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TASB Risk Fund History

Explore milestones in the Fund's 50-year legacy of service to public education and its commitment to remaining a resilient, adaptable coverage provider for its members.

TASB created the Fund in 1974 to help Texas public education entities provide newly mandated workers' compensation coverage to their employees. Over the past 50 years, the Fund has anticipated the changing risk landscape and adapted to meet its members' needs. Today, the Fund provides comprehensive, responsive risk solutions to more than 1,000 public school districts, education service centers, and other educational entities. 

Senate Bill 283 Passed

The 63rd Texas Legislature passed Senate Bill 283 requiring local governments to provide workers’ compensation insurance for employees injured on the job. Until that time, there were no such requirements. Despite the new legislative mandate, very few private insurance carriers were interested in offering the coverage to local governments.

Workers’ Comp Fund Established

After the Texas Legislature passes SB 283, requiring districts to provide workers’ compensation for all employees, TASB creates the Workers’ Compensation Self-Insurance Fund, essentially beginning TASB risk management services. (It will continue as one of many offerings of the TASB Risk Management Fund in the future.)

Additional Risk Coverage Formed

Because school districts are having trouble purchasing property/casualty insurance (premiums are high and options limited in the commercial market), TASB forms another self-insurance program, the Property/Casualty Joint Account.

Workmen’s Compensation Program Regains Financial Strength

In the 1980s, TASB's membership grew to nearly all Texas school districts in the state, which helped the association better serve its members. That growth, coupled with the state's struggling workers' compensation system, led to a $100 million deficit in the TASB Workmen’s Compensation program. Through direction from the Fund's board and diligent focus on addressing the shortfall, the program regained its financial strength and continues to serve over 500 members.

Risk Management Fund Created

With origins in 1974, when the TASB Workers’ Compensation Self-Insurance Fund was established, TASB risk management programs are combined into one multi-line fund called the TASB Risk Management Fund (a TASB affiliated entity). Coverages include employee benefits, property/casualty, unemployment compensation, and workers’ compensation.

Fund No Longer Offers Employee Benefits Coverage

In 2003, The Fund’s Associate Executive Director, Dubravka Romano, provided expert testimony about the needs of school districts in the state to the Texas Legislature. As a result, the state created TRS ActiveCare to provide employee benefits coverage. In 2006, the Fund stopped offering this coverage since it was now provided by the state.

Innovation Awards Introduced

The Innovation Awards were created to honor and incentivize creative risk management solutions implemented by members with a $1,000 reward. The promotion of winners offers the opportunity to share innovative ideas and best practices to help prevent loss in other member districts. These awards continue today, now called the “TASB Risk Management Fund Excellence Awards.”

Automated External Defibrillators to Members

The Fund distributed 287 Automated External Defibrillators (AEDs) to members as part of a Loss Prevention Grant Program, which helps members implement loss prevention and safety initiatives to reduce the potential for property losses and on-the-job injuries and raise safety awareness. In 2006, the University Interscholastic League (UIL) mandated that all 1,300 Texas high schools have an AED. The Fund was able to help districts meet the mandate and provide life-saving equipment at district facilities.

High-Tier Performer

The Fund’s Workers’ Compensation program is selected as a High-Tier Performer by the Texas Department of Insurance (TDI) for the Performance Based Oversight (PBO) Assessment conducted every other year. By 2024, the Fund has gone on to earn 9 of these awards. The Fund is one of only two workers’ compensation providers that has been designated as High-Tier Performer by the state of Texas every time the assessment has been completed.

Cybersecurity Coverage Added

In recognition of the emerging risk for school districts, the Fund added cybersecurity coverage in 2014. There are now 643 members with cybersecurity coverage. Over the next 10 years, the Fund paid more than $8.3 million in cybersecurity claims.

Largest Property Claim Event in Fund History

In February 2021, Texas was rocked by Winter Storm Uri. Much of the state saw below freezing temperatures and lost power for several days. Thousands of facilities experienced frozen and burst pipes. This storm resulted in more than $100 million in claims affecting more than 230 Fund members, making it the single largest claims event in the history of the Fund.

Cybersecurity Grant Created

To fulfill the Fund’s mission of providing comprehensive and responsive risk solutions, a cybersecurity grant was offered to Fund members who carried cybersecurity coverage. The competitive grant awarded $500,000 to more than 170 members to support their local cybersecurity initiatives.

School-Based Law Enforcement Residency Program

The year-long School-Based Law Enforcement Residency Program created resources and increased awareness of risk management considerations related to strengthening school security. This included new requirements made by the 88th Texas Legislative Session with the passing of House Bill 3 and culminated with a summit in November.

Fund Celebrates 50 Years of Service to its Members

When the commercial insurance industry showed little interest in covering public entities, TASB met its members’ needs by establishing the Fund on Jan. 4, 1974. Over the past half-century and due to the leadership of its board and engagement of its members, the Fund remains one of the country’s largest and most successful risk pools and the largest risk pool serving Texas public schools and the communities they serve.

Annual Fund Members’ Conference Returns

The first Fund Members’ Conference was held in 1994 as a way to offer training and celebrate Fund members. In 2024, the conference returned for the first time since 2019.