Keenan Develops Robust Online Resource Center to Assist School Districts in Addressing Special Education Liability and Fiscal Challenges

New Resources Are Integrated into the Company's Innovative P&C Bridge Online Portal

Aug 31, 2010, 17:25 ET from Keenan & Associates

TORRANCE, Calif., Aug. 31 /PRNewswire/ -- Keenan & Associates, the largest privately held insurance brokerage and consulting firm in California, has announced the development of a significant new resource center focused on special education for its innovative online P&C Bridge portal.  Recognizing this increasing burden for school districts from both a liability and a fiscal perspective, special education is a priority initiative for the Keenan Property & Casualty Division.

Spiraling costs for special education are dealing a devastating blow to already strapped public schools.  These costs have increased to upwards of 20 percent of a district's general fund, of which half is "encroachment" or unfunded costs.

"This mandate is by far the largest under-funded program school districts are required to provide for their students," noted John Stephens, Property & Casualty Practice Leader for Keenan.  "In fact, it is not uncommon for a district to have $10 to $20 million in unfunded costs due to the risks and inadequate funding associated with special education."

The robust Keenan Special Education Resource Center will provide a single source for a wealth of tools to help districts reduce their "encroachment" costs.  It will offer convenient, user-friendly, online access to risk management information, training, physical and ergonomic guidelines, sample behavioral approaches, a code of safe work practices, benchmarking tools, transportation guidelines, safety awareness bulletins, sample programs and policies, tools to control legal expenses, purchasing guides, computer resources for classrooms and an attorney panel.

Ron Bennett, President/CEO of School Services of California said, "The Keenan Special Education Resource Center will help districts target and reduce special ed costs at a time when we need it most."

A dramatic rise in the number of special education students in public schools has significantly increased the cost of serving them.  In 1975, with the passage of the Education for All Handicapped Children Act, Congress committed to funding 40 percent of the cost of special education, making states responsible for the remaining 60 percent.  However, Congress has annually appropriated funds to meet only from 8 to 16 percent of those costs.  To address this deficit and meet the requirements of the Individuals with Disabilities Act (IDEA), districts are faced with reducing or eliminating other programs and services.  The Keenan Special Education Resource Center is designed to assist schools in mitigating these deficits.

For information on Keenan insurance brokerage and consulting programs, visit www.keenan.com.  

About Keenan

Founded in 1972, Keenan is the 14th largest insurance consulting and brokerage firm in the United States and the largest independent broker in California.  Keenan is dedicated to providing superior insurance products and services to healthcare organizations, schools, community colleges, and municipalities for employee benefits, third-party claims administration, workers' compensation, integrated disability, risk management, and property and liability.  With headquarters in Torrance, CA, Keenan has a staff of more than 650 insurance specialists and branch offices in Riverside, San Clemente, Westlake Village, Oakland, San Jose, Rancho Cordova, Redwood City, Pleasanton and Eureka.  For more information, call 800-654-8102 or 310-212-3344, email info@keenan.com, or visit www.keenan.com.

SOURCE Keenan & Associates



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