AGM 30 January 2015
The Steering Committee held its first AGM in Amsterdam on 30 January 2015 and discussed progress almost every month by means of a teleconference. A total of 12 meetings of the Platform Steering Committee have been held, one face-to-face following the AGM, and 11 via teleconferencing.
Some minor changes to the Constitution were made, the main change being to update the name of the organisation to “Education and Training Platform for Laboratory Animal Science (ETPLAS)” to be consistent with the website and other material produced. The registered address, PO Box address and secretariat had not changed.
Resignations and Appointments
One resignation had been accepted by the Steering Committee and a nomination by the Danish Animal Experiments Inspectorate accepted. With one remaining vacancy the Reference Group had been asked to submit their nominations and 4 were received which would be considered at the face to face meeting. New appointment/s would take effect from 1 April 2016.
Work of the Steering Committee
The ETPLAS Steering Committee had continued to work on the draft mutual recognition of education and training (E&T) courses which was prepared and received extensive review by competent authorities and the Reference Group during 2015. This would be presented at the next meeting of the National Contact Points. Ongoing tasks included a discussion paper on accreditation and a further one on CPD. This work would be followed by a proposal for mutual acceptance of practical training and competence records. This material would be reviewed widely and published on the website in due course.
During the year, members of the Steering Committee made presentations of the work of ETPLAS at the following scientific meetings;
Preparation had commenced to ensure ETPLAS would be visible at the upcoming FELASA Congress by means of scientific presentation and booth in the trade area.
Interaction with EU Commission
ETPLAS was granted Observer status at the open session of the twice-yearly meeting of National Contact Points for the implementation of Directive 2010/63/EU and updates of the work of ETPLAS were given at both meetings during 2015.
Towards the end of the year the much-awaited website was launched. Material would continue to be developed, ideas for content would be welcomed and education and training providers were being encouraged to complete the information request so that their courses would be listed.
The role of the Reference Group, to review and comment on proposals made by the Steering Committee, was defined and there was a drive to increase the representation of E&T course providers which had resulted in an increase in membership of this group to 37 members.
Contacts who had asked to receive information about the Platform (total 212) comprise
(Note, some contacts have multiple roles).
The activities in ETPLAS were enabled by grants from Laboratory Animals Ltd. and from the Landsbygdsdepartementet in the Government Offices of Sweden. These grants were allocated for initiating the activities and establishing the website. The use of the grants was reported at the end of 2015; the final report for the Landsbygdsdepartementet will be prepared at the end of 2016. The Platform funds were held, temporarily, by FELASA, until the Platform’s own bank account was opened at the end of the year when the balance of ETPLAS funds were transferred. More financial sources are needed to ensure the development of the website, for disseminating information by other means, and to support one annual face to face meeting. The Platform Steering Committee has been active in identifying and contacting possible financial sources.
Thanks were given to all the members of the Steering Committee, the Reference Group, the Secretariat and contacts for their ongoing support and commitment.