Voluntary Early Retirement of Professional Staff Members
The Board of Education has determined that it is financially advantageous to the school district and a significant benefit to school employees to offer a voluntary early retirement program.
Eligible employees who elect to participate in the voluntary program shall be awarded an early retirement bonus in accordance with the terms and conditions of this policy.
1. Administrators, supervisors, teachers, nurses and all other personnel required to have a license to be employed shall be eligible to participate in the early retirement program.
2. The employee must be 50 years of age or older and actively employed by the district on a full-time basis at the time of electing early retirement.
3. The employee must have a minimum of 20 years of full-time service in the district, the last 10 years of which to be uninterrupted service to the district. Leaves approved by the Board are not an interruption of service. However, time accrued as a result of an approved leave shall not be credited toward the 10-year minimum. Any employee with at least 15 continuous years of uninterrupted service to the district can elect early retirement with a loss of five percent for each year short of the minimum 20 years based on the provisions below.
4. Any employee who terminates service with the district before reaching age 50 cannot claim entitlement after reaching age 50.
Early retirement bonus
An employee who has a letter of resignation on file by May 1 and meets all the requirements for participation in the early retirement plan shall be entitled to a severance bonus. The district shall provide
$3,000 to all eligible employees.
1. Participation in the early retirement plan shall become effective upon approval by the Board and acceptance of the employee's resignation. The superintendent or designee shall review all requests for participation in the plan.
2. Notice of intent to retire and to participate in the early retirement incentive plan must be filed in writing with the superintendent at least 45 calendar days prior to the last day of school in order to qualify. In unusual circumstances, the superintendent or designee may waive the 45-day requirement.
3. Approved requests for early retirement shall be irreversible as of the effective date of the employee's resignation. An employee participating in the early retirement program waives all potential continued employment by the district except as may be provided by the Board.
4. This policy shall not be applicable to any employee terminated for cause.
5. No payment of benefits shall be made by the district in the event of the death of an active employee prior to the actual retirement date.
6. Any changes in the benefits provided by this plan made by the Board shall not apply retroactively to individuals already receiving early retirement benefits unless specifically provided for in the revision of the plan made by the Board.
7. Any employee electing the early retirement plan may continue participation in the district's group health insurance plan. Cost of the entire premium shall be paid by the employee at the current group health insurance rate. All premium payments must be made in advance. Failure to prepay premium payments on the due date shall be cause for the health insurance plan to be irrevocably canceled.
8. Any change in employee benefits as may be deemed appropriate by the Board shall not apply to any employee currently receiving early retirement benefits.
9. In the event of a retired employee's death prior to having received full payment, the employee's beneficiary will receive 100 percent of the remaining benefit. Any remaining payments shall be made in accordance with the plan.
10. Early retirement benefits shall be based upon salary listed or computed from the salary schedule or contracted annual rate and shall not include pay for extra performance, overtime, activities, special assignment pay, stipend payment, etc., or any other employee benefits.
11. Years of service shall be calculated as school years during which the employee was employed on a full-time, continuous basis.
12. The employee's age used to determine the age eligibility requirement shall be the actual age on the date of retirement.
13. The decision of the Board shall be final in interpreting this policy.
14. The Board reserves the right to review the feasibility and cost effectiveness of this policy and program on an annual basis. Any change in the policy, program or early retirement table shall be made by December 1 to be effective for the next calendar year.
Adoption date: Sept. 22, 2014
LEGAL REFS.: 29 U.S.C. 623 (f)(2) (Age Discrimination in Employment Act)
29 C.F.R. 1625.9 (prohibition of involuntary retirement)