Let's face it, asking your boss about funding for an out-of-state conference can be uncomfortable. It's a common fear for teachers who understand that school budgets are stretched to the limits.
The good news is, we've got a solution (several in fact) for educators who are clamoring to get to the ISTE Conference & Expo in Denver but might be short on financial support.
Check out these five ways to fund your trip to ISTE 2016.
1. Enter ISTE's member appreciation prize drawing.
February is member appreciation month, and ISTE is giving away four registrations to ISTE 2016 as part of 29 days of thanks. Simply click, provide your contact information and tell us what you’d say to spark inspiration in a colleague or the education world. Just like that, you'll be entered to win a registration in a random drawing.
2. Be award-winning.
All six juried ISTE Awards include conference registration and up to $1,000 in travel reimbursements. These annual awards recognize exceptional educators and leaders who are paving the way for connected learning. Categories include Outstanding Leadership, Outstanding Teacher, Outstanding Young Educator, Advocacy, Distinguished District ($2,000 travel reimbursement) and the Kay L. Bitter Vision Award.
Apply or nominate a colleague by Feb. 29.
3. Tell us what you hope to learn at ISTE 2016.
Enter the ISTE 2016 social media contest by creating a 20-second video telling us what you hope to learn at ISTE 2016 and why you want to attend. Upload the video to Facebook, Twitter or Instagram with the hashtag #ISTE2016 for a chance to win a free conference registration and up to three nights of lodging.
Enter by Mar. 31. The winner(s) will be announced in April.
4. Crowdsource your way to Colorado.
Crowdsourcing websites like PledgeCents not only allow you to raise funds for classroom needs, you can use them to raise money for conferences. It worked last year for educator Jessica Runtz who posted her case for attending ISTE 2015.
We're betting there are more professional learning scholarships and contests out there for educators. If you know of any, share the link in the comments section below or post on social media.
5. Ask your district.
Sometimes getting the green light is just a matter of making a compelling case. We've created a few tools to help you explain why you need to be at ISTE 2016 to your administrator.