Teachers get raise, pay more for insurance

THREE RIVERS, Mich. - Three Rivers teachers will pay more out of pocket for health insurance under the terms of a new contract that the superintendent said will minimize impact on the classroom, according to radio station WLKM-95.9.

The report did not name the insurance vendor, but earlier reports said the district purchases health coverage through the Michigan Education Special Services Association, a third-party administrator affiliated with the Michigan Education Association.

The contract calls for Three Rivers Education Association members to pay $75 per month for insurance coverage as of April 1, up from $24 per month. In 2009-2010, they will pay $89 per month, WLKM reported. Teachers also will have higher co-pays for prescription medication, according to the report, and will receive a one percent pay increase as of April 1 and another one percent in 2009-2010.

Superintendent Roger Rathburn told WLKM, "It's a contract that will allow us to continue balancing our budget. It will allow us to be fiscally responsible and it will minimize the impact to the classroom and avoid raising class sizes and/or cutting programs."

WLKM-95.9, "TR school board ratifies contract," Feb. 25, 2009

Michigan Education Digest, "Board implements health plan; union may sue," Jan. 19, 2009

Michigan Education Report, "It's up to school boards to save insurance dollars," Nov. 14, 2007