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2011 Best Employers

Brevard Public Schools

This school system offers employees an innovative wellness program.

Winning Years: 2011, 2009, 2008, 2007, 2006, 2005
Industry: Education (Secondary)
Location: Viera, Fla.

The focus of Brevard's wellness initiative continues to be "Knowing Your Health Numbers" and education is continually offered on nutrition, exercise, stress management, diabetes and the importance of preventative health, as well as striving toward optimal health. Onsite bone-density screenings, annual health fairs and onsite chair massages are available and the wellness program has monthly, brown-bag lunch-and-learn sessions on health topics. A notable 46 percent of Brevard's employees are age 50 and over.

See also: How the 2011 Best Employers winners were selected.

Additional Policies and Practices:

Recruiting: Brevard Public Schools uses their Retirement Office's records, which contain information for their retired school teachers and principals, to fill short-term employment positions. Retired teachers are hired to fill substitute positions.

Workplace Culture/Continued Opportunities: To its full- and part-time employees, Brevard Public Schools offers these learning and development programs: in-house classroom training, online training (must work 20 or more hours per week), and certification classes (must work 20 or more hours per week). Full-time employees are also offered a tuition reimbursement benefit. In the past 12 months, 100% of Brevard employees participated in at least one of the training opportunities with an average of 7 hours spent in training.  

Long-service anniversaries are celebrated with announcements, parties and awards. An annual 'Retiree Day' celebration is held to recognize retiring employees and awards are given to those employees with the most years of service.  

Employees have opportunities to gain new experiences by working on temporary assignments in other departments, on team projects and by cross training.  

Examples of job accommodations offered at Brevard include providing equipment for employees needing amplified audio equipment (telephones), modifying facilities to allow for improved handicapped access, providing large screen and large print computer monitors to assist the sight impaired, and providing custom furniture for those with physical limitations.
Benefits/Health: Full-time employees (working 26 or more hours per week) receive individual and family medical coverage, individual and family prescription drug coverage, individual and family vision and dental insurance, individual and family long-term care insurance, as well as short- and long-term disability.  

Health benefits for retirees include individual and spouse medical and drug coverage, individual and spouse vision and dental insurance, individual and spouse long-term care insurance, and individual and spouse life insurance or other death benefit coverage.  

New hires are eligible for all these benefits upon retirement. Retirees are also offered mental health coverage.  

Brevard offers employees a flexible spending account (FSA) to assist in covering out-of-pocket health care costs.

Next: Wellness programs and phased retirement. >>

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