive Program
The Training Section of the State Division of Personnel offers a variety of work-oriented courses for employees. Employees who enroll in these courses, subject to supervisory approval, may attend such courses during their normal working hours, provided that the same course is not offered at a time the employee is not normally at work. Other courses that may be eligible for incentive credit approval include credit courses offered by CCRI, RIC and URI. The Tuition Waiver benefit, if applicable, can be used when taking an approved course for credit at these institutions. The courses that are not offered by the Training Section must be taken on the employee’s own time.
Listed below are the policies that apply to both options. Please take note of these policies, since many have been updated and/or newly introduced to the program.
- In order to apply to the state for incentive course credit, a CS-365, Request for In-Service Training Incentive form, also known as the “green sheet”, needs to be filled out.
- The form needs to be received at the Office of Training and Development (OTD) at least 7 (seven) days before the course starts. Make sure you leave enough time after you get the form to fill it out and bring it or mail it to the Office of Human Resources, with enough additional time for the Director to sign the form and get it to the OTD. The State will not accept late requests.
- If a course is approved for incentive, you will receive a CS-372 “approval letter”. You also may be asked to supply additional information for the State to be able to make a decision on the course. If the Office of Training and Development does not approve that course for incentive, you will receive a CS-372A form letter. If you do not receive either letter, you may want to verify that the OTD received your request before it is too late to receive approval.
- All courses must be directly job related to your current job duties and appropriate for your current job classification. This means that the State will not approve courses taken in order to get a promotion or courses that the State believes are too basic or advanced for the job that you do.
- If you are required by management to take a course, then the course is not eligible for incentive credit.
- You may take up to 2 (two) courses for credit during the same time period.
- All courses must have an exam component.
- The following are courses that are ineligible for credit: those required by the job description; orientation sessions, basic or refresher training; conferences, workshops or seminars; correspondence courses; courses taken before you entered State employment; courses taken previously or courses similar to courses taken previously; courses on new policies, programs or procedures.
- If you take a course for credit that was not sponsored by the State’s Office of Training, you need to send the Office a copy of your official grade. When you do, the State will know that you passed the course and you will get the credit you deserve.
- After the State knows that you passed the course, the Office of Training will send a notification to CCRI’s Office of Human Resources for our records. Once you have completed the four (4) credits, the OTD will authorize Human Resources to implement the incentive pay increase.
There is a lot in the above material to think about. If you have any questions or would like to talk with someone about the incentive credit process, call or email Human Resources during regular office hours.