What is Utrust?
Utrust is an organization that began in 1980 as the Tennessee School Boards Insurance Trust. Its mission was to assist local school boards with employee benefits. The name was changed to Utrust and employee recognition, appreciation and development was added to the mission. It is governed by a seven-member Board of Trustees elected by member school boards. Historically, its primary focus has been the administration of unemployment compensation for local school boards.
Over the years, members of Utrust have saved millions of dollars in unemployment costs. This is a result of the strong governance of the Board of Trustees and their commitment to provide the best services possible to school boards across the state of Tennessee.
In 2008, trustees voted to establish a school employee recognition and appreciation program (EAP) for member school boards. As part of the program, eight appreciation days were established during each school year to recognize various groups of school employees. The Utrust staff develops packets specifically for elementary, middle, and high schools to use in celebrating a different group of employees in each of the appreciation days. These packets are filled with suggestions about how students can use their talents and creativity to honor school employees.The Utrust staff also develops a packet for each appreciation day for use by the board and superintendent for system-wide support and celebration of employees.
Because it is not enough to honor employees on a single day each year, a G-Force (G for gratitude) was added to the Utrust Employee Appreciation Program. the G=Force is tasked with being certain that every school employee is appreciated every week of the school year. The Employee Appreciation Program is designed to teach students leadership skills while they learn to recognize and express appreciation to those who make a difference in their lives each day. Although students may provide tokens of appreciation to the employees being honored, the emphasis is upon sincere expressions of appreciation.
Utrust makes tools available to help students and their leaders to be able to easily catalog photos, videos and other documents in a format that can be used to create lifetime memories for the honorees. Utrust continues to assist boards in recognizing, appreciating, supporting and developing employees and the students they serve.