The Oregon State University (OSU) Extension Service Outdoor School program expects participating districts to adhere to standard accounting, procurement, and contracting policies. This includes, but is not limited to, dividing costs into two broad classifications:
We provide examples of allowable and prohibited costs for each of these budget categories below. Our video about using Measure 99 funding to support students with disabilities at outdoor school provides additional examples of allowable costs: Measure 99 Funding for Students with Exceptional Needs video (8 minutes).
Please note: In 2021-2022, the OSU Extension Service Outdoor School program will add indirect cost support to the district's reimbursed costs if the district submits their Outdoor School report by the 2021-2022 deadline (July 31, 2022).
If the district meets the 2021-2022 reporting deadline, the Outdoor School program will include $3.50 per participating student (no less than $500 and no more than $20,000 per district) in the district's final invoice / reimbursement. OSU will restate this deadline and the indirect support levels in the district's work order of approved funding for the 2021-2022 school year.
Again - in 2021-2022, district submitting their reports by the deadline of July 31, 2022, will receive this indirect cost support. Districts submitting their Outdoor School reports after July 31, 2022, will not receive the indirect cost support funds
These are the district or school's costs to pay in-house staff (employees that the district pays payroll taxes for) or contractors who help with outdoor school program set-up and attendance. This could include college students, teacher’s aides, translators, nurses, or one-on-one aides.
The OSU Outdoor School program will reimburse pay that is:
For example, within a 24-hour day, we subtract:
Of those nine hours, the district should invoice only the hours worked. This also assumes the district funds the seven-hour school day through other sources.
The district's stipend or personnel costs can include:
The district's invoice can include staff time spent on planning and attending outdoor school, and preparing the final Outdoor School program report.
The district's invoiced costs can include pay for substitutes if the substitute:
The Stipend/Personnel category does not cover the cost of:
These are the district's costs to provide students with a successful outdoor school experience.
Allowable Program Costs include, but are not limited to:
Please note: The school/district must maintain this equipment/clothing for future outdoor school use. The school/district should not send this apparel or gear home with students. Learn about the Columbia Pro Purchase program.
Hotel costs for staff/chaperones. The school/district must verify the staff/chaperone is necessary. And they must verify that the accommodations are a necessity, not a preference.
Prohibited Program Costs include, but are not limited to:
OSU will not pay districts for supplies they already own, without documented approval from OSU. This would include items like:
Unreimbursed transportation costs are the district’s costs for bussing to and from outdoor school. They are only the costs that are not covered by other sources such as:
The OSU Outdoor School program will also reimburse districts for all costs related to taking students/parents/families from your school to an outdoor school facility. You or your partner organizations might want to do this as part of a school-sponsored outdoor school orientation or information event. Reimbursable transportation expenses can include bus fees, fuel, mileage, driver, or charter costs.
Districts should include costs associated with personal vehicle use in the Stipend/Personnel category. This is only if the district approved the personal vehicle use as a reasonable outdoor school expense.
Provider Fees are fees paid to an outdoor school provider if the school or district contracts a provider-based outdoor school experience. The provider’s per-student fee should include housing, food, and activity costs. The district should include costs for chaperones to attend outdoor school in Provider costs. The district should divide the total cost (including chaperone costs) by the number of students attending to the per-student cost.
The district should include the school or district's outdoor school costs in the program cost category if the school or district is the outdoor school provider.
Districts should verify that the provider's costs are of fair market value by gathering quotes from two or more suppliers with similar programs.
Indirect costs are not tracked or reported by the district. In 2021-2022, OSU will add indirect cost support to the district’s invoice / reimbursement if the district/school submits their 2021-2022 Outdoor School report on or before July 31, 2022. The indirect cost support will be paid at a rate of $3.50 per participating student (no less than $500 and no more than $20,000 per district). OSU will state the deadline and payment rates in the district’s work order approving funding for the 2021-2022 school year.
OSU does not require the participating district to submit a full accounting of expenses with your reported costs, however, OSU may request the district produce copies of receipts or other documentation as part of an audit.
The district must retain all documents related to outdoor school costs in support of your Outdoor School reported costs. These documents include, but are not limited to:
Districts should consider retaining documentation for outdoor school-related expenses for a minimum of six years.
There is NO requirement for districts or schools to have or to document matching or in-kind funds for OSU Outdoor School program awards.
ORS 244.040 prohibits every public official from using or attempting to use the position held as a public official to obtain a financial benefit if the opportunity for the financial benefit would not otherwise be available but for the position held by the public official. The financial benefit prohibited can be either an opportunity for gain or to avoid an expense.