A simple proposal. Give public school teachers an extra year of retirement service credit for the pandemic year.

I’ve been out of the classroom for nearly a decade.

But as I speak to my colleagues who have taught this year it is mind boggling.

That is true whether they taught remotely, in-person or hybrid.

I have a simple proposal. It doesn’t begin to demonstrate what should be our profound thanks.

The Illinois legislature can act to give every public school teacher an extra year of creditable service.

Now some Republican state representative has introduced a bill that offers that up, but only to teachers who did in-person teaching. A days credit for a days in person teaching.

Frankly, that’s bull.

It’s totally divisive. As it was probably meant to be.

Here is the TRS web site with information of Tier 1 creditable service requirements.

Of course, Tier II has got other problems that need to be addressed, but nothing prevents the legislature from offering two years credit to both Tier I and Tier II (those entering the system after January 1, 2011).

It’s a small token.

7 thoughts on “A simple proposal. Give public school teachers an extra year of retirement service credit for the pandemic year.

    1. Dave Severin, a freshman assemblyman from Benton. He was a long-time member of the Benton school board. I want to listen to what he has to say at this Friday’s committee hearing, assuming they get to it (it was supposed to be 3/19 but they ran out of time).

  1. Fred, what about HB2998? Same legislator proposed it, and that one just flatly gives everyone the extra credit for teaching during the pandemic. https://www.ilga.gov/legislation/billstatus.asp?DocNum=2998&GAID=16&GA=102&DocTypeID=HB&LegID=131918&SessionID=110
    Are these two meant to be a “one or the other” proposition? Surely they wouldn’t offer THREE days for each one you taught? At any rate, If HB2997 is the route taken, many public teachers wouldn’t get the full year since most schools have had some degree of full remote. but for teachers with lost service due to maternity leaves, or 10 months in IMRF for starting as an aide, for instance, any opportunity to claw that back and get to retirement sooner needs to be considered.

  2. Teacher pensions are already far too generous! I think that one year of service credit should be taken away from every teacher who refused to teach in person.

    1. Once schools called the teachers into working at school, you didn’t get to ‘refuse’ to teach in-person. If you had a verifiable medical condition, AND IF the school decided you were too hard to replace, THEN they worked out accommodations for you to teach remotely. Otherwise, under the ADA, schools are not required to make accommodations that place an undue burden on the school. This is why, for instance, some multivariable calculus teacher might be teaching from home due to being a cancer patient, while an elementary teacher with the same condition had to take unpaid leave.
      As for losing a year of service, any teacher who took leave via FMLA, whether by choice or by force, had exactly that happen.

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