Education Assistance Plan

for employees

education assistance plan

Education Assistance Plan & career incentive program

In response to the COVID-19 Pandemic, the Board of Commissioners authorized the County Manager to implement cost control measures to ensure sound financial management within the County. The Education Assistance Plan & Career Incentive Program has reopened.

View program procedure here.

Disclaimer: If an employee's current department is not listed, then no form was submitted by departmental leadership. Subsequently, employees from that department will not qualify for participation. 

Here are 4 steps to get started.   
Step 1: Select your current department below.
Step 2: Select and review your department’s Approved Program List. Note: Your program must appear on your department’s list for consideration.
Step 3: Select the Department Selection & Pre-Approval for Coursework form.
Step 4: Click Begin Signing to access the form. Follow the directions, sign and submit.

 

Please direct all questions to HR’s Employee Development Division at EmployeeDevelopment@FultonCountyGA.gov.

 

education assistance

Frequently asked questions

Who is eligible?

a. The employee is permanent, full-time, and has completed at least 6 months of employment with Fulton County Government.
b. The educational program is on the department’s approved list.
c. The educational program is from an accredited institution or independent certification body.
d. The employee’s pre-approval form is being submitted during the Open Enrollment Period for a future educational program that the employee will either be enrolled or will complete during the specified quarter or semester.

What type of coursework is covered?

a. Programs at accredited institutions that relate:
i. directly to the employee’s present position or
ii. to future job goal within the County. (Must be a position that employee is reasonably expected to advance or transfer in the future).

b. *Covers all general education courses eligible for credit towards completion of the degree program.

Can I appeal if the Appointing Authority denies my application?

a. No, participation is a privilege granted at the discretion of the Appointing Authority. There are no opportunities for grievance or appeal.

Are the cost of study materials covered?

a. Yes , an employee may request reimbursement of the costs of textbooks and other study materials for approved courses taken.

How much is reimbursed?

a. All payments are made to eligible employees once funding is available.

b. Tuition Reimbursements are made to any employee who completes an approved course. The employee may qualify for reimbursement up to $5,000 per calendar year or a lifetime cap of $35,000.

c. Education Achievement Bonuses are paid according to the table below.



For example, if you earn an approved license, the $6000 will be paid over a 2-year period. You will receive $3000 in year one and $3000 in year two.

What programs qualify for an Education Achievement Bonus?

a. Licensures, professional certifications, and certification programs that are on your department’s approved list.

Whats the difference between a Certification Program versus a Professional Certification

a. A certification program is training on a specialized topic in which participants receive a certificate after completing a course and passing an assessment. Completion of that program demonstrates knowledge for a set period of time.

b. A Professional Certification is recognized across the industry as validating a certain level of expertise. A Professional Certification has ongoing requirements to maintain the designation.

After receiving the Educational Achievement Bonus or Tuition Reimbursement, what happens if I leave the County before completing the service commitment period?

a. Fulton County will seek to recoup monies paid in accordance with the Recoupment of Monies Policy (add policy number) on a prorated basis. This means that you will return money for the remaining months of the service agreement that was not worked.

Are we offering Education Achievement Bonuses this year?

a. Yes, Education Achievement Bonuses will be offered for licensures, professional certifications, and certification programs on your current department’s approved list. Employees must apply via www.fultoncountyga.gov/educationassistance.

Why are degrees no longer considered for the Education Achievement Bonus?

a. At this time, degrees are considered under the Tuition Reimbursement program.

Are payments retroactive for the Education Achievement Bonuses and Tuition Reimbursements earned from 2020 to 2022?

This is currently being reviewed by the County’s leadership team. When a final determination is made, an announcement will be shared. Only programs completed after May 2022 are being considered at this time.

What flexibility exists for each department's allotted funds?

a. The department could add to the $10,000 so it can permit more employees to be considered, the initial answer would be yes once it is confirmed in advance that the availability of funding with the departmental budget analyst

Are ORCA employees eligible to participate in the Education Assistance and Career Incentive Plan?

a. No. ORCA employees are not eligible to participate in the Education Assistance and Career Incentive Plan. The Education Assistance and Career Incentive Policy indicates that only permanent, full-time County Employees are eligible to participate in the Education Assistance and Career Incentive Plan.

Can an employee participate in the program even if the Pre-Approval Open Enrollment period has passed?

Generally, an employee who did not submit an application during the pre-approval open enrollment period will not be permitted to participate in the Education Assistance Program. An exception will be granted, however, to those employees who were unable to apply for participation during the pre-approval open enrollment period due to ordered military duty.