Sponsors of professional development activities in Vermont are a critical part of the professional development system.
Participants count on Sponsors to offer training and courses that –
- are documented so they can be verified and “count”
- taught by instructors who are skilled in teaching adults
- address one or more of the Core Knowledge and Competencies needed by early childhood and afterschool professionals to effectively work with children, families, other staff and communities.
Sponsors and Instructors are two different roles. Here are answers to your frequently asked questions about being a Sponsor and being an Instructor.
Training or Event: What’s the Difference?
When a sponsor hosts a college fair, resource fair, advocacy or legislative event, it is not a training but it can count for hours toward the STARS Families and Community arena. One way to do this is to give participants a certificate that acknowledges their attendance with their name, the title and description of the event, the date, and the logo/name of the sponsor. Unlike a training, a resource or advocacy event:
- may not require participants to be there the whole time,
- supports each person to meet their own needs/goals by attending,
- does not require the facilitator to be in the Instructor Registry,
- may include goals, but not learning objectives to be met by each attendee
Making this distinction will help maintain the integrity of professional development training, and support STARS as well.
BFIS Sponsors are different than other sponsors. They –
- work with Northern Lights and the BFIS (Bright Futures Information System) data system.
- Have their training posted in the statewide BFIS Course Calendar, free of charge
- Ensure their attendance is documented and verified in the BFIS data system, so it is easy easy for staff and directors to find and track
- Use only use Instructors in the Instructor Registry
- Make it easier for STARS, child care program licensors and other administrators to find individual professional development information all in one place, and look at training state-wide
4 Steps to Becoming a BFIS Sponsor include:
- contact Northern Lights staff and receive an orientation to being a BFIS Sponsor
- sign an agreement with Northern Lights to confirm the partnership
- receive protected documents from Northern Lights that you use to document trainings you offer
- maintain contact with Northern Lights to stay current, get updates, and provide feedback
The Bright Futures Information System(BFIS) is a data management system operated by the Child Development Division of the Department for Children and Families. Northern Lights Career Development Center helps people to use the professional development tools in BFIS.