Sally Abbott, a geography teacher, is travelling to Sri Lanka in the Easter holidays to research a new geography module on schools shattered by the tsunami and to look at how the country is recovering.
She also hopes to set up a twinning project with a local school and study the disaster's effect on the tourist trade for the leisure and tourism GCSE she also teaches.
Like all teachers, Miss Abbott is making sure the cash is spent wisely and, as well as contributing pound;100 of her own money, she will make savings by staying with a former Cranbourne teacher now working in the country.
"You can spend a lot of money for a one or two-day course and maybe collect a few worksheets, which may or may not be that relevant. This gives us the chance to be a little bit more adventurous," she said.