School districts are already saving money as a result of the reforms included in 2011 Wisconsin Act 10, the budget repair bill. The Kaukauna School District in the Fox River Valley reported that they were facing a deficit of $400,000 before Act 10 went into effect. Now, the district has announced that they are looking at a $1.5 million surplus thanks to the reforms enacted by the State Legislature.
The district stated that they were able to negotiate with WEA Trust, a health insurance provider run by WEAC, the state’s largest teacher’s union, to reduce health insurance premiums. Additionally, $1.2 million of the school district’s savings came from the increased contributions by employees into their health insurance and pension.
The Kaukauna School District also reported that they anticipate smaller class sizes, from 31 to 26 students in high school and 26 to 23 students in elementary school, as well as the possibility of more one on one time with teachers.
Other school districts are using these cost-saving tools to save taxpayer money and be more efficient as well. The Menomonee Falls School Board recently announced that they approved new contracts last month that saved $2.4 million by switching to a new health insurance provider. The Hartland-Lakeside district also reported that they switched their health insurance provider from WEA Trust to United Healthcare, saving their district $690,000.