4.17  Leave for Graduate Study:

Employees who have served for at least three (3) years may, upon written approval of the President/Commissioner, be granted a leave of absence for the purpose of pursuing graduate study for a period of either a year or a half-year.

An employee applying for such leave may apply for leave without pay or leave at one-quarter pay, respectively.  In either case, it is understood that the employee will return to his or her duties upon the termination of the leave for a period equivalent to one (1) year for each one-half year of leave, or unless it is deemed inadvisable by mutual agreement between the employee and the President/Commissioner.

The employee applying for such leave shall present in writing the plan of study he or she expects to pursue while on leave to the President/Commissioner which must be approved by the President/Commissioner before the request for leave is granted.  At the close of the period of leave, he or she shall file an appropriate written report with the President/Commissioner.

An employee who is on leave for graduate study and who is receiving a salary shall be permitted to accept financial aid in the form of a fellowship or scholarship which does not require the performance of teaching or other duties that would prevent him or her from pursuing a full-time program of graduate study.