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Education news and notes from Tampa Bay and Florida

Sorry, teachers; new Florida law means no substituting for you



The law was intended to stop people from "retiring" from jobs in Florida's public sector only long enough to snap up their pension benefits and then start working again, often in the same job.

But new Florida Retirement System rules that take effect on July 1 have some unintended consequences for the public school systems.

Most notably, retiring teachers won't be able to substitute teach for at least six months after the date they leave their district. Here's how the Pasco school district employee relations office explains the new rule to staff:

"If you fail to terminate all employment with FRS employers or become reemployed with an FRS employer during the six calendar months required to meet the definition of termination, you are not considered retired. You must repay all retirement benefits and you must reapply for retirement, establishing a later effective date of retirement."

See the district's complete explanation for more details.

We've met plenty of older teachers who once counted on DROP extensions to help make ends meet. Now those extensions have been canceled by superintendents trying to cut costs. The next thing on the list often has been subbing to bring in a little extra cash and keep their hands in the education game. That's not an option for six months, now, either.

Anyone want to be a substitute teacher?

[Last modified: Tuesday, May 25, 2010 10:56am]


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