The Illinois Times provides a set of statistics that depict the increasingly growing problem with teachers’ pensions. On average, about 9.4 percent of the average Illinois teacher’s annual salary is taxed specifically for pension purposes. Every year, teachers, administrators, and school districts alike have paid 100 percent of their required payments. Therefore, the problem does not lie within the hands of the school faculty, or even the various school districts of the state. Instead, the root of the problem stems from the government using pension funds to support other Illinois programs. Ideally, the government is required to keep pension funding at about 90 percent. This, unfortunately, is not the current case.
As of now, the state of Illinois owes the Teachers’ Retirement System approximately $2.4 billion. This year, they will be required to pay only $715 million of that tab. The Illinois government is taking money out of pension accounts faster than it can repay or even think about repaying back the funds.
So what does that mean for teachers?
For one, many teachers will not be receiving their full or any pension after their thirty-five years dedicated to teaching. Unlike most retirees, teachers do not receive Social Security, which means their entire income after retiring must come from their pension or a separate interest-bearing account funded entirely by teachers themselves. Without a sufficient pension, how will teachers... [continues]
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