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Hello, I really don't know anything about the teacher retirement plan, but I would like to learn. I teach at a public school, and I would like to know how much money I will have when I retire. I would also like to know should I open an IRA or index account. My main concern is that if I can put more money in my teacher retirement, I will, however if the school automatically takes monies out of out my check than I don't have a choice. Help Please
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Hi Jonathonn

I work for the public school system in Georgia, so ours may be different from your state if other than Georgia, but how ours works, the retirement takes a mandatory 5% off the top of your gross every month. Then after being 100 percent vested in the retirement system (10 years) you gain 2% pay back for the years of service you work in the school system, up to 40 years. What this boils down to is I can qualify to retire after 30 years of service. By doing this I would receive 60% of the average of my 2 highest paid years. If I work 40 years I would get the maximum of 80% of the average of my 2 highest paid years. This is okay, but when you look at benefits of other investments it really is not what most people think its cracked up to be. But most people don't think about retirement (unfortuantly) or if they do they "assume" this will be plenty to retire on. Until the day comes and they figure up how much they would receive each month, and it isn't what they were expecting. So in my case, I also have some mutual funds, an annuity, and some long term stocks to suppliment the Teachers retirement, Not to meantion my wife's 401K from where she works.
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I really don't know anything about the teacher retirement plan, but I would like to learn. I teach at a public school, and I would like to know how much money I will have when I retire. I would also like to know should I open an IRA or index account. My main concern is that if I can put more money in my teacher retirement, I will, however if the school automatically takes monies out of out my check than I don't have a choice.

Hi Jonathon,

I hope you were able to see robjankus' great reply. Let me see if I can also offer you a few Foolish links to research some of these topics further.

It's often very good to have other savings/retirement vehicles in addition to a pension or 401K. IRAs make for a great option:
http://www.fool.com/money/allaboutiras/allaboutiras.htm

The Retirement Investing board is a great place to check for additional feedback:
http://boards.fool.com/messages.asp?id=1040013000000000

To learn more about index funds, I'd recommend skimming through the articles in our Index Fund section, as well as visiting the Index Funds discussion board:
http://www.fool.com/school/mutualfunds/mutualfunds.htm
http://boards.fool.com/Messages.asp?id=1030034000000000

And lastly, have you seen the 13 Steps to Investing Foolishly? There's some great info there on getting started. You might also be interested in the Fool's introductory guide:
http://www.fool.com/school.htm?ref=G02A06
http://www.foolmart.com/Shopping/Product_View.asp?PRODUCT_ID=MF141_10&REF=CS108KS

I hope this helps. Best of luck!

Kevin

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Good Morning Teach!

Teachers are some of my favorite people. God bless 'em all!

Sorry, but you will have to do some serious homework on your particular retirement plan(s). Then you can make some projections, perhaps using the calculators that TMF has build in. But keep firmly embedded in your mind that projections are based on assumptions which may or may not turn out to be accurate.

DO open an IRA, preferable a Roth IRA. Even small amounts will make an impact and unlike state and locally sponsered retirement systems, you IRA is not subject to the political wim of the day.

DO check out the links provided in the other postings. Also check the Fools of a Feather folder.

"Teachers are NOT professionals. Rather, they are artisans and craftsmen working in the most plastic of mediums, the human psyche." Phearless Phool.
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