• Retirement

    Are you considering retirement?  Here is some helpful information as you consider a new chapter in life.


    Will I receive any?  How do I know?  Where do I look?

    Staff should refer to their Master Agreement if they are in a bargaining unit or the Employee Handbook.  In most situations bargaining groups, staff qualify for severance if they were hired prior to July 1, 2000.  Be sure to reference your Master Agreement for the exact cutoff date.  

    How do I retire?

    It's quite simple.  You just need to submit a letter of retirement to the District Office.  Be sure to sign and date the letter and include the effective date of your retirement.  You will want to consider any requirements that your Master Agreement may have, if you work within a bargaining unit, for your retirement letter.  For instance, some bargaining agreements require 30, 60 or 90 days notice in order to be eligible for severance.  Failure to follow those requirements will result in forfeiture of your severance.  

    Then what happens?

    All you need to do is continue working your contract or schedule until your retirement date.  Once your retirement date has occurred, assuming you have fulfilled all obligations, the District will calculate and submit your eligible severance to MidAmerica within 45 days of your retirement date.  They are the vendor the District uses for all retirement and severance accounts.  MidAmerica then has 30 days to send you their Welcome Kit.  After your retirement your school email will be disabled so be sure to update forwarding contact information before you leave.  

    Also, a Cobra letter will be mailed to your home address.  Cobra is your ability to stay on the District's benefits even though you are no longer an active employee.  However, you are responsible for the full cost of these benefits.  Be sure to complete the forms and return them as soon as possible to avoid a delay or gap in coverage.  

    What else can I do to prepare for retirement or what other information would be helpful in making the decision to retire?

    You may want to consider all resources.  It is recommended that you work with your TRA/PERA representative to determine when the best time is for you to retire.  You may also want to estimate your severance, if you qualify.  You may also ask for a severance estimate from the Benefits Office.  You will also want to consider your benefits.  What do you have?  What will you need?  How much will this cost me?  You can find premium information for health insurance on the District website under Benefits.  Just remember, after retirement, you are responsible for the full premium cost.  Don't forget about your other benefits.  Consider Dental, Life Insurance, and any other ancillary benefit you receive.  You will want to educate yourself on your benefits.  Be aware of what your VEBA or H.S.A. funds can be used for.  Lastly, if you have a 403b, be sure to contact your 403b representative to learn about your account in retirement.  


    What happens if I turn in a retirement date, but the end of the school year changes due to inclement weather days?

    If you submit your retirement notice with a specific retirement date to match the end of the school year, but then the end of the school year changes due to make up days, you will want to submit another notice to update your retirement date.   You can submit an update with a new specific date to match the end of the school year, or you may want to submit an update that just says you will retire "at the end of the 20xx-20xx school year."  This will then allow flexibility and won't require you to continue to send updates should end dates change.  Please keep in mind that TRA and PERA expect your submitted retirement date to match what is acted upon by the board. 


    Contact Information


    Health Reimbursement Arrangements / Flexible Spending Accounts

                            Phone:  855.329.0095

                            Fax:  863.577.4460

                            Claims and Documentation Submission Email:  claims@MyMidAmerica.com

                            General Inquiry Email:  healthaccountservices@MyMidAmerica.com

    Special Pay Plan

                            Phone: 855.329.0097


    Blue Cross Blue Shield of MN

    Representative:  Gene Thul

    Email:  Gene.thul@bluecrossmn.com

    Phone:  320.762.0537

    Log into your account at:  www.bluecrossmn.com



    (formerly Select Account)

    VEBA / HSA

    Customer Service:  1.800.859.2144

    Log into your account at:  hellofurther.com





    Monday – Friday 7:30am – 4:30pm

    Phone:  651.296.2409

    Toll Free:  800.657.3669

    Fax:  651.297.5999





    Phone:  651.296.7460

    Toll Free:  1.800.652.9026

    Fax:  651.297.2547




    • Carla Goedtke
      • 836.8844
    • Thomas Gilbertson
      • 222.3090

    Educators Financial Services, Inc.

    • Brandt Wendland
      • 235.1421


    Willmar Public Schools

    Connie Jensen, Benefits Specialist

    Phone:  1.320.231.8518

    Email:  jensenc@willmar.k12.mn.us


    Shela Houk, Payroll Specialist

    Phone:  1.320.231.8524

    Email:  houks@willmar.k12.mn.us


    Liz Fischer, Director of Human Resources

    Phone:  1.320.231.8520

    Email:  fischere@willmar.k12.mn.us