The Wellness Council of America, with local affiliate Wellness Council of Wisconsin, recently presented its coveted GOLD Well Workplace Award to the Sheboygan Area School District (SASD). SASD offers wellness benefits to over 1,100 employees and their families. The Gold Well Workplace Award recognizes an organization for its commitment to the health and well-being of their employees.
The Sheboygan Area School District, by achieving the Well Workplace Award, has made a long-lasting commitment to the health and well-being of its employees. As stated by WELCOA President Ryan Picarella, “Good companies know that their employees are their most valuable asset. Great companies adopt policies that support employees’ efforts to reduce health risks and are bold about motivating them through bold strategies, programs, and tactics. Great companies know that by improving their employees’ health, they can reduce health care costs.”
Through the efforts of the employee-based Wellness and Benefits Committees, a results-based wellness program was designed. Jeri Dreikosen, the district’s Wellness Coordinator, stated, “The employees need to be commended in their efforts to get healthy and taking the ‘we’re all in this together’ approach.” The Sheboygan Area School District has been able to hold insurance costs in check over the past 5 years. “While most businesses have raised their insurance rates 7-8% per year, the Sheboygan Area School District has raised their insurance rates a total of 7% over the past 5 years,” stated Dreikosen, “the average employee score on their Biometric screening (measuring blood pressure, cholesterol levels, BMI, etc) in 2012 was 717; in 2016 it was 837. Our employee health is definitely improving!” The district is committed to offering an integrated, comprehensive health and wellness program that improves employee health, effectiveness, and quality of life.
All employees and their spouses can take part in many of the programs offered at the Sheboygan Area School District, including exercise classes, weight loss programs, and summer activity challenges. SASD has also partnered with Sheboygan County and the City of Sheboygan to establish an onsite wellness clinic for all insured employees and their dependents. All of these factors have led to a healthier workforce and continued savings.
The Well Workplace Awards initiative is driven by a rigorous set of criteria outlined in WELCOA’s seven benchmarks to a result-oriented Well Workplace. Since its inception in 1991, over 1,000 organizations, ranging from educational institutions to non-profit and profit sectors have joined the list of “America’s Healthies Companies” by receiving the Well Workplace Award. “The Sheboygan Area School District worked hard to successfully meet the rigorous standards set by the Well Workplace process. It is our pleasure to recognize them as the newest Wisconsin employer to achieve Well Workplace status,” said Wellness Council of Wisconsin’s Executive Director, Jessica Raddemann.
The Wellness Council of Wisconsin of Wisconsin was founded in 1985 by nine employers from the Wisconsin business community. With more than 6,000 member organizations located throughout North America, WELCOA is highly recognized and regarded for their innovative and result-oriented approach to worksite wellness.
Dreikosen added, “I’m proud of our employees and their spouses-we all earned this award. Because it’s really not about insurance costs at all, is it? It’s about quality of life.”