Retirement & Savings

The Whitfield County Schools retirement program is made up of multiple parts: Social Security and either the Teacher's Retirement System (TRS) or the Public School Employees Retirement System (PSERS), and the Whitfield County Schools personal retirement plan options in a supplemental 403(b), 457(b), or Roth IRA plan.

 

Whitfield County Schools also offers an optional 529 plan college savings fund for all employees.  This plan has federal and state tax advantages that help you maximize savings for children and grandchildren.  More information is below.

 

Important Documents

The Teacher's Retirement System (TRS) is a defined benefit plan, meaning participants are guaranteed a set monthly retirement income from the plan.  Eligible positions include: Certified Teachers, Administrators, Clerical Staff, Paraprofessionals, Lead Custodians, and School Nutrition Managers.

 

The Public School Employees Retirement System (PSERS) is the retirement system for public school employees who are not eligible to participate in TRS.  This is also a defined benefit plan, so participants are guaranteed a set monthly retirement income.  PSERS retirement income supplements income from Social Security for all employees in a permanent position, employed half time or more.  Positions include: Maintenance and Custodial Staff, School Nutrition, Bus Drivers and Monitors, Transportation, and Warehouse staff.

 

The personal retirement plans can help employees supplement their state retirement plan by offering enrollment in a 403(b), 457(b), or Roth IRA.  These plans are available to all employees and are managed by the carriers listed below. 

Teacher's Retirement System (TRS)


How Does It Work? All TRS employees contribute 6% of gross salary to TRS through monthly payroll deduction.  In addition, Whitfield County Schools contributes 21.14% to each TRS employee’s retirement account monthly.

 

TRS members are vested with 10 years of creditable service and eligible to receive a monthly retirement benefit at the:

Completion of 10 years of creditable service and attainment of age 60.

Completion of 30 years of creditable service, regardless of age.

Completion of 25 years of service and before age 60, but with a permanently reduced benefit.

The amount you will receive at retirement is based on 2%, multiplied by your years of creditable service, multiplied by the average of your highest consecutive 24 months of pay.

Example:

2% x 30 years = 60%
Average of highest 24 consecutive months of pay = $70,000
60% x $ 70,000 = $ 42,000 / year

You may contact TRS at 800-352-0650 to request a benefit estimate be mailed to you. You may also generate a benefit estimate online by following the TRS Benefit Estimate Instructions found in the Resources section.

Public School Employees Retirement (PSERS)


How Does It Work?  Participants in PSERS hired before 7/1/2012 contribute $4 monthly for a 9-month contribution period of September through May each year.  Employees hired after 7/1/2012, without prior PSERS qualifying service, contribute $10 monthly for the 9-month period.


PSERS members are vested with 10 years of creditable service and eligible to receive a monthly retirement benefit at the:

  • Completion of 10 years of creditable service and attainment of age 60, at a permanently reduced benefit.
  • Completion of 10 years of creditable service and attainment of age 65 with full benefits.

The amount you receive in retirement is based on your years of creditable service multiplied by a set dollar amount. The current amount set by the Georgia General Assembly is $15.25.

For example, an employee with 30 years of creditable service would receive a monthly benefit based on the calculation of: $15.25 X 30 years of service = $457.50 per month.


You may contact PSERS at 800-805-4609 to request a benefit estimate be mailed to you. You may also generate a benefit estimate online by following the PSERS Benefit Estimate Instructions found in the Resources section.

403(b) and 457(b) Retirement Savings Plans


Retirement savings plans are available if you wish to supplement your retirement benefits.  The funds are managed by AIG Retirement Services (VALIC).

457(b) Retirement Savings Plan

In determining if a 457(b) Roth account is right for you, we encourage you to carefully assess the advantages and disadvantages.  A 457(b) Roth may appeal to those who:

  • Cannot contribute to a Roth IRA due to income limits
  • Are young and in lower income tax brackets than they expect to be in retirement
  • Are financially stable, but expect tax rate increases
  • Want tax diversity and flexibility in retirement

 

403(b) Retirement Savings Plan

A Roth account can be a way to boost your savings or reduce your taxable income in the future. The account will allow you to set aside after-tax money, and after five yers, make tax-free withdrawals of principal, interest, and earnings if certain conditions are met. 

 

Voluntary Roth IRA Retirement


A Roth IRA is a voluntary retirement plan option available to all employees. Below are some features of this plan.

  • Potential for tax-free withdrawals at retirement

  • No required minimum distributions at age 70 ½

  • Contributions are not subject to income taxes when they are withdrawn

  • Potential for beneficiaries to receive income tax-free withdrawals after your death

 

Contribution Limits

  • Under Age 50: $5,500
  • Age 50+ :$6,500

College Saving Plan: Path 2 College


It’s never too early to prepare your child or grandchild for a successful future. The Path2College 529 Plan is flexible, affordable and includes great tax advantages that help you save more of your hard earned money.

  • Optional 529 Plan college savings fund available for all employees

  • Federal and state tax advantages that help you maximize savings

  • Available for children and grandchildren

  • Compounded earnings potential works to help grow your balance over time